|Belford Union Workhouse opened in 1839, 5 years
after the passage of the Poor Law Amendment Act in 1834. It served a
scattered rural area in North Northumberland, and was one of the smallest
workhouses in the country.
This history not only charts the life lived by
inmates of the workhouse over 90 years of its existence, but also looks at
the work of men and women, who as Maters and Matrons, were in charge of the
workhouse, and the ways in which the elected guardians responded to central
government's expectations of their management of the Poor Law system.