Children of the Scattered Homes
Clare Jenkins uses the resources of the Sheffield Archive, social media and newspapers to track down the children of the 'scattered homes' - a pioneering scheme, begun in 1893, to take poor children over three years old out of the workhouse and bring them up in homes scattered across the city.
Clare researches the history of the system and talks to descendents of those children adopted by the Sheffield Guardians . She looks at their school reports and finds out what happened to the children after they left their 'scattered home'.
The system was called 'utopian' by the Victorians, and copied all over Britain. It was seen as a successful way of removing the children away from the pauperisation effects of the workhouse - but the children were often parted from their parents just because they were poor.
Clare discovers how to research recent history as she tracks down the stories of the children of the scattered homes and learns of their fate.
Producer: Janet Graves
A Pennine production for BBC Radio 4.