On their marriage in 1621, Sir Edward and Lady Margaret Hungerford chose to live in Corsham House (now Corsham Court). In 1665 Lady Margaret bought 4 acres of land at her gate. On this site she built a large schoolroom and Master’s house together with six Almshouses, for the poor and needy.

Constructed according to Lady Margaret’s instructions the site offers a prime example of 17th Century social provision. Her 45 ordinances throw light on the way of life of the poor some 350 years ago.

Today, the building stands almost exactly as it was built, with its ornate carvings and built-in furniture still intact. The schoolroom benches and pulpit are unaltered.

Visit the schoolroom and look for the carved graffiti left by the naughty school boys and stand on the balcony and imagine the sound of daily prayers and sermons. Take the time to read Lady Margaret’s 45 Ordinances. Failure to obey these rules would have lead to expulsion.

Opening times

For up to date opening times and admission charges, please visit the Almshouses website.

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