many smaller homes across the country.
Close behind Barnardo was Thomas Stephenson, a Methodist minister in Lambeth, who founded what was to become the National Children’s Home (NCH) in 1869. In 1871, a large home was opened at Bethnal Green, and another founded on remote moorland at Edgworth, Lancashire. the centralised management of Barnardo’s and the NCH, the homes were run by local committees.
As well as the large national organisations, many homes were set up by local groups or even single individuals, notably George Müller in Bristol and William Quarrier in Scotland. Others, such as the Harris Orphanage in Preston, resulted from bequests by wealthy individuals. The philosophy of these homes was that children in poor circumstances needed to be ‘rescued’.
The home would become their family, also providing education, religious teaching, and industrial training to equip them for adult life.
For boys, the training typically included trades such as shoemaking or carpentry, while the girls were taught domestic and laundry work to prepare them for domestic service. Homes for children with disabilities were also established by the large charities.
A number of occupational groups set up homes for the orphaned children of their members. These included sailors, the police, railway workers, the clergy, teachers, clerks and warehousemen. The homes were funded by contributions from employers and members as well as charitable donations.
Children were a major part of the workhouse population, either with their parents or under the guardianship of the workhouse authorities. From the 1840s, increasing efforts were made to remove children from the ‘taint’ of the workhouse.
A few authorities in London and elsewhere built Separate or District Schools, housing
Children at The Müller Orphanage in Ashley Down, Bristol, early 20th century