Hidden Lives Revealed. A virtual archive - children in care 1881-1981 * Image of handwritten text

St Nicholas' Home, West Byfleet

Photograph of St Nicholas' Home, West Byfleet

Discover more about this imagelink opens in a new window

St Nicholas' Home, West Byfleet

West Byfleet, Surrey

(1893 - 1908)

St Nicholas' was opened on 7 June 1893, as was the Byfleet Receiving Home next door, when the Lord Bishop of Winchester came to dedicate the Home. It was common practice for homes that were named after Saints to be opened with a ceremony of this kind. St Nicholas' was established as a home for disabled children under the age of 12, and it had been specifically adapted for its purpose. There were very few stairs in the house, which allowed wheelchairs to move around easily. The Home's first boys and girls came from Tooting, where they had been housed temporarily.

The Home possessed its own chapel, which lay at the bottom of the garden. Prayer meetings were held in here every day, and religious teachings would be read to the children. It was well equipped with a temporary font, and enough chairs to seat all of the Home's residents. This was no mean feat, as St Nicholas' could house up to 60 children. They were all looked after by the Lady Superintendent Miss Carr, who worked at the Home for 14 years.

The Home closed in 1908 and the children moved to Pyrford.

The Children's Society UNESCO logo Big
           Lottery Fund logo Wellcome Trust