“This is all Bosh!” 1893 Election Poster

13 March 2015


Loughborough resident Adrian Bailey was renovating his home in Fearon Street a few years ago when he found an election leaflet from 1893. It was printed by H Wills of Market Place, for C J Isaac, ‘the People’s Provider’ of the Consumers Tea Company.  It is addressed to the ‘Ratepayers of Loughborough’ and asks for support in the election of guardians to the Union Workhouse in Regent Street.

Mr Isaac offers himself for election on the grounds that he is the ‘only independent candidate’.  Standing ‘simply as a Tradesman and a Ratepayer’, he dismisses the claims of the two main parties (Conservative and Liberal) that they wish to avoid the costs of an election as ‘bosh and nonsense’. He also reminds readers that he supplies ‘the Cheap Loaf’ and ‘Groceries and Provisions at the Lowest Possible Prices’.

Adrian believes that the Consumers Tea Company stood on the corner of the Swan Street and Biggin Street, where a slot machine casino now stands.  The original building was probably demolished when the High Street was widened in the 1920s.

The Loughborough Union Workhouse was a large and important building set in extensive grounds to the south of Derby Road.

According  to the informative website of Peter Higginbotham, the Loughborough Poor Law Union officially came into existence in 1838 and was overseen by an elected board of twenty-eight ‘guardians’ representing twenty-four parishes across North Leicestershire and South Nottinghamshire. The original structure accommodated 350 inmates and was built in 1838 at a cost of £6,550.  It was extended in 1874 at a cost of £535.  The Union Workhouse became a Public Assistance Institution in the 1930s and was renamed Hastings House, and later Regent Hospital, which continued as an old people’s home and hospital until its closure in the late 1980s.  The building was then demolished.

Please contact us if you have any memories, pictures, or family stories about the workhouse or the old peoples’ home that it became.

Click here to find a list of inmates of the 1881 Loughborough Workhouse.