The Workhouse in 20 objects winner: Workhouse mug

Corroded old metal mug from Workhouse kitchen

Although the diets of Workhouse inmates were originally designed in keeping with the concept that life inside The Workhouse should not be better than life outside, the food received was often much better than those in poverty would have eaten on a daily basis.

This Workhouse mug may well have held a pauper's tea allowance. While it was not pernitted for everyone, according to the 1835 Poor Law Commission, inmates over 60 years of age received 1oz. of tea per week.

" For the paupers meal times were not a social occasion. This mug represents the functional and utilitarian aspect of workhouse meals."
- Ian Cooper, Workhouse commercial manager