Place image here
Place image here


Rochdale Cottage Homes


Opened in Wardle in 1899 (according to the minutes of the Guardians), there were ten semi-detached two-storey cottages for children arranged along a short street.


The homes closed during the Second World War and the buildings have since been demolished.


The following are quotes from former residents about the homes (taken from


"I was a child in the Cottage Homes in 1930s. the homes were requisitioned in 1939 when war broke out .I was in No 10 and was the last child in the homes when they closed. We went to St Mary's school in Littleborough as we were Catholics."

"There were 10 Cottages in all. We had great fun going to school through fields and there was a brook we used to jump from one side to the other. All of us had jobs to do after school - shoe cleaning, potato peeling, cleaning brass door knobs etc, we did the jobs in rota so all of us had equal amounts. Mother taught us to knit and sew, we mended our own socks. I look back now and know that all the things we did were a preparation for going into service which was the expected thing when we left. I can't remember the exact time the home closed but it wasn't at the beginning of the war because we had evacuees from the Channel Islands."


" I was in the Cottage Homes somewhere around the 1939/1940. I remember going to school inside the home and then I was fostered out. Unfortunately, I got shipped back to the home and it had then converted to a remand home. I was the only boy allowed out to school and subsequently out to work as an apprentice at Tweedale & Smalley."


Do you have memories of being in the homes? We'd love to hear from you.





We have received the following information from the Local Studies Centre in Rochdale.


"We have the following records:

Rochdale Union Statement of Accounts from October 1904 to October 1908 – this lists the names of all the children maintained in the Cottage Homes. (We do not have any of these records between 1898 and Sept 1904 or after Oct 1908)

Rochdale Union Minutes of Proceedings from October 1899 to March 1930 (The Final Minute Book) - this lists the statistics of how many children were being maintained but there are no names.  However it does contain in the Minutes of Cottage Homes Committee instances where there was an application for a child to be maintained or returned to the custody of the parent and the name of the child is stated.

Yes, users from your website can apply via email to:

They would need to supply as many details as possible for our Local Studies Team to look through the records eg: the name of the individual we are to search for and a date range of years ie between 1906 to 1909 - any more than a 3 year date range is not possible due to staff time. Users are very welcome to visit The Local Studies Centre which is in Touchstones Museum, Rochdale.  We are open Tuesdays to Saturdays 10.00am to 5.00pm."


And see our section on Accessing records