The first Board meeting of the Guardians of the Milton Union took place in March 1835 and the Union continued to be run by the Guardians until 1 April 1930 when its responsibilities were transferred under the Local Government Act of 1929 to Kent County Council. Under this new system the parishes which comprised the old Milton Union became part of the Faversham and District Area under the control of the Kent County Council Public Assistance Committee.
PARISHES WITHIN UNION
- Kingsdown near Sittingbourne
- Lower Halstow
- Newington next Sittingbourne
Prior to the erection of the new Union Workhouse the inmates of the existing parish poorhouses were removed to the poorhouses of Milton, Rainham and Sittingbourne. The new Union Workhouse was built at Milton with the first inmates being admitted to the new Workhouse in March 1836.
The workhouse buildings were taken over by Kent County Council in 1930 and became known as the Milton Public Assistance Institution.
The workhouse buildings have now been demolished.
BURIAL OF INMATES DYING IN THE WORKHOUSE
The normal practice for persons dying in the Workhouse was for them to be removed to their parish of settlement (if within the Union) for burial or in the parish where the Workhouse was situated, which for the Milton Union was Milton. If a person died in an institution which was situated out of the Union’s area they were normally buried in the parish of that institution.
Following the Burial Acts of 1852-1857 burials may also have taken place at a cemetery built and operated by the local Burial Board.
BAPTISM OF CHILDREN BORN IN THE WORKHOUSE
The Baptism of children born in the Union Workhouse would normally only take place under exceptional circumstances unless the licence given to the Chaplain of the Workhouse included permission to carry out baptisms in the Workhouse Chapel. Baptisms could also take place in the parish church closest to the Workhouse, in this case Milton, or the parish of settlement.
From 1 January 1905 the address recorded on the birth certificates of children born in the Workhouse was entered as “No 1, North Street”.
The children were educated in the Workhouse by a Schoolmaster and Schoolmistress until from March 1882 when the children attended the local National Schools.
From early 1906 the girls were removed from the Workhouse and accommodated in a Scattered Home at Church House, North Street, Milton.
From January 1914 the boys were sent to another Scattered Home at Langley House, Brewery Road, Milton.
Children were also sent to other specialist institutions run by other Unions, charities or private individuals.
INMATES RECEIVED FROM OTHER UNION WORKHOUSES
From September 1914 inmates were received from the Sheppey Union Workhouse.
INMATES SENT TO OTHER UNION WORKHOUSES
LOCATION OF SURVIVING UNION RECORDS
Kent History and Library Centre, Maidstone, Kent
DOCUMENTS WHICH HAVE BEEN TRANSCRIBED
Admission and Discharge Registers – 1835 to 1841
Minutes of the Board of Guardians – 1835 to 1841
– SEE “LIST OF SURNAMES”