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Workhouse Lane

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runwayredder
coventry
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1 of 9  Tue 10th Dec 2013 9:00pm  
Member: Joined Dec 2013  Total posts:2

My mum got the keys to our brand new house in Proffitt Avenue on my first birthday in January 1953. For the first time she had a bath and running water after moving from George St in Hillfields. On some old documents I see the road was previously called Workhouse Lane, although I cannot find any details of a workhouse. I started school at what was Foleshill C of E infants school in a very old building at the corner of Dudley St and Old Church Road. Three classes were in one large room upstairs, we sat on oval mats on the floor and the toilets were outside, non flushable and with carbolic soap. I was only there a year when the new infant school opened over the road. From there I went to the junior school further up the road. A strict school with Mr Windridge as head and a wide use of the dreaded cane. We wrote with pens dipped in ink wells which the ink monitor refilled daily. The buses only ran as far as the Wheel then and it was a long walk for a 3 year old to visit my nan in Alliance Way. Luckily by the time I went to Lyng Hall they had extended the route. My mum still lives in the house I grew up in. Most of the old neighbours have long since gone, but I still keep in contact with my very first friend who I met on my first day at school and lived in Dudley Street. I would love to know if anyone has any idea why it was called Workhouse Lane. I have a very vivid memory of this time and can recall many events even back to the tender age of one.
Workhouse Lane
Midland Red
Cherwell
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2 of 9  Tue 10th Dec 2013 9:08pm  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:4378

Welcome to the forum and thanks for your interesting post - hopefully there are some members who will remember you or the places you mention Wave
Workhouse Lane
dutchman
Spon End
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3 of 9  Tue 10th Dec 2013 10:08pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:3075

It's not shown clearly on maps but there was a small workhouse at Partridge Croft at what is now the junction with Elkington Street and Armfield Street. It would have been demolished when the new housing estate was built between the wars and the renamed avenue extended northwards. Edited by member, 10th Dec 2013 10:10 pm
Workhouse Lane
heritage
Bedworth
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4 of 9  Wed 11th Dec 2013 8:17am  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:374

As far as I know the first Foleshill Parish Workhouse was built on land in ‘Three Well Field’, Rowley’s Green, (very close to the Ricoh Arena of today) and financed by a legacy from an unknown donor in 1724–5, but it was only to remain in use until 1733. It was replaced by a cottage on Partridge Croft at Court House Green. The cottage which was divided into two tenements, was certainly occupied by families placed there by the parish officers. It’s believed that this second parish workhouse may have been replaced in turn about 1787 by a cottage and garden in Brick Kiln Lane (now Broad Street) at Great Heath which belonged to the overseers of the poor, though it is not known how or when they had acquired them (research required). The population falling within the Union at the 1831 census had been 11,965 with parishes ranging in size from Willenhall (population 120) to Foleshill itself (6,969). The average annual poor-rate expenditure for the period 1834-36 had been £5,621 or 9s.5d. per head of the population. It appears that the whole property was sold to meet the costs of furnishing the new house of industry, also built in Brick Kiln Lane, which became the first Foleshill Union workhouse in 1836. When the Foleshill Union took over the existing Foleshill workhouse, the Poor Law Commissioners authorised an expenditure of £400 for it be "altered and enlarged". This followed the introduction of the New Poor Law Act of 1834, the Foleshill Poor Law Union being declared on 28th June 1836.
Workhouse Lane
walrus
cheshire
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5 of 9  Wed 11th Dec 2013 1:32pm  
Member: Joined Dec 2011  Total posts:203

My family moved into 35 Proffitt Avenue in 1953 when I was five. All of our family, 15 of us, went to Courthouse Green Primary before going on to various secondary schools. I read somewhere that Proffitt Avenue was named after a man that had endowed the income from land around Partridge Croft to the local poor, so there might be a tie-in with a workhouse somewhere. My family lived in Proffitt Avenue for over 30 years and dad still misses the old house. Good to see a post from you Runway, our family name is Curran, you might possibly know some of us. Like you I have countless memories of the area and the people.
Workhouse Lane
runwayredder
coventry
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Thread starter
6 of 9  Thu 19th Dec 2013 8:06pm  
Member: Joined Dec 2013  Total posts:2

In 1962 I was attending my junior school when we had a visit from the Lord Mayor. Her name was Emily Allen and I had many an argument because everyone said she was Lady Mayoress not the Mayor. I knew she was the Mayor because she was my great aunt, my Nan's sister. I was too shy to say hello and remained quiet when she visited our class. We went to the Lord Mayors Parlour and she let me try on her Mayoral hat and her chain. She was married to my Uncle Fred and he was one of the first trade unionists in Coventry. I think Aunt Em was in office when she helped to instigate the free school meals. Uncle Fred parents were part of a family that had a farm Ansty way. I have a very old certificate they won as cheesemakers.
Workhouse Lane
dutchman
Spon End
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7 of 9  Fri 20th Dec 2013 2:08am  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:3075

That's correct, she was officially known as 'Lord Mayor' despite being a woman! A 'Lady Mayoress' is merely an honorary title for the wife of a Lord Mayor.
Workhouse Lane
Derrickarthur
Coventry
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8 of 9  Sat 15th Nov 2014 9:47pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2014  Total posts:132

With regard to post 7 (Curran's of Proffitt Avenue) I retired from Meggitt (Previously Dunlop) 18 months ago after 44 years service in the Aviation Laboratory. As Lab staff, I worked with Heat Treatment & Plating Departments and knew Norman Curran who told me he used to live in Proffitt Ave. He was also a close friend of my cousin Paul Tuson who lived in Clark Street. I used to go to the 7th Coventry Scouts in Partridge Croft (as did my son) Edited by member, 15th Nov 2014 9:49 pm
Workhouse Lane
walrus
cheshire
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9 of 9  Sun 16th Nov 2014 11:48am  
Member: Joined Dec 2011  Total posts:203

Norman is my brother and almost an exact contemporary of yours , his twin is Margaret . We were at opposite ends of Proffitt Avenue but from up at your end of the road we knew the Ward family very well , our parents became friends with them when we were all living in Whoberley hostels . The Wards were an even larger family than ours . I also knew Carol Twigg , the Phillips , Cartwrights . Proffitt Avenue is named after the founder of a charity which distributes the income from the original Partridge Croft to the needy . I believe it still exists in some form .
Workhouse Lane

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