Gressenhall Workhouse



The workhouse was a poor law institution. Its purpose was to provide a home and work for the poor local people who had nowhere to live. Gressenhall near Dereham was constructed in 1776 and took one year to open.


In 1894, the British Medical Journal set up a "commission" to investigate conditions in provincial workhouses and their infirmaries. Following a visit to the Gressenhall establishment, the commission's report noted an inconvenient separation of the female and male infirmaries, with conditions in the latter described as "squalid" and "dreary, comfortless, and crowded". There were no proper baths or running water. The sole nurse was untrained and assisted by a pauper "wardsman" who, at night, provided the only form of nursing attendance.


In 1930, the workhouse became Gressenhall Institution. After the Second World War it provided accommodation for the elderly until 1974. The former casual wards were also used to provide emergency accommodation to homeless families. In 1976, the buildings became a rural life museum now known as Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse: Museum of Norfolk Life.


This was a photoshoot organised by the U3A DPG. Both the farm and the Workhouse provided ample photo opportunities, but I was struck by the austerity and contrasts of the workhouse itself.


I hope my pics reflect this . . .


The Wells Lifeboat Horse

News Latest

October - 2020

This month sees  a third 'Blurb' book published! This one covers various DPG topics and my contributions to them. Printed on premium grade paper in hardback, it has a high quality feel and is a great coffeee table read.

Full details are here: https://www.blurb.co.uk/b/10334723-playgroup-a-journey-through-digital-photography


DPG - 2021

As we begin 2021, meetings are not possible and it is uncertain when they will re-start. So we have devised a programme for the first 6 months, based on members contributing to the Viewing Platform on the chosen subjects.

Full details are here: www.dpg-vp.weebly.com


There are links also to the basic photography course by Chris Bray that we ran last year and other useful contacts and links.


PORTFOLIO develops different themes and ideas - your feedback will be most welcome.

Stories of a devasting fire in Devon, the Wells 'Lifeboat Horse' and a visit to London's 'Winter Wonderland' are the first three. Watch out for more to come . . .


Watch this space for further news . . .


U3A DPG - 2021

Just before the first dreaded Covid-19 lockdown in March 2020, we did manage to squeeze in a visit to Fakenham Races. It was Friday the 13th so most of us refrained from gambling, preferring to concentrate on the photo opportunities. Here's mine: Fakenham Races


Since then, we've been restricted to 'virtual' meetings and to this end you can find all that we're getting up to on on our Viewing Platform, www.dpg-vp.weebly.com


I hope you enjoy the experience.


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