Friday, January 01, 2021

An Awful New Year Day Calamity


This morning my Councillor colleague, John Whitworth and I, went to West Ham Cemetery to lay some flowers at the memorial to 26 boys who died in a fire exactly 131 years ago. The boys lived in a massive workhouse for children nearby in Forest Gate (now converted into privately owned flats). 

It would appear that the children were locked into dormitories at night and were unable to escape. 

Check our the names and ages of the children below and a full account of the tragedy at this local history website E7 Now & Then. 

Augustus Flowers, aged 10, of 1, Laura Cottages, Millwall ; Theophilus Flowers, aged 9, 1, Laura Cottages, Millwall; John Jones, aged 7,  4, Island Street, Brunswick Road, Poplar; John Taylor, aged 7,  3, Amiel Street, Bromley; Michael Vassum, aged 8, mother in Whitechapel Workhouse; Frederick Smith, aged 9, 50, Church Street, Whitechapel; Edward Kilburn, aged 9, mother inmate in Poplar Workhouse; John Joyce, aged 10, 61, Apperion Road, Bow; Richard Page, aged 7, 45, Vanne Street, Bromley; James Potts, aged 10, 4, Newham Buildings, Pelham Street, Whitechapel; William Hume, aged 9, 52, Railway Street, Bromley ; Frank Chalk, aged 7, of Whitechapel; Herbert Russell, aged 10, mother in Croydon Workhouse; James Rolfe, aged 8,  61, Milton Road, Bow; Thomas North, aged 12, of Poplar Union; Walter Searle, aged 9, an orphan, from Poplar; Charles Biddick, aged 12,  4, Medway Road, Mile End; Frederick Scott, aged 7, 9, Oliver's Court, Bow Road; Henry Sowerbutts, aged 10, mother in Poplar Workhouse; Gilbert Allison, aged 10, 3, Charles Street, Millwall; Thomas Hughes, aged 11, father in Poplar Workhouse; William Dawson, aged 7, mother in Bow Infirmary; Frederick Wigmore, aged 8, mother in Croydon Workhouse; William Sillitoe, aged 9, father in Whitechapel Infirmary; Arthur Pigeon, aged 9, 31, Burdett Road, Bow; Albert Smith, aged 12, 14, Mansfield Road, Millwall.

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