'I hereby order the alleged defective… to be sent to Brockhall Institution'. Highvolume Play Pause Stop

The main building at Brockhall Hospital 1993. This building would have been here since its first days as Lancashire Inebriates Reformatory, which opened in 1904.
Courtesy of Lancashire County Council Museums Service

Manchester M21, UK

Wilhelmina D Family Story: Part One

As said in the introduction, Wilhelmina D, born on January 20th 1912 was sent from her home in Chorlton-cum-Hardy (Manchester) to Brockhall Institution in March 1921. Wilhelmina was 9 years old.

Here are typed copies from Lancashire Archives of documents which were key to Wilhelmina being classified and admitted to Brockhall in 1921:

one of her two medical certificates,

a petition for her admission and

the order for her admission.

Brockhall at this time was still officially an institution for so-called ‘inebriate women’ – reflecting its opening in 1904 – but it seems that its population was actually made up of girls and women with what we now term learning disabilities. This changed status was officially recognised in 1924 when the Inebriates Act Board of Lancashire was disbanded and Brockhall’s management was passed over to the Lancashire Asylums Board. It was only in 1927 that the first males were admitted to the institution.

More information on Brockhall history:

About Brockhall

Heather Hindmarch (1992) ‘Lisieux Hall and the Provision of Services to People with Learning Difficulties in Lancashire’. Lancashire Polytechnic Dissertation




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