I recently received an email from Liz Randall who lives in Somerset. She had come across the blog post about Panteg Hospital at Panteg Hospital, Pontypool and “Retlas” revealed.
She also told me that she had some photographs of the hospital so I asked permission to use them as another blog post. I publish both email and photographs below.
“ My grandparents were Percy and Agnes Randall, Master and Matron of the Pontypool Union Workhouse at Coedrig House, Griffithstown from 1910 to 1925, including the period during the first world war when it was turned over to an auxilliary military hospital for the war wounded. My grandfather committed suicide while in the job at New Year 1925/6, probably the reason my father never talked about the workhouse or his father. Actually, he was hardly there after he reached school-age, having been sent to Warwick to live with his grandfather.
All I know about my grandparents’ time running the workhouse has been gleaned at the county records office, from newspapers which published regular reports of the Board of Guardians’ meetings.
I would very much like to know more about the time when the institution was an auxiliary military hospital in WW1. I was told the official records no longer exist, so am reliant on other sources. Do you know of any, please?
I have a few photos of Griffithstown workhouse which I found in my grandmother’s document box:
1. The kitchen; no date. I guess sometime between 1914-17 because
my father, the dark-suited boy, looks about 8 (he was born in 1907).
My grandmother, Matron, on the left.
2. My aunt Edith Randall aged 4 with ‘Nanny Chamberlain’ in 1923
3. General view of the workhouse with the river in the foreground;
no date, though sometime between 1910 and 1925.
4. Master and Matron, seated, with men dressed for, I guess,
a pierrot show; no date, though sometime between 1910 and 1925.
5. Either dining room or chapel, decorated for Christmas 1912.
My own guess about picture 5 is that it might have served a dual purpose as both a dining room and a chapel as there is an organ, front left, and a piano, front right. Notice also the poster, bottom centre, “Glory to God in the highest”. The small white notice on the top point of the star says “Menu, Christmas 1912″.
As you will see above, Liz is keen to find out more information about the hospital. If you recognise anyone in the photographs or have any relevant information please make a comment and share it with all the visitors to this blog.
If, for some personal reason, you would prefer to share your information with Liz instead of making a comment then please email me and I will ask permission to give you her email.