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The Speedwell Convalescence Home Marlston, Near Thatcham, Early 1900s

The Speedwell Convalescence Home was less than 3 miles to the north of Thatcham, ( The house still stands on the Malston Rd, to the east of Hermitage, near WellHouse)
In the early 1900's the Convalescent Home are taking in ladies 18 - 30 from nearby Reading, I am only getting a snippet of information from the census. The patients seem to be from the factories of Reading (Huntley and Palmers Biscuit Factory ?). I have checked for the obvious and do not believe they are in the family way as I cannot find any births recorded. They could be suffering from an health problem picked up in the Factory or a general illness of the time. Their time at the convalescent home seems to me to be be paid for by their employer.

Any help or guidance of where to look for information, gratefully received.

David Hammond


I have just found a reference to a convalescent home founded by Arthur Sutton of Sutton seeds somewhere in the parish of Bucklebury, (see Victoria County History). This sounds very probable to me.

Given that George William Palmer lived at Marlston House it does seem possible that there w as some connection. There is a book on the economic history of Huntley Palmers at the Berkshire Record Office. It is much more interesting than it sounds and includes much more than facts and figures. If the company was contributing financially it may well be mentioned. Otherwise the Univerity of Reading hold various records relating to the company that may also help. Most are listed on their website.