Visit To The Spike Guildford – the last intact workhouse in England

18th March 2022, 10:30 - 13:00

The Spike, Guildford
Friday 18 March 2022
 10.15am for a prompt 10.30am start
Approx finish at 1.00pm



Join the President and Chairman of our Society for a specially arranged tour and talk on this fascinating if rather grim subject of the poor of the 18th and 19th century and how they survived in these workhouses.

Led by Cllr John Redpath, one of the Founders of The Spike charity, the Charlotteville Jubilee Trust, that now runs the work house as a visitor museum. John is also a Guildford Borough Councillor. This event will allow you to view this historic workhouse and hear about some of the history associated with this site.

During the Poor Law Union years (1834 – 1929), those fit enough could keep themselves out of the workhouse proper as they could earn a little here and there, often through back breaking hard work or through trickery or begging.  The Guildford Spike tells a grim story about how the poor were treated in this country.

The Spike was built at the time of the New Poor Laws to house the forgotten classes of Edwardian England – the poor, the infirm, the ill and the destitute.  We will see a working cell and experience some of the sights, sounds and smells inside the workhouse.

John Redpath is also a member of the George Orwell Society and will also highlight the story of this author’s association with the workhouse.

This event is not designed for children, although older children may find the trip interesting and is not suitable for dogs.

Those with mobility challenges are welcome but please but do let us know in advance.

The cost for the day will be £7 for members and £9 for non-members which includes tea/coffee and biscuits.

Deadline for booking 13 March 2022.

If the weather is nice you are welcome to bring a picnic to enjoy in the garden. Some of the group will be heading to Guildford afterwards to enjoy a spot of lunch in the town.

Any enquiries please contact us at

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This event is fully booked. If you wish to have your name on our waiting list, please let us know via email or contact form.


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