Acc NoCR2366
DescriptionWarwickshire Reformatory for Girls, latterly known as Knowle Hill School, Kenilworth; case files; minutes, accounts, correspondence and other records.
Administrative HistoryThis institution was opened as a reformatory school for girls at Tile Hill, Coventry, in 1856, following the Youthful Offenders Act of 1854 (introduced by C.P. Adderley, later Lord Norton), which authorised the establishment of reformatories for convicted criminals and allowed voluntary reformatories to receive and detain juveniles convicted of criminal offences. The Treasury was empowered to contribute towards maintenance and the reformatory required a certificate of approval from the Secretary of State before it could receive juveniles from the courts. The courts were empowered to sentence young persons under 16 to a period of detention between two and five years (in the 1890s this was raised to between three and five years) in a reformatory in lieu of imprisonment. During detention the offender was to be taught a trade. The school at Tile Hilll moved to Little Park St., Coventry in 1869, to a building given by Richard Groves of Warwick. This building was condemned in 1904 and the girls were transferred to other institutions. Upon this, a site in Kenilworth, valued at £500, was offered by Mr. Smith-Ryland, together with a donation of a further £500. The County Council voted £1000 and with other donations offered, plans were drawn up by Mr. Charles Armstrong, architect of Warwick, and the building contract given to Mr. Hope of Berkswell. The new building, which opened on 2nd November 1906, could take fifty girls. Reformatory schools were abolished in 1933 when Knowle Hill became an Approved School and was under total Government control, the expenditure in administration being shared between central Government and the Local Authority. Following more recent changes the school was placed under the Department of Health and Social Security, being designated as a community home or school, with educational facilities. It closed in 1985.
Access StatusAvailable for general access
Closed Until01/01/2082
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