A History of the County of Warwick: Volume 7, the City of Birmingham. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1964.
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CHARITIES FOR THE POOR
This section was completed in 1958. The charities described in it have been confined, with some minor exceptions, to those for the poor, including almshouses and homes, and to endowed trusts for general charitable purposes. Charitable trusts for specific objects other than the relief of the poor, such as those for church purposes, hospitals and dispensaries, and cultural and recreational purposes, are dealt with where necessary in the sections dealing with those subjects; so also are charitable institutions dependent primarily on voluntary contributions.
The charities are those of the ancient parishes of Aston, Birmingham, Edgbaston, Handsworth, and Harborne, and of the whole area of the modern city. The charities of the ancient parishes of Worcestershire, all or parts of which are now in Birmingham, have been dealt with in the Victoria History of Worcestershire, iii (1913); charities founded since 1913 and limited to the area of these Worcestershire parishes are not described. Charities for other Warwickshire parishes, parts of which are in modern Birmingham, are dealt with in the Victoria History of Warwickshire, iv (1947).
Alderson Disabled Ex-Servicemen's Homes Trust.
In 1932 Bernard Alderson gave £5,000 to the corporation for building houses to be let at nominal rents to Birmingham ex-servicemen or, failing them, to poor and preferably old people. The charity was regulated by a trust deed in 1933, and in that year fourteen houses were built in Kingsbury Road and Holly Lane, Erdington. Two more houses were built with accumulated funds in 1954.(1, 6)
By a trust deed of 1892 a sum given by an anonymous donor, now represented by £732 19s. 2d. stock, was conveyed to the churchwardens of St. Philip's, the income to be used in general assistance to the poor of the parish. In 1952, when the annual income was £18 6s. 2d., it was said that the charity had been distributed in donations to various hospitals.(6)
Emma Ball's Homes of Rest.
In 1901 Emma Ball gave a piece of land in Handsworth in trust for the building of almshouses, the administration of which was to be connected with the New Church Society, Wretham Road (see p. 480). By her will of 1911 the founder gave £500 for the erection of two or more homes for aged and infirm people, and £1,400 to provide for repairs and for the payment of sums of 7s. a week to the occupants. The charity was regulated by a Scheme of 1917, and two houses were built in Charleville Road in 1924-5. The stipends were increased to 10s. in 1927. In 1952, when the gross yearly income was £110, there were two almspeople.(1, 6)
Richard and Samuel Banner's Charities.
In a trust deed of 1716 it was declared that Richard Banner had bequeathed £100 with which Samuel Banner was to purchase land, the income to be used to buy six alms-coats annually for poor men of Birmingham, and the residue to apprentice poor boys. Samuel Banner, with the principal and interest upon it, and with an additional sum of £29 5s. 9d., bought land in Erdington, and directed his son Richard to put the land in trust, with the additional provision that 25s. was to be expended annually on the purchase of alms-gowns and petticoats for poor women. Richard made these arrangements in 1716. In 1827 most of the income of £20 was spent on clothes for from six to ten poor men and ten to 30 poor women. It was later said that at that date no money was in practice spent on apprentices, and the last application from an apprentice for a grant was said to have been in 1862.
By 1931 the income, which was then from property in Holly Lane and Moor End Lane, Erdington, and in Caroline Street and Regent's Place, Birmingham, had greatly increased, and was expected to be £120 to £130 a year. About £60 was being spent on clothing for poor people, and there was an accumulating surplus. By a Scheme of 1932 half the income was to be used in the purchase of clothing for poor men and widows in the city, and half in the assistance by apprenticeship, education and otherwise, of poor boys. In 1956-7 there was an income of over £94 from rents and £26 from investments, and sums of £70 were spent on clothing and £89 10s. on apprenticing and education. (3, 1)
Thomas Birch's Charity.
By will dated 1689 Thomas Birch gave a rent-charge of 40s. to be used in apprenticing a poor boy of Erdington. The charge was redeemed in 1928 for £80 stock. By a Scheme of 1907 provision was made for the income to be applied for the benefit of deserving and needy boys of Erdington, by providing the cost of an outfit or tools and by assisting them to earn their own living. The income was said to be under £5 in 1952.(9, 6)
John Billingsley's Charity.
Under the will of John Billingsley dated 1629 property in Deritend was by deed of 1667 vested in trustees, the income to be used in buying bread worth 1s. weekly for equal distribution between the poor of Deritend and Bordesley and the poor of Birmingham. Very little money was used for this purpose during the later 18th century, when extensive repairs were being carried out to the property. In 1804 the trustees opened a subscription for the rebuilding of the premises, which realized £180, and the premises were rebuilt in 1813. The income in 1827 was £34 1s. 4d., the greater part of which was regularly distributed in bread. In 1909 the income of £55 was distributed in bread tickets. By a Scheme of 1910 any residue after a distribution of bread might be expended on general charitable uses. The property in High Street, Deritend, was sold in 1919 and the proceeds invested. The income from £1,885 10s. 7d. stock was over £47 in 1952, and in 1948-52 was distributed among a number of Birmingham charitable societies.(3, 1)
Charity of Richard Bloxwich and Others.
In a deed of 1771 it was declared that by will dated 1619 Richard Bloxwich gave £40 to be laid out in land, one-half of the income from which was to be distributed among five of the poorest and neediest in Aston parish and the other half provide for two sermons to be preached in the parish church. It was also said that several other people gave sums of money for charitable uses in the parish: Humphrey Bloxwich to the poor of Aston hide £20; Clement Smith to the poor £6; William Booth to the poor of Aston hide £27; John Shelley to the poor of Erdington £5; Percival Booth to the poor of Witton £2 and an unknown donor to the poor £3. These sums, with Richard Bloxwich's bequest, making a total of £103, were about 1653 laid out in the purchase of lands in the manors of Erdington and Pype Hall, the income to be distributed in a manner consistent with the intentions of the donors. Some new land was acquired as a result of the Inclosure Award of 1804. The land was sold in 1902 for £2,500 and the proceeds invested.
At some time before 1773 Mrs. Butler gave property at Fazeley to the churchwardens and overseers of Aston for the poor of Aston. Part of this property was sold in 1936 for £10. A sum of £10 given by will of Mrs. Devereux, together with £36 11s. 3d. from the sale of timber from the Poor's Land, and several other bequests, making a total of £82, and interest upon this sum, was in 1860 invested in £100 stock.
All these charities were regulated by a Scheme of 1879. After payment for sermons, half of the income was to be used for the benefit of poor people of Aston, and half in promoting the education of the poor of the parish. The income was said to be £70 18s. 10d. in 1952.(4, 9, 6)
Henry Booth's Charities.
By will proved 1926 Henry Booth gave £1,000 in trust to each of a number of parishes, among them St. Martin's, Birmingham, the income to be used for the provision of clothing for poor parishioners during winter. The sum given to St. Martin's was invested in £1,003 0s. 8d. stock, and in 1952 the income was being distributed as directed.(1, 6)
Mary Brigg's Trust.
By will proved 1930 Mary Briggs gave her residuary estate in trust for the maintenance of a social worker among the poor of Birmingham. The charity, with an endowment of £7,521 5s. 5d., was established by a Scheme of 1932. In 1955-6 the investments amounted to £9,819 3s. 7d., and from the income of £401, £150 was given to Birmingham Boys and Girls Union and £200 to Yardley parish church.(1)
The Brinsley Bequest.
By his will dated 1902 William Brinsley gave his residuary estate in trust, the income to be distributed among the charitable institutions of Birmingham. The amount which accrued to the trust was £12,364. In 1952 the income was £434 7s., which was distributed as directed.(6)
Thomas Bromwich's Charity.
By a trust deed of 1579 Thomas Bromwich gave property, the income from which was to be distributed to 45 people, fifteen each of Great Barr, Perry Barr and Handsworth. As part of the Inclosure Award of 1794, the original property was exchanged with George Birch for land on Handsworth Heath beside the later Soho Road. The trustees of Handsworth Poor's Lands believed themselves to have come into possession of all or part of this property in connexion with gifts of George Birch, and the rent from part of it was paid to that charity until 1850. In addition to this land Bromwich's Charity acquired land between Lozells and Heathfield Roads.
The administration of the charity was regulated by a Chancery decree of 1850 and Scheme of 1855. The trustees were to continue to distribute £13 each year among 'the several classes of the poor who have lately . . . enjoyed the benefits' and the surplus income was to be accumulated until another Scheme should be prepared. As a result of the granting of building leases on its property between 1855 and 1864 the income of the charity rose to £264 a year in 1868. The affairs of the charity were at the time the subject of prolonged controversy; there were disputes about the claims of the Poor's Lands, the way in which the income was to be utilized, its distribution among the three villages, and the denominational character of the trustees. The Scheme of 1872, which determined the method of appointing trustees, still met with some opposition; by it the income was to be distributed equally among the poor of the three villages in kind and in aid to provident and friendly societies. Unexpended income continued to accumulate until the end of the 19th century. In 1956 the gross income was £279 15s. 3d. from rents and £44 4s. 10d. from £1,264 3s. 3d. stock. Sums of £101 4s. 10d. in Handsworth and £101 4s. 8d. in Perry Barr and in Great Barr were distributed to individuals and to charitable societies.(2, 1)
The Eliza Brown Trust.
As the result of a wish expressed by Eliza Brown in an unproved will of 1923, a sum of £200 from her estate was received by the Vicar of St. Luke's Church, Birmingham, in 1955. The interest was to be distributed to five poor widows every Christmas, and the income of about £5 is distributed as directed.(6, 13)
Alice Carter's Charity.
By will proved 1936 Alice Carter, after a number of charitable gifts, gave the residue of her estate for the purchase and endowment of a house for three ex-soldiers over 60, to be known as the Albert and Myra Carter Soldiers' Home. A house was bought at 53 Alcester Road in 1936.(1)
James Chidlaw's Charity.
By will proved 1932 James Chidlaw gave £1,000 to the Church of the Messiah Domestic Mission, Fazeley Street (see p. 474), the income to be used in the provision of holidays and of convalescent treatment for poor persons connected with the mission. The sum was invested in 1933.(1)
The Church Land and St. Thomas's Dole, Erdington.
From at least 1652 an annual sum of 6s. 8d. was received from the 'parish' or 'church' land by the churchwarden of Aston. In the early 19th century it was being paid in respect of land in Bordesley, but in 1872-4 it was said that the rent-charge was withheld. It is possible that this endowment was connected with the Poor's Land or St. Thomas's Dole, Erdington. The endowment of this charity consisted of a piece of land in Gravelly Lane, Aston, and another awarded in the Erdington Inclosure to the churchwardens and overseers of Aston. The latter piece was sold in 1932 and the purchase money, £600, invested. The income of the charity, about £40, was formerly distributed to the poor of Aston, but for many years has been distributed to the poor of Erdington.(4, 9, 5)
Catharine Cornforth's Charity.
By will proved 1908 Mrs. Catharine Cornforth gave a sum of £1,140 and rent of £110 a year in trust for the benefit of aged and indigent persons living in or near Birmingham. The rent was sold, and in 1909 the investments of the charity consisted of £3,760 9s. 9d. stock. In 1934, when income and expenditure were about £111 a year, a further £200 of accumulated income was invested. In 1955-6 £108 was distributed in monthly payments to three poor people.(1)
George Cox's Charity.
By will proved 1933 George Cox gave £2,000 to St. Mary's Church, Handsworth, the income to be used for the upkeep of his grave and any surplus for the sick and needy of the parish. As the first of these provisions was void, the whole income became applicable to the second. The sum was invested in 1933, and the income is distributed as directed.(1)
Anne Crowley's Charity.
By will dated 1733 Anne Crowley gave in trust her property in Birmingham, from the income of which £1 was to be paid annually to a dissenting minister of Birmingham, £5 to poor people of Birmingham, and the residue to the maintenance of a school for poor children. In 1827 the income was being applied to these purposes; the school had been in existence since before 1779 (see p. 511).
By 1908 the property had been sold and the proceeds invested, and in that year the endowment was divided into three separate funds, one of which, of £200, formed Crowley's Charity for the Poor. From 1945 to 1948 £5 from this fund was paid each year to the Birmingham Citizens Society, but from 1949 to 1953 no disbursements were made.(3, 1)
John Crowley's Charity.
By will dated 1709 John Crowley gave a rent-charge of 20s. to be distributed in bread to the poor of Birmingham at the parish church. The sum was paid and distributed until about 1825 when the property was sold to the street commissioners and became part of a street. In 1827 the former owner, E. V. Wilkes, undertook to make arrangements for the payment to be continued, but in 1875 it was said that the charity was apparently lost. The rent-charge was however redeemed in 1929 for £30, which were invested in £54 15s. 1d. stock. In 1952 the income of £1 7s. 4d. was distributed as part of St. Martin's Sick and Needy Fund.(3, 5, 1, 6)
Charities of John Dalloway and John Worrall.
By will dated 1809 John Dalloway gave £250 in trust, £5 of the income to be distributed in clothing to five poor men of Deritend and the residue in bread to the poor. By will proved in 1850 John Worrall gave £100 in trust for the purchase of food for poor widows of Deritend and Bordesley. The charities are administered by the Vicar and churchwardens of St. John and St. Basil, Deritend, and are distributed at Christmas in food and blankets for poor and aged persons.(9, 6)
Baron Davenport's Charity Trust.
In 1930 by a trust deed B. J. Davenport gave £80,000 stock and £20,000 cash, the income to be paid to charities in the Birmingham area. Regulations for the utilization of additional gifts were made by a deed of 1931. The income was to be divided into £100 a year for Church of England purposes and £50 a year for the Hebrew congregation, Singer's Hill (see p. 484). The remainder was to be divided in the proportions of 50 per cent. to Birmingham hospitals, 15 per cent. to institutions and organizations for the benefit of children, 15 per cent, to almshouses and 20 per cent. for the relief of middle-class people in reduced circumstances. In 1939-40 the investments amounted to £142,108 and the income was £10,054. In 1949, when the hospitals and most of the children's institutions had become part of the National Health Service, the proportions were changed by the trustees to 30 per cent. for children's institutions, 30 per cent. for almshouses and 40 per cent. for necessitous middle-class people. A Scheme of 1957 authorized the payment of increased amounts for Church of England purposes and to the Singer's Hill congregation, and confirmed the arrangements for the distribution of the residue. In 1956-7 two sums of £1,098 10s. 1d. and one of £1,464 13s. 5d. were distributed; there were also reserve funds of £10,000 and £105,000.(1)
Frank Davenport's Almshouses.
In 1934 and 1935 Frank R. Davenport erected 20 almshouses in Tile House Lane, Solihull, and by deed of 1935 put them, together with an endowment of £4,000 and property in King's Norton, in trust for the use of poor persons of the middle class of Birmingham and district. By his will proved in 1942 the founder gave a further £10,000, and residuary sums which amounted to £3,572 11s. 7d., for the endowment of the charity.(1)
The almshouses known as Dowell's Retreat were built by James Dowell and, by deed of 1831, endowed by his widow Elizabeth with property in Bordesley and elsewhere. There were 21 almshouses and a chapel in Warner Street, Bordesley, for the use of poor, aged women, preferably from Bordesley and Deritend. The income of the charity in 1952 was about £400 from rents and stock, which was expended on the maintenance of the almshouses and the provision of stipends and fuel for the almspeople.(9, 6)
William Dudley's Trust.
By deed of 1875 William Dudley gave £100,000 in trust, the income to be used to benefit young tradesmen by lending them money at low interest, and, if any remained, in pecuniary assistance to aged tradesmen, and to charitable institutions for the relief of human suffering. In 1950 it was said that the number of tradesmen in receipt of pensions had fallen from 172 in 1938 to 52 in 1949; there were then 27 loans current, and considerable sums were being distributed for the relief of suffering. The trustees were anxious to include assistance to old people in this latter category, and in 1951 £8,000 was granted to the Copec (Conference on Politics, Economics and Citizenship Home Improvement) Society towards the provision of a home for elderly poor people of Birmingham. In 1956 the income from property was £463, and from £110,705 stock and other investments nearly £4,000. In addition to loans, £945 were paid to needy tradesmen in sums of £10 to £30 each, and £1,470 to charitable institutions.(1)
Evans Cottage Homes.
In 1868 a company was formed to provide cottage homes and annuities for ladies of reduced circumstances. A site for the homes on the Bristol Road in Selly Oak was bought in March of that year and nine cottages were built there. In September Arthur Evans gave property worth £78 16s. 4d. annually in trust for the purposes of the home, which was known as the Evans Cottage Homes. This property was sold for £5,000 in 1935. In 1950-1 the income of the charity was £165 0s. 11d. from the Arthur Evans Fund, £137 17s. 2d. from rents, and £130 from £4,250 stock. After maintenance of the homes, £193 15s. were distributed in annuities. There were twelve tenants in 1952.(1, 6)
John Feeney's Trust.
By will proved 1906 John Feeney, besides many other charitable bequests, gave a residuary sum in trust for the benefit of the public charities of Birmingham, and for the promotion of arts and the acquisition and maintenance of parks (see p. 233). The fund was £102,547 17s. 3d. in 1956 and there was also an income of £125 7s. from rents. The gross income of the charity was about £3,600. In 1956 £950 were spent on the purchase of a picture for the Birmingham Art Gallery and £2,600 were distributed among Birmingham societies.(1, 6)
By will proved 1929 A. H. Foster, among other charitable bequests, gave the six cottages called the Gracewell Cottages, Wake Green Road, Moseley, other property and £30,000, to be known as the Gracewell Homes Foster Trust, for the provision of homes for necessitous spinsters or widows, preferably Birmingham residents. The building of ten additional almshouses in Gracewell Road was begun in 1929 and the first almspeople were appointed in the same year. The trust was regulated by a Scheme of 1931, when the endowment consisted of £7,200.(1, 6)
C. H. Foyle Trust.
By a deed of 1940 C. H. Foyle gave £7,000 in trust for general charitable objects, including medical and educational facilities and housing for the working classes. Considerable additions were made to the trust, and in 1952 the annual income was about £5,500, which was distributed as directed.(6)
By will proved 1931 G. E. Gee gave a residuary sum in trust for the benefit of the deserving poor of Birmingham. The charity was expected to receive £5,000 to £6,000 immediately and £8,000 on reversion. A Scheme for the administration of the charity was still in preparation in 1939, and no further information about the charity has been obtained.(1)
Gilbert and Mansell's Charity.
By will proved 1921 Jane Gilbert gave £2,000 in trust the income to be distributed in sums of 10s. to deserving poor persons. The terms of the will were the subject of a High Court Order of 1929, and after difficulty in finding people willing to act as trustees the charity was regulated by a Scheme of 1931. By the Scheme the income was to be distributed in pensions of from 4s. to 10s. a week.
By will proved in 1937 Clara Mansell gave her residuary estate to the charity. In the course of the prolonged winding-up of the estate, some £13,000 were received in the 1940s. In 1956 the investments of the charity were £14,679 15s. 11d. stock and the gross income £514 8s. 10d., and £573 were distributed in pensions.(1)
By deeds of 1824 Sarah Glover and Elizabeth Mansfield, in accordance with the wishes of Charles Glover, gave property around Floodgate Street in trust for a Birmingham Orphans School Association, if such should be founded within ten years, and, failing that, to build almshouses for poor, aged women, and if possible for poor, aged men, of Birmingham, to be known as Glover's Charity. The association was not formed, and a block of almshouses was built near the Ebenezer Chapel in Steelhouse Lane. Another 20 almshouses were built on a neighbouring site in 1852. The annual income of the charity was £271 in 1858. In 1880 the original building was sold and the accommodation on the remaining site increased to 30.
Property in Chester Road, Sutton Coldfield, was bought in 1930 and 28 houses were built there. The old almshouses and their site were sold in 1932 and the inmates transferred to Sutton Coldfield. (1, 6)
Griffin's Gift Trust.
By will proved 1878 Matthias Griffin gave £1,000 to the trustees of the Union Chapel in Handsworth (see p. 453), the income to be used in the purchase of food, clothing, and fuel at Christmas for distribution among 50 poor persons of Handsworth. The distribution was in kind until 1939, but because of war-time shortages was thereafter made in sums of money. In 1956 the income of £30 from £1,000 1s. 7d. stock was distributed in 50 payments of 12s. each.(1)
Felix Hadley's Charity.
By deed of 1898 Felix Hadley gave property in Birmingham in trust, the income to be used in providing holidays for poor children, and the lease of a house in Conway for use as a holiday home was acquired in the same year. The Birmingham property was sold and the proceeds invested in 1920. In 1951 when the home was sold by the trustees it was said to have been empty for many years. By a Scheme of 1954 the income from investments of £7,002 0s. 6d. was to be used in providing holidays and excursions by the sea or in the country for poor boys and girls of Birmingham.(1)
Hadley Pension Fund.
By deed of 1913 Mary Hadley gave £700 to the Royal Institution for the Blind, Birmingham, the income to be used in the payment of pensions of from £6 10s. to £13 a year, and other necessary assistance, to blind women of Warwickshire, Worcestershire, and Staffordshire. By her will proved 1936 Sarah Hadley gave a further £2,000 and her residuary estate to the fund. The fund amounted to £6,200 in 1956.(1)
Emma Hall's Charity.
By will proved 1909 Emma Hall gave £100 to the Vicar and churchwardens of St. Luke's, the income to be distributed among the poor of the parish. The sum was invested in 1914. In the 1920s the whole income was being distributed in bread and coal tickets. The income was said to be about £3 19s. 6d. in 1952.(1, 6)
John Hammond's Charity.
By will dated 1785 John Hammond gave his residuary estate in trust for various charitable purposes, among them the distribution of one-fifth of the income to poor, aged widows of Birmingham. The residuary estate of £800 was invested and the income regularly distributed throughout the 19th century. In 1906 the sum of £160 14s. 5d. was transferred to a separate educational account. In 1942 the investments of £642 18s. 10d. produced an income of £16 1s. 4d., of which one-half was distributed to poor widows. (1, 6)
Handsworth Bridge Trust.
By a deed of 1612 Nicholas Hodgetts conveyed property in Handsworth, Perry Barr, and Witton in trust that the rents should be spent on the repair and maintenance of bridges (see p. 32) and any surplus on 'good and charitable uses' in Handsworth parish. In several years between c. 1785 and c. 1800 sums of £20 to £50 were spent on apprenticing, or on medicines, coals, and other necessaries for the poor.(2, 1)
Handsworth Parochial Charities.
By a Scheme of 1890, seven charities for the poor of Handsworth and Perry Barr, the Poor's Lands and the charities of Hodgett, Birch, Grice, Huxley and Stubbs, Osbourne, and Boulton, were united as the Handsworth Parochial Charities. The Handsworth part of these charities (except Boulton's, founded in 1826) was in 1823 being administered together with Bromwich's charity, q.v., through the Handsworth Distribution Fund, and distributed in sums of 1s. to 3s. The income was distributed in this way until 1890. The Perry Barr part of the charities was administered and distributed in a similar way by the churchwardens there.
Lands in Perry Barr, known as the Poor's Lands, in 1823 produced rents amounting to £10 17s., of which two-thirds was distributed in Handsworth and one-third in Perry Barr, and £2 2s., which were distributed in Handsworth alone. By 1865-6 the rents had risen to £14 11s., and by 1917 to £21 13s. 3d. The plot producing a rent-charge of 6s., given by Henry Osborn by deed of 1670 for eighteen poor people of Perry Barr, appears to have been merged with the Poor's Lands during the 19th century.
By a deed of 1627 a rent-charge of 40s. from property in West Bromwich, given by Thomas Hodgett in his will dated 1625, was vested in trustees, the money to be used for the poor of Handsworth. Until about 1871 the rent was received and distributed; thereafter for some years the tenant refused to pay, but finally agreed that it should be redeemed, £67 being invested in 1876.
By deed of 1663 Thomas Birch, for the performance of a gift of 20s. yearly by George Birch, gave to trustees an annual rent-charge of this sum on property in West Bromwich; 6s. were to be given to the parson of Handsworth for a sermon and the remainder to the poor of Handsworth. The sum was for some years not paid, but was again being received in 1823. By 1865-6 the 20s. were divided equally between the rector and the poor.
By deed of 1806 Joseph Grice gave property in Birmingham worth £7 16s. 3d. annually, for the payment of £2 2s. to the Rector of Handsworth and the remainder to the poor there; he also made provision for the apportionment of the income after the expiration of the existing lease. In 1823 two-thirds of the residue was being given to the poor of Handsworth and one-third to those of Perry Barr. In 1890 the property, ten houses in Sand Pit Terrace, Birmingham, was still producing the same sum, but by 1917 the income, then said to be from land and buildings in Summer Hill Road, was £183 15s. 10d.
In deeds of 1819 it was said that, as a result of bequests by Dorothy Huxley (will dated 1797) and Joseph Stubbs (will dated 1817), a piece of land had been bought for £100; of the income of £4 2s., £2 2s. were to be paid to the choristers of Handsworth Church in accordance with the instructions of Joseph Stubbs, and the remainder to the poor of Handsworth in accordance with the wishes of Dorothy Huxley. A building lease of the land, at Well Head, Handsworth, was granted in 1865, and the income rose to £34 5s. 8d.
The will of Thomas Osbourne, dated 1739, referred to land in Handsworth which was 'subject to the usual and accustomed payment of 20s. a year to the poor of Handsworth'. Neither the will nor a number of subsequent deeds mentioned the name of the original donor. In the early 19th century the sum was usually given in bread, but the payment fell into arrears between 1818 and 1823. In 1917 the rent-charge was said to be from land in Grove Road, Handsworth.
By the Scheme of 1890 the charities were to be administered by a single body of trustees, and the income, after payments to the rector and the choir, was to be distributed in donations to hospitals and provident societies, payments for outfits for young persons, and grants in kind and in money to the poor. By a further Scheme of 1917, payments were also to be made, in accordance with the wishes of Joseph Grice, to the organist and the beadle of the parish church and a further payment to the rector. The residue was to be distributed in pensions of 7s. to 10s. a week to poor, aged persons, for the general benefit of the poor, and in the ways set out in the 1890 Scheme. The gross income of the charities was £327 8s. 9d. in 1917, and £815 11s. 2d. in 1956, when, after payments to the rector and others, £600 were distributed in pensions and £72 in other forms to the poor.(1, 2)
Harborne Parochial Charities.
By will dated 1576 Elizabeth Cowper or Piddock gave £40 for the purchase of land, the income from which was to be used for charitable purposes. By a deed of 1591 the land so bought was vested in trustees, the income to be used in the distribution of 20s. yearly to the poor of Harborne and Smethwick and the residue to other poor people. In 1823 the income amounted to £26. An inscription in St. Martin's Church, Birmingham, recorded that Elizabeth Piddock had given by will 20s. yearly to the people of Birmingham, but it was thought in 1827 that this referred to part of the sums distributed to poor people without limit of place by the trustees of her Harborne charity.
By a trust deed of 1623 William Cowper or Piddock gave property in Oldbury (Salop.), 6s. 8d. of the income to be distributed to the poor of Handsworth and the residue to the poor of Smethwick and Harborne. In 1823 it was said that no rent had been received from the property for many years, but arrangements were then being made for the occupier to pay it, and for its proper distribution when received.
The first trust deed mentioned of the Parish Lands was of 1699. The trust deed of 1816 gave details of lands in Harborne and Smethwick, the income from which was to be used in the payment of £10 for apprenticing four poor children and the residue for the poor. In 1823 the rents amounted to £143 9s., which were divided equally between Harborne and Smethwick. Of the Harborne portion, £5 were set aside each year for apprenticeships. The charity included thirteen cottages, nine in Harborne and four in Smethwick, occupied by poor people free of rent and repairs. The residue was distributed in occasional payments to poor people.
By will dated 1715 William Jephcote was said to have given an annuity of £2 12s. to be distributed weekly to four poor people; by deed of 1719, Dorothy Parkes gave property in Smethwick, part of the income to be used in buying bread for twelve poor people and coats for three poor women of Harborne; and by will of 1819 Thomas Rutter gave £100, later invested in land, the income from which was to be distributed to six poor widows at Christmas.
By the middle of the 19th century these charities, together with those for the parochial school (see p. 535), were being administered by the Vicar and churchwardens of Harborne as Harborne Parish Lands. After complaints of maladministration, the appointment of trustees was regulated by a Chancery Scheme of 1860. In the second half of the century the income of the charities was considerably increased by the granting of building leases and the general development of the estates. By a Scheme of 1885 the charities were formally united; of the income, £35 were to be used for educational purposes, between £10 and £18 for each of the fifteen almspeople, and the residue for poor people of Harborne in various ways. The educational fund was determined to be a separate foundation by an Order of 1908.
The almshouses, nine of which were in Harborne, were declared to be insanitary in 1899, and in 1901 twelve new almshouses were built in War Lane, Harborne. Three more houses and a matron's house were added in 1912 and the six almspeople from Smethwick were moved there. Discussion and controversy in the parish about the affairs of the charity continued, and it was found necessary to make further provision for the appointment of trustees and to revise the methods of distribution by a Scheme of 1918. In 1924 it was said that the income was £1,100 and was increasing so rapidly that it was likely to double in a few years. In 1927 ten and in 1930 six almshouses, and a matron's house, were built in Cooper's Lane, Smethwick, for the charity from a fund founded in memory of Henry Mitchell.
Further sums have been given to the Parochial Charities by George Moyse (1873, for bread for the poor), Jane Round (1904, drapery for poor people), Ellen Wood (1931, clothing, blankets, and coal to poor widows) and Hannah Long (1937, for the poor). In 1952 the total income of the Parochial Charities was £3,300.(2, 1, 6)
Hazlemere House of Residence.
Birmingham and District Baptist Women's League acquired Hazlemere, 10 St. Agnes Road, Moseley, after the Second World War, and in 1946 put it in trust as a home for elderly women who, because of age, infirmity or insufficient means, were unable entirely to support themselves. It was intended that the women should be of 'the higher income group' who would be able to pay a charge. Accommodation was provided for thirteen women, the first of whom took up residence in 1947. By 1958 there were fifteen residents.(1, 7)
George Hill's Charity.
By a trust deed of 1678 George Hill gave property in Sutton Coldfield, the income to be used in the distribution of twelve loaves weekly to the poor of Birmingham, in the payment of £1 yearly to a person preaching in Deritend chapel, and the residue to five poor and learned dissenters, under the supervision of the governors of the Free School. In 1827 the annual income was and had been for many years £10, but might have been £30 or £40; payments to dissenting ministers from the residue had ceased in 1779 and those for bread in 1814. New trustees were to be elected in 1827 and the accumulated surplus invested. In 1872-4 it was said that £2 12s. were distributed in bread and £55 6s. 7d. to dissenting ministers.
By a Scheme of 1875 the payments of £1 and £2 12s. were to continue, but the residue was to be distributed in pensions of up to £20 a year to former schoolmasters or mistresses. In 1908 the endowment was divided, £40 being transferred to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for the benefice of St. John's, Deritend, £106 becoming the endowment of George Hill's Charity for the Poor, and the residue forming George Hill's Educational Foundation. In 1952 the income of the Charity for the Poor was £2 13s., which was distributed in bread. (3, 5, 1, 6)
By will dated 1911 Annie Hillel gave £2,000 in trust for the provision of free meals or assistance to needy children or to poor people of Birmingham. In 1952 the income of £98 12s. 8d. was distributed as directed.(6)
Mary Hipkins and John Littlehales's Charities.
By will proved 1846 Mary Hipkins gave £100, the income from which was to be distributed in coals or blankets to the poor of Erdington. By will proved in 1911 John Littlehales gave £500, the income to be distributed to the poor of Erdington. This legacy was invested in £600 10s. 10d. stock. Both charities are applied as directed.(9)
James Hirons Memorial Convalescent Home.
By will proved 1941 James Hirons gave his residuary estate in trust for the establishment of a convalescent home for poor men of Birmingham or Coventry, to be known as the James Hirons Memorial Convalescent Home. The charity held £191,140 stock in 1952, when a house in Leamington Spa was acquired for conversion into a convalescent home. After being modernized and enlarged, the home was opened in 1954. In 1958 there were 20 beds.(1, 14)
C. B. and A. B. Holinsworth Fund of Help.
By will proved in 1933 C. B. Holinsworth gave a residuary sum to be divided equally between the Birmingham Citizens Society and the Birmingham New Hospital Council (from 1936 onwards the Birmingham Hospitals Council), the income to be used for charitable purposes. Each fund ultimately received more than £21,000 stock. The Birmingham Council of Social Service has administered the Citizens Society fund since it succeeded that body in 1947 and has applied the income to its general charitable work. The hospitals' fund was administered by the Hospitals Council until 1946, when the council came to an end as a result of the National Health Service Act, and then by a body of trustees appointed by a Scheme of 1951. A Scheme of 1955 defined the objects of this fund as the furtherance of the work of any voluntary hospital in or near Birmingham, the relief of the sick, and the benefit of poor people recovering from an illness or in need of rest and a change of air.(1, 6, 11)
Under the will of Elizabeth Hollier dated 1790 land in the parish of Aston was by deeds of the same year vested in trustees, the income to be used in the purchase of clothing for twelve or more poor people of Birmingham and eight or more of Aston. In 1827 the income was £52 10s., which was being used to buy 16 coats, 40 gowns, 40 shifts, and some other clothing. In 1862 the income was said to be £66, and 10 coats, 50 gowns, and 50 petticoats were being bought.
From 1862 to 1876 there were continual appeals by petitions and by public bodies in Birmingham for the utilization of the charity's land for a park and for other public purposes. The trustees were inclined to sell the land for commercial development. In 1873 the town clerk wrote 'the charity land . . . is situated on the slope of a hill, being the highest point on the southern side of the borough, and commands an extensive prospect over the town and neighbourhood; and the council view with apprehension the proposal to cover it with buildings as the only opportunity of preserving an open space, and of obtaining a place of exercise and recreation in the midst of this densely populated neighbourhood would be lost for ever'. The land was sold to the corporation in 1876 for £8,100; the greater part of it became Highgate Park, and part was acquired by the school board for the site of Moseley Road Board School (see p. 524).
By a Scheme of 1875 the income of the charity was to be expended in fixed proportions on clothing for twelve poor persons of Birmingham and eight of Aston, on assistance to former lunatics, and on the support of dispensaries, hospitals, and sanatoria. In 1918 the proportions in which the increased income was to be distributed were revised. The income in 1956 was £295 13s. 2d. from investments of £11,826 11s. 7d., and it was expended in £29 11s. 8d. for clothing and in donations to five hospitals. What changes had been made necessary by the National Health Service and National Assistance Acts were being considered by the trustees in 1957.(3, 1)
The Holte and Bracebridge Almshouses.
By will dated 1650 Sir Thomas Holte directed his trustees to erect an almshouse near Aston Vicarage for ten poor, old people, five men and five women, of the parish of Aston. He also gave a rent-charge of £88 for the endowment of the almshouses and for the payment of 2s. 6d. a week to each almsperson. The almshouses were built as directed. By a deed of 1860 W. H. Bracebridge and his wife, and C. H. Bracebridge, descendants of the Holte family (see p. 60), gave property adjoining the almshouses to augment the original endowment and to increase the weekly stipend to 3s. The rent-charge of £88 was redeemed in 1865 and ground rents in Birmingham bought in 1866. The old almshouses were sold and new almshouses erected in Erdington in 1930. In 1958 the annual income was about £800, and the weekly stipends were of 5s. (4, 9, 10)
The Hook Memorial Homes.
By deed of 1928 Maria Hook gave £100 to create a trust fund for the building of almshouses in Birmingham, to be known as the Hook Memorial Homes, for spinsters of the labouring classes of Birmingham, provision being made for the payment of stipends. By her will of 1936 she gave the residue of her estate, which amounted to some £20,000, to this fund. A suitable site was not found in Birmingham, and the ten almshouses were built in Whitehouse Common Road, Sutton Coldfield, in 1939-40 and opened in 1940. In 1952 the income of the charity was £530, and weekly stipends of 6s. were paid to the almswomen. (1, 6)
By deed of 1691 property in Sutton Coldfield, bought with £200 given to the poor of Birmingham by will of Joseph Hopkins, dated 1681, was vested in trustees, the income to be used in the purchase of coats and gowns for four poor men and four poor women annually, and the residue to be distributed in money and bread to the poor. This deed apparently never came into effect, but it was said in a trust deed of 1746 that the income had always been used in the purchase of clothes for poor people. In 1827 the income was £37 10s., and it was regularly used in the purchase of some sixty gowns for women. The income was £44 in 1902. Between about 1928 and 1934 the income was increased to about £240 by the granting of building leases, and was normally used in the purchase of clothing. In 1957 the income was £25 1s. 10d. from stock and £316 3s. 4d. from rent; £180 were spent that year in the purchase of clothing, and there was an accumulated surplus of £316 10s. 11d.(3, 1, 6)
Joshua Horton Fund.
By will proved 1893 Joshua Horton gave £1,000 for the benefit of widows over 60 in the parish of St. James, Handsworth, in money, clothing, food, or otherwise. In 1927 the income from £919 10s. stock was £32 3s. 4d., and 25s. were given to each of 25 widows.(1)
Thomas Ingram's Trust.
By a codicil to his will dated 1816 Thomas Ingram gave in trust £600, the income to be used in payments for sermons or lectures to be given in Birmingham setting out the arguments for merciful treatment of animals, especially horses; any residue was to be distributed to societies or institutions for the welfare of animals. The income was £21 6s. 10d. in 1827, and it was regularly applied to the purpose of the charity, twelve such sermons being preached in 1825. In 1933 when the income from £680 8s. annuities was £14 17s. 4d., £20 were given in donations to charitable societies.(3, 1)
Joseph Isaacs's Charity.
Joseph Isaacs (d. 1949) by will gave £100 to Birmingham Corporation, 'the interest of which is to be devoted to such charitable purpose as the Lord Mayor for the time being may decide'. The annual income of £3 is distributed to charitable institutions.(6, 12)
George Jackson's Charity.
By will dated 1696 George Jackson gave property in Deritend in trust, the income to be used in putting out poor boys of Birmingham as apprentices. In 1827 the property was held at an annual rent of £6 and this income was regularly applied in apprenticing about two boys each year. By a Scheme of 1885 part of the income might also be used in providing scholarships for technical and industrial instruction to Birmingham boys; by an Order of 1906 this part was to be known as 'George Jackson's Educational Foundation'. In 1942 more than £1,285 of accumulated income were also determined to be applicable for educational purposes. Because of continued difficulty in finding applicants for the scholarship the income of the whole charity was in 1950 made applicable to the provision of exhibitions to enable students of the Birmingham College of Arts and Crafts to travel abroad. In 1958 the income was £102 7s. and two exhibitions of £50 each were provided annually.(3, 6, 10)
The James Charities.
By a deed of 1869 Elizabeth and Emma James gave in trust land next to St. Clement's Church, Nechells, on which almshouses were built, and other property, the income from which was to provide for a scholarship to a university, for annuities to five poor gentlewomen, weekly payments to the almspeople, and the residue to be used to enlarge the almshouses. Another piece of land was given in 1875 and six more almshouses were built on it. The site was further extended in 1876; in 1886 part of it was given for the building of St. Clement's Church Hall. In 1897 the income was £695 2s. 8d., of which £451 4s. 8d. were distributed in allowances to 39 almspeople and £40 in two annuities; it was proving difficult to provide adequately for both purposes. By will proved in 1897 Elizabeth James gave on reversion £5,000, the income to provide annuities for widows with children or for aged or invalid women, £2,500 in trust for the almshouses, and other residuary sums for these purposes.
In 1900 the two charities were amalgamated in a single Scheme. The income was to be expended on the maintenance and administration of the almshouses, weekly stipends to the almspeople, grants of £12 a year to not more than ten poor women or widows, and £20 a year to not more than five poor gentlewomen. The scholarship trust was determined to be a separate educational endowment in 1908.
The property of the charity in 1900 included the Atlas Works in Paradise Street and Edmund Street, the Woodman Inn, Easy Row, and other shops and houses in the same area, with a total annual value of £920; there was also an income of £238 16s. from £8,684 6s. 2d. stock. There was an accumulated surplus of £2,317 10s. 5d. by 1909, and 4 more almshouses were built. There were 33 almspeople in 1946.(1)
The Howell James Charities.
By a deed of 1869 it was declared that the income from a sum of £300, known as the Howell James Charity, should be distributed in money or in bread to the sick or aged poor of the parish of St. Clement, Nechells. The charity is distributed as directed.
By deed of 1893 Elizabeth James gave £305 9s. in trust for the sick and poor of the parish of St. Mary, Birmingham, the income to be distributed on 23 January each year; the charity was also to be known as the Howell James Charity. In 1925 the income was being distributed in money, food and medical assistance at Christmas. By a Scheme of 1926 the charity was to be administered for the inhabitants of the area of the former parish by the Vicar and churchwardens of Bishop Ryder's parish, in which St. Mary's had been merged.(1, 9)
Richard Kilcuppe's Charity.
By will dated 1610 Richard Kilcuppe or Field gave property in Bordesley in trust for charitable uses. By deed of 1613 the property was settled in trust so that from the income 10s. should be paid towards the repair of bridges and roads in Bordesley and the residue used for the relief of poor, old people. In 1835 10s. were paid to the surveyor of the highways and most of the remaining £26 distributed to the poor. A Scheme of 1872 authorized the expenditure of the income upon contributions to various hospitals and to the General Dispensary. In 1952 grants were being made to the General Dispensary and to other charitable bodies; the annual income was then about £141.(4, 9, 6)
Alfred Leadbeater Trust.
By will proved 1923 Alfred Leadbeater, in addition to gifts to various hospitals, gave residuary and reversionary sums, the income to be distributed to medical institutions or charities and to children's homes, in Birmingham and elsewhere. Payments were made from 1926 onwards, but the principal reversionary sums did not accrue to the trust until 1943. There was then a total of £25,146 14s. 2d. stock and an income of £1,427 19s. 7d. from stock and rents, of which, after certain other payments, £944 9s. were available for distribution. In 1952 the trust fund amounted to about £45,000 and the income was distributed to charities primarily connected with the welfare of children.(1, 6)
By a trust deed of 1526 William Lench gave his property, later known as Lench's Lands, in Birmingham, Aston, Bordesley, Little Bromwich and Saltley, the profits to be devoted after his and his wife's deaths to charitable purposes. By a trust deed of 1540 made after their deaths, the income was to be devoted to the repair of ways and bridges in and about Birmingham (see p. 31) and the residue to the poor.
By will dated 1566 William Colmore gave a rent-charge of 10s. from a messuage in Birmingham to the trustees of Lench's Lands, 5s. of which were to be used in the repair of roads and 5s. for the poor. By a trust deed of 1584 John Vesey added to Lench's Lands a close called Loveday Croft in Birmingham, the income to be used for the same purposes. By will dated 1568 William Wrixam gave to trustees a tenement in Birmingham, the income to be distributed to the poor; the trustees were apparently also the trustees of Lench's Trust. By deed of 1518 Thomas Redhill and Henry Shilton gave a croft called Woodcock's Croft in Duddeston to William Colmore and others. No purposes were mentioned but the gift was called a charity, and by trust deed of 1554 William Colmore arranged for the income to be distributed in the same way as Lench's Trust.
As the result of an inquisition taken in 1628, a Commission of Charitable Uses ordered that a single body of trustees be enfeoffed with the five properties, the income to be distributed in accordance with the terms of the grants.
By a trust deed of 1573 John Ward gave his property in Bickenhill, the income to be distributed to the poor of Birmingham. By will dated in 1610 Richard Kilcuppe, q.v., gave in trust land in Bordesley for charitable uses in Birmingham; by a deed of 1612 the income was to be devoted to the relief of the poor of Birmingham, and the repair of the parish church. As the result of charitable gifts by John Shelton and others, property in Moor Street and Walmer Lane was acquired by a deed of 1654, the income to be disposed of for the benefit of the poor of Birmingham.
By a trust deed of 1668 the lands of Lench's Trust were vested in new trustees, and to them were added the lands of Ward's and Kilcuppe's charities, the charity of John Shelton and others, an almshouse and its appurtenances, and a croft called Bell-rope Croft. No earlier deeds of the two latter properties have been recorded; the almshouse, probably that at Digbeth, had been first mentioned in the accounts of the trust in 1639, having apparently come into the hands of the trust since 1628. In 1789 it was said that the income from Bell-rope Croft was to be paid to the churchwardens of St. Martin's for the purchase and maintenance of the bell-ropes of that church.
By a deed of 1808 it was said that property in Whittall Lane, or Steelhouse Lane, and Upper Priory had been purchased by the trustees with a sum of £630 given by Ann Scott, the income to be distributed to the inhabitants of the almshouses administered by the trust. By a deed of 1821, the property of the trust together with that purchased with Ann Scott's gift was vested in new trustees.
A second set of almshouses was built by the trust in Steelhouse Lane in 1688. Both this and the Digbeth set were abandoned, and new almshouses built on a site adjoining the old one in Steelhouse Lane in 1764. Further almshouses were built in Dudley Street in 1801 and in Park Street in 1815 and 1820.
In 1827 the trust paid an average of £8 13s. 4d. in respect of the Bell-rope and Kilcuppe's charities to the churchwardens of St. Martin's, £6 to the overseers of St. Martin's (a payment which the commissioners recommended should be discontinued), £227 14s. for repair of the streets, £140 to the almswomen and £70 for the maintenance of the almshouses, leaving a regular surplus which had until 1824 been spent on repaying the loans on almshouses and improving the property of the trust. The surplus of 1824-7 was to be spent on building another set of almshouses in Hospital Street; these were completed in 1829 with the help of the legacies of Judith, Mary and Sarah Mansell. Distributions of money to poor people, other than the almswomen, had not been made since 1802.
In 1846-8 the Dudley Street almshouses were sold to the London and North-Western Railway and new almshouses were built in Ravenhurst Street; in 1859 the Park Street almshouses were replaced by those in Ladywood Road; and in 1880 the Steelhouse Lane almshouses were replaced by a set built on a more ambitious scale in Conybeare Street.
As the result of the renewal of leases the income of the charity was increased by £1,500, and in 1882 it was found necessary to embody general regulations for the administration of the charity in a Scheme. By it the many charities administered by the trust were consolidated under the name of Lench's Trust. The street repairing functions of the trust had disappeared and the bell-rope charity became a separate endowment in 1881. Though the objects of most of the original charities had not been so limited, the beneficiaries of the trust were to be poor necessitous women of Birmingham. The stipends paid to the almswomen were to be 4s. to 8s. weekly. A Scheme of 1915 made possible the payment of pensions of 4s. to 10s. a week to poor women other than the almswomen, and in 1921 the upper limit of stipends and pensions was raised to 10s. 6d. and 15s. respectively.
In 1936 there were 185 almswomen, 52 permanent and 38 temporary pensioners. It was considered that the provision of almshouses was a more satisfactory form of assistance to poor women than pensions, and it was decided to build two new sets of almshouses. By a Scheme of 1939 the Hospital Street almshouses were to be sold and replaced by new almshouses in Ridgeacre Road. The beginning of the Second World War however prevented the proper execution of the Scheme. In 1940 the Hospital Street almshouses were bombed and only half the almswomen evacuated could be accommodated at the partially completed Ridgeacre Road premises. Both the Conybeare Street and the Ravenhurst Street almshouses were also bombed, one almswoman being killed in each. The Hospital Street site was sold in 1943, and the Ridgeacre Road almshouses were completed. In 1947 there were 180 almshouse places, and it was said that the trust was in a difficult financial position. In 1952 the income was £8,500 and there were 192 almswomen.(3, 8, 1, 6)
James Lloyd Almshouses.
By deed of 1869 Mrs. Elmira Lloyd gave £1,000 and certain property for the endowment of the almshouses which she was proposing to build. The almshouses, for 25 almswomen, were shortly after erected in Belgrave Road, Balsall Heath, and were named in memory of the benefactress's husband. They were to be for needy women of Birmingham and district not of the pauper class. By deed of 1889 Mrs. Lloyd added a further £750 to the endowment. In 1928 the income from rents was about £160 and from stock £70. Part of the property was sold in 1938 for £610 and a sum of £400 of accumulated surplus income invested at the same time. The income was being fully expended on the maintenance of the almshouses in 1957.(1)
The Lord Mayor's Benevolent Fund.
By will dated 1902 Thomas Evans gave his residuary estate in trust, the income to be distributed annually by the Lord Mayor of Birmingham to charitable societies and institutions in Birmingham. In 1952 the income of the charity was £725, which was distributed as directed.(6)
The Magdalen Asylum And Mrs. Lloyd's Charity.
An association for the establishment of a Magdalen Asylum was formed in 1828 and premises in Islington were acquired in 1829. It was 'to be a temporary asylum for women, fallen into habits of vice, who profess themselves penitent'. A new site was bought at Rotton Park in 1861 and the new buildings opened in the following year.
By a deed of 1869 Mrs. Elmira Lloyd (see above) gave £2,000, the income to be used for the benefit of the inmates of the refuge and probationary ward of the home. In 1920 the Magdalen Home Trust amalgamated with the Association for the Rescue and Training of Young Women to form the Birmingham Association for Unmarried Mothers and their Babies, and the home (formerly known as Kirkholme) became, as Hope Lodge, the principal home of the new association. Hope Lodge was closed in 1954 but the work of the association continued, and by a Scheme of 1954 Mrs. Lloyd's charity was to be used for the benefit of poor, unmarried women of Birmingham before, during and immediately after childbirth.(1)
Sir Josiah Mason's Almshouses And School.
By deed of 1868 Josiah Mason endowed with property the almshouses and the orphanage which he had built in Erdington for poor women and poor children of the district (see p. 49). By a Scheme of 1910 separate trusts were created for the two institutions; of the annual income, £400 were to form the endowment of the almshouses, £75 the endowment of a fund to assist former female inmates of the orphanage, and the remainder the endowment of the orphanage. By a Scheme of 1937 the trustees of the orphanage were directed to transfer to the almshouse trustees a site and the money necessary to rebuild the almshouses, and the endowment of the almshouses from the annual income was increased to £700. The orphanage is run as a boarding school for orphans and for children with unsatisfactory homes (see p. 546).(9, 6)
The Muntz Trust.
By deed of 1890 G. F. Muntz gave £21,000, the income to be distributed among voluntary hospitals and medical institutions. As a result of the National Health Service Act the institutions which had been benefiting from the charity became public, but discussions on revising the objects of the charity had come to no conclusion by 1950. In 1956 the income from investments of £19,881 17s. 4d. was £616 5s. 10d., and £650 were distributed to six voluntary charitable organizations. (1)
Eliza O'Neill's Charity.
By will proved 1847 Eliza O'Neill gave £50, the income to be used for the poor of the parish of St. James, Edgbaston. The legacy was invested in £44 5s. 7d. stock and the income is distributed as directed.(9)
W. F. O'Shaughnessy Rest Home For Nurses.
By deed of 1928 Fanny O'Shaughnessy gave to Birmingham Corporation the house called Tower House, Barnt Green, and other land, to be used as a rest home for nurses. The home was maintained by the corporation until 1939 when it was closed because it was being run at a loss. The house was requisitioned during the Second World War and was sold in 1947. By a Scheme of 1950 the proceeds of the sale, £6,374 9s. 8d., were to form W. F. O'Shaughnessy's Rest Fund for Nurses, and the income was to be used in assisting nurses to obtain the benefits of a home of rest or of convalescence.(1)
John Palmer's Bequest.
By will of 1871 John Palmer gave £1,000 to Birmingham Corporation to be invested and used in whatever manner the council might think fit. In 1872 the council decided that the income should be expended in purchasing articles for poor, old people of Birmingham. The annual income was about £51 in 1952.(6, 12)
Eliza Perryman's Charity.
By will proved 1864 R. G. Reeves gave £300, the income to be used in the payment of £5 to the incumbent of St. Luke's and the remainder to the poor people of the district of St. Luke's. In 1936 the investments were £335 4s., and of the income £5 5s. were paid to the vicar and £3 2s. 4d. to the poor.(1)
The Rhodes Almshouses.
By deed of 1873 Matilda Rhodes gave a piece of land in Soho Road on which were to be built fifteen almshouses and a matron's house, and a piece of land adjoining worth £43 6s. 10d. as an endowment. The almshouses were to be for poor, aged women of Birmingham. In 1931 the income of the charity and donations were expended on the upkeep of the almshouses and the payment of £1 to each of 16 almswomen. In 1952 the income from stock and rents was £78 18s. 6d. (1, 6)
Emily Ridell's Charity.
By will proved 1924 Emily Ridell gave residuary sums for the poor of the dioceses of Worcester and Birmingham. After prolonged disagreement about the terms of the will a Scheme of 1935 established two charities, Ridell's (Worcester), and Ridell's (Birmingham) Charity for the Poor, each with an endowment of £1,252 17s. 11d., the income from which was to be distributed in money or kind to poor persons of the dioceses. A further sum of £162 9s. 3d. was received from the testator's estate in 1939. In 1954 the income of the Birmingham charity was £46 17s. 2d., and was distributed in grants to two old and infirm church workers.(1)
William Riley's Charity.
By will proved 1904 William Riley, after a number of charitable gifts, gave his residuary estate for the purchase of land in Birmingham and Leamington for the erection of almshouses, or for the poor. Between 1907 and 1926 sums amounting to more than £11,000 accrued to the charity. By a Chancery Scheme of 1930 the almshouses were to be for residents of Birmingham and Leamington over 60, and weekly or monthly payments might be made to the almspeople. Four almshouses were then being built in Maas Road, Northfield, and two in Leamington. In 1955 the income of £331 16s. 3d. was not being fully expended on the maintenance of the almshouses and payments to the almspeople, and there was a considerable surplus in hand.(1)
Julia Saunders's Charity.
By will proved 1904 Cornelius Saunders gave £200 to be known as the Julia Saunders's Charity, the income of which was to be distributed to twelve poor widows of Handsworth who were members of the Church of England. The sum was invested in £266 17s. 7d. stock. In 1925 the income of £6 13s. 8d. was distributed as directed.(1)
H. J. Sayer Trust.
By will proved 1944 H. J. Sayer gave his residuary estate in trust for charitable institutions and objects in Birmingham. The estate had not been fully realized in 1958 but sums had been distributed to charitable societies for some years, £500 being distributed in 1950-1.(1)
By will proved 1910 Morris Schwerin gave his residuary and reversionary estate in trust for the benefit of the Jewish poor of Birmingham in coal, blankets, bread, and rice. The estate did not revert to the charity until about 1940, and in 1951 the trustees held £3,617 5s. 10d. stock. (1)
Richard Scott's Charity.
By will dated 1694 Richard Scott gave £100 in trust, the income to be disbursed in annual payments of £2 to the nonconformist minister or ministers of the Old Meeting House, Birmingham (see p. 476), or to their widows, and the residue in apprenticing poor boys of Birmingham. No trust deed was made until 1752, when it was said that one of the trustees had kept the money without observing the provisions of the will, and that the principal and interest had only recently been recovered from his executor. Between 1788 and 1820 the sum of £3, and after 1820 of £2, was paid to the ministers, and the residue to apprentices. In 1823 the endowment with accumulated interest was £305.
By a Scheme of 1927 the endowment, together with further large sums of accumulated income, was divided into separate funds for ministers and apprentices, £765 4s. 9d. forming the apprenticing charity. The terms of this charity were at the same time enlarged to give poor boys general assistance in earning their living. In 1934 £19 10s. was distributed in this way. The apprenticing charity was transferred to the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education in 1951.(1, 3)
Mary Sheldon's Charity.
By will proved 1826 Mary Sheldon gave £1,000, the income to be distributed to ten single women of Birmingham. The income in 1827 was £35 16s., and in 1879 £3 10s. was given to each of ten women. It was determined in 1860 that widows as well as spinsters might be eligible for the charity. In 1924 the income was £30 2s. 8d., and £30 were distributed.(3, 1)
William Stevenson's Fund.
By will proved 1908 William Stevenson gave his reversionary and residuary estate in trust, the income to be used to provide pensions of £10 a year for poor blind widows in Handsworth. Sums amounting to £1,700 had been received by the charity by 1914 and the sale of property produced a further £1,223 3s. 9d. in 1919. There were thirteen pensioners in 1932 and eighteen in 1942. By a Scheme of 1923 pensions of from £10 to £25 might be given, and if sufficient widows could not be found might be available to blind spinsters and married women. Nevertheless £1,450 of surplus income was invested between 1925 and 1955, and the normal pension was still £10 in 1955. In 1956 the pensions were increased to £25, but only four women were found with the necessary qualifications. The investments of the charity then amounted to £4,903 7s. 11d. and the gross income to £159 14s.(1)
Sir John Sumner's Trust.
By trust deed of 1927 Sir John Sumner gave over £125,000 and further reversionary sums for general charitable and educational purposes, 'especially for the benefit of deserving persons who, through the handicap of circumstances may possess no adequate provision against infirmity and old age'. The charity is administered in Birmingham. The Colehaven Homes in Coleshill, founded by Sir John Sumner in 1930, are associated with the trust.(6, 11)
By will proved 1928 F. D. Tippetts gave £4,000 in trust, half the income to be used in providing nourishment, nursing and comforts in their own homes for consumptive persons resident in Birmingham, and half similarly for persons suffering from cancer, and £2,000 in trust, both income and capital to be for the benefit of Birmingham ex-servicemen. The latter sum was exhausted in 1940. In 1958 the income from the former sum was £140, which was expended in providing assistance, usually in the form of clothing, for the objects of the charity.(1, 6, 12)
Mary Upfill's Charity.
By will dated 1901 Mary Upfill gave a sum for the foundation of a convalescent home for Birmingham children. The sum of £300 was set aside for this purpose under a deed of arrangement and trust in 1912. By a Scheme of 1939 the trustees were to be appointed by the Birmingham Citizens Society and the income to be used for the provision of convalescent treatment for Birmingham children. The sum then invested was £430. The Birmingham Council of Social Service became the trustees in 1950.(1)
Thomas Warren's Charity.
By will proved 1874 the Revd. Thomas Warren gave £200, the income to be used in repairing his family tomb in St. Bartholomew's Church and the residue in supplying warm clothing to the poor members of the congregation. The first provision was void, and no distribution was made until 1877. In 1923 the income was £5 6s., and, with the addition of accumulated income, £8 2s. 6d. were spent on the purchase of clothing. By a Scheme of 1941 the charity was transferred to Bishop Ryder's parish, in which part of St. Bartholomew's had been merged, for the benefit of the poor of the area of the old parish.(1)
Thomas Welch's Charity.
By will proved 1858 Thomas Welch gave £200, the income to be used for the benefit of the poor of the congregation of St. Luke's in bread or coal. In 1936 the income of £5 1s. 8d. was spent as directed.(1)
John Whittingham's Charity.
By will dated 1846 John Whittingham gave £2,000, the income from which was to be distributed in bread and clothes to the poor of Duddeston and Nechells. By a Scheme of 1880 the income might be applied in general assistance to poor people of those districts. The income of about £75 was applied as directed in 1952.(9, 6)
Sir William Whorwood's Charity.
By will dated 1611 Sir William Whorwood was said to have given £6 12s. each year for ten years, and thereafter £10 yearly out of the tithes of West Bromwich, for distribution to 33 poor persons of West Bromwich and Handsworth. In 1823 the charity was being distributed in sums of 6d. each to 100 poor persons of West Bromwich and 1s. each to 50 poor persons of Handsworth. In 1919 the charge was redeemed for £400, half of which was invested in the name of Sir William Whorwood's Charity in Handsworth and half in that of West Bromwich. By a Scheme of 1920, the trustees of Handsworth Parochial Charities became the trustees of Whorwood's Charity; the income was to be distributed to between 10 and 20 poor people of the parish of St. James, Handsworth, in kind or by temporary relief in money. The average yearly income in 1958 was £5.(2, 1, 10, 6).
Wiggin Cottage Homes.
By deed of 1899 Sir Henry Wiggin gave six cottages off Margaret Road, Harborne, for use as cottage homes for aged and infirm people of Harborne and district, and ground rents for their endowment. By deed of 1900 he gave a further £2,000 for their endowment and for the payment of 5s. a week to each inmate. Walter Wiggin, by will proved 1937, also gave £500 for the endowment of the cottages. A sale of ground rents in 1950 produced £2,200. In 1955 the income from rents was £18 17s. and from stock £182 19s.(1)
Anne Wilkinson's And Julia Baker's Charities.
Anne Wilkinson (d. 1829) by will gave a sum now represented by £144 stock, the income to be divided among twelve poor widows who usually attended service at St. Philip's Church. Julia Baker, who died in 1881, by will gave a sum represented by £190 1s. 5d. stock, the income to be distributed among the poor of the parish of St. Philip. The income of the two charities was about £8 in 1952 and had been distributed for many years to widows, spinsters and poor families of the parish in sums of 5s. to 12s. 6d.(6)
Lost Charities: Aston.
By will proved 1738 the widow of Sir Charles Holte, Bt., bequeathed £400 in trust for the income to be distributed in bread for twelve poor people and for other purposes, as set out in a deed of 1736. No trustees were appointed and it was said in 1835 that the sum seemed never to have been set apart or applied for these purposes, though regular sums were devoted to charitable purposes by the owner of the Aston and Erdington estates. In 1872-4 it was said that the income had once been £20, and was then £44 17s. 3d. from rent-charges, and that it was distributed in bread and clothes.
In a deed of 1771 it was said that Sir Walter Devereux had in 1623 granted to trustees a rent-charge of £4 to be distributed to the poor or their children. The rent-charge was paid to the overseer of Bordesley until 1827. Sir Edward Devereux (d. 1622) gave by will an annuity of 10s. for distribution. The sum was paid until the early 19th century, but in 1875 it was said that no payments were made on behalf of either of these charities.
Sarah Dallaway, by will dated 1820, put in trust all her pews, sittings, and kneelings in the chapel of St. John, Deritend, the rents to be used in providing gowns for poor widows of Deritend. In 1835 24s. were received from the rent of one pew, and were regularly used in the purchase of gowns. In 1872-4 it was said that nothing was apparently then received in respect of the charity.(4, 5)
Lost Charities: Birmingham.
In 1722 Joseph Pemberton is said to have given rent-charges of 40s. from Tamworth and 20s. from Harborne, to be used to buy coats annually for four poor men of Birmingham. In 1827 the payment of 20s. was in arrears but the 40s. were being used to buy two coats. In 1872-4 it was said that nothing was apparently received in respect of either rent-charge.
An inscription in St. Martin's Church recorded that John Cooper gave a croft for charitable purposes in Birmingham. In 1827 it was thought that this might be the Loveday Croft added to Lench's Trust by John Vesey, who was perhaps only a trustee. Other inscriptions recorded that Edward Smith gave £20 in 1612 for the poor, Barnaby Smith gave £20 in 1633 for loans to poor tradesmen, Catherine Roberts gave £2 10s. in 1642 for the poor, John Jennings in 1651 gave £2 10s. annually for coats and 20s. annually for the poor, and Richard Smallbrook gave 10s. annually for the poor. In 1827 it was thought that the first three or four of these charities might be included with that of Shelton in Lench's Trust.(3, 5)
Lost Charities: Handsworth.
It was said in 1823 that Elizabeth Piddock in her will of 1576 had given £40 for the poor of Handsworth and that William Piddock distributed 20s. annually there, but it seems probable that there had been confusion with Elizabeth Piddock's Harborne charity, q.v., and with the sum of 20s. distributed by it to poor people without limit of place.
By will dated 1617 William Hodgetts gave a rentcharge of 6s. 8d. for the poor of Handsworth; Harry Cooke, by will dated 1637, gave 40s. annually for distribution in Handsworth; Henry Willies, by will dated 1659, gave £4 for the poor of Handsworth and Perry Barr; Henry Brown, by will dated 1681, gave 10s. annually to be distributed to 20 poor families of Handsworth. None of these charities was in existence in 1823, but some of them may have been merged with the Poor's Lands.(2)