Dunmow Poor Law Union,Essex
Aythorpe Roding, Essex
Great Bardfield, Essex
Great Canfield, Essex
Great Dunmow, Essex
Great Easton, Essex
Hatfield Broad Oak, Essex
High Easter, Essex
High Roding, Essex
Leaden Roding, Essex
Little Bardfield, Essex
Little Canfield, Essex
Little Dunmow, Essex
Little Easton, Essex
Little Saling, Essex
Margaret Roding, Essex
White Roding, Essex
Essex Record Office reference G/D Title [Dunmow Union] The Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 removed responsibility for the poor from parishes (see D/P.../11-18) and transferred administration to Boards of Guardians of the Poor. The Guardians administered groups of parishes or Poor Law Unions. Each Union had its own workhouse. In 1872 the Public Health Act created urban and rural sanitary authorities, with the Guardians constituted as the rural sanitary authority for those parts of each UNION not in an urban sanitary authority. These records are catalogued here as G/...S. The Local Government Act of 1894 replaced rural sanitary authorities with rural district councils (see D/R). The Local Government Act of 1929 abolished the Boards of Guardians and transferred their powers to the Public Assistance Committees of County Councils (for minutes of Essex County Council Public Assistance Committee 1929-1948 see C/MPa 1-22).
Many of the workhouse infirmaries contiuned as hospitals after 1930, continuing after the introduction of the National Health Service in 1948.
For other records illustrating the work of the Guardians see D/P.../19.
For orders, directions and declarations of Poor Law Commissioners responsible for grouping parishes into UNIONs, 1835-1837, see Q/RSw 2-5.
For catalogue of correspondence between Poor Law UNIONs and Poor Law Commission (later Poor Law Board and Local Government Board) 1834-1900 see List and Index Society vol. 56.
G. Cuttle The Legacy of the Rural Guardians (Heffer, 1934 E.R.O. Library 362.50942) provides a good account of the work of the Guardians in six mid-Essex UNIONs, together with the newscuttings he collected and used in writing the book (T/P 181).
For analysis of ledgers see Journal of the Society of Archivists II, pp. 367-369.
DUNMOW UNION consisted of the parishes of Barnston, Broxted, Great Bardfield, Little Bardfield, Great Canfield, Little Canfield, Chickney, Great DUNMOW, Little DUNMOW, High Easter, Great Easton, Little Easton, Felsted, Hatfield Broad Oak, Lindsell, Aythorpe Roding, High Roding, Leaden Roding, Margaret Roding, White Roding, Bardfield Saling, Stebbing, Takeley, Thaxted, Tilty.
For more information on the history of the workhouse, see Peter Higginbotham's web site: www.workhouses.org.uk and http://www.workhouses.org.uk/index.html?Dunmow/Dunmow.shtml