Market Lavington Museum

Inside Fiddington House

Fiddington House was a home for people with nervous disorders from the 1830s until the 1960s. It was privately owned although it took what might be called council residents. But the real money came from providing accommodation for the (perhaps) eccentric older members of rich families.

Such an organisation needed to advertise and we have seen, on this blog an advert for the asylum from the 1880s, when Dr Charles Hitchcock was the owner (click here).

In 1927, the asylum was operated by members of the Benson family. They obviously felt a glossy brochure was needed. Of course, back in 1927, this was in monochrome.

Title page for the 1927 Fiddington House brochure. The entire brochure can be seen at Market La\vington Museum.

The brochure paints a picture of something like a country hotel, with all sorts of facilities for residents. There was, for example, a gentlemen’s club room.

Gentlemen’s Club Room at Fiddington House Asylum

So, our male residents can clearly have a game of billiards or just relax in the convivial surroundings.

For the ladies there was a drawing room.

Ladies’ Drawing Room at the Fiddington Asylum in Market Lavington

So perhaps a lady could sit at the piano whilst others carried out suitable, ladylike activities, such as embroidery.

Reports, even back into early Victorian times do suggest that this was an extremely well run establishment.

Of course, the asylum is now a distant memory. It was entirely rased to the ground in the 1960s and a new housing estate was built on its site.