Dorchester County Gaol and House of Correction

Overview

Details

Records

Overview

Alternative Names   Dorchester County Gaol, Dorchester Gaol, Dorchester Prison, HMP Dorchester

Prison Type   Local Prison -  Common Gaol & House of Correction/Bridewell

Jurisdiction   County

Date opened   1793

Date closed   post 1900 (2013)

Location   on a piece of ground still called the Castle, North Square   Dorchester

Map location   exact or closely approximate

County   Dorset

Prison Info

Alternative Names   Dorchester County Gaol, Dorchester Gaol, Dorchester Prison, HMP Dorchester

Prison Type   Local Prison

Jurisdiction   County

Date opened   1793

Date closed   post 1900 (2013)

Location   on a piece of ground still called the Castle, North Square   Dorchester

Map location   exact or closely approximate
Lat.   50.7169  Long.   -2.4374

County   Dorset

Prisoner Statistics

 

Year 1818

Annual Committed   -   405

Daily Greatest number   -   176

 

Year 1823

Annual Committed   -   497

Daily Census   -   139

 

Year 1828

Annual Committed   -   477

Daily Census   -   105

 

Year 1833

Annual Committed   -   491

Daily Census   -   146

 

Year 1838

Annual Confined   -   740

Daily Census   -   132

 

Year 1843

Annual Confined   -   911

Daily Census   -   97

 

Year 1848

Annual Confined   -   983

Daily Daily average   -   148

 

Year 1853

Annual Confined   -   921

Daily Daily average   -   140

 

Year 1858

Annual Committed   -   642

Daily Daily average   -   104

 

Year 1863

Annual Committed   -   888

Daily Greatest number   -   146

 

Year 1868

Annual Committed   -   794

Daily Daily average   -   103

 

Year 1873

Annual Committed   -   710

Daily Daily average   -   103

 

Year 1878

Annual Committed   -   701

Daily Daily average   -   97

 

Year 1883

Annual Committed   -   541

Daily Daily average   -   76

 

Year 1888

Annual Committed   -   624

Daily Daily average   -   81

 

Year 1893

Annual Committed   -   603

Daily   -  

 

Year 1898

Annual Committed   -   564

Daily   -  

Principal Primary Sources

  • James Neild, The State of the Prisons of England, Scotland and Wales (London, 1812), p.163
  • Account of Gaols, Houses of Correction or Penitentiaries in the United Kingdom, 1818 (Parl. Papers, 1819, XVII.371), p.12
  • Fifth Report of the Committee of the Society for the Improvement of Prison Discipline and for the Reformation of Juvenile Offenders (London, 1823), Appendix, p.19; Sixth Report of the Committee of the Society for the Improvement of Prison Discipline and for the Reformation of Juvenile Offenders (London, 1824), Appendix, p.27; Seventh Report of the Committee of the Society for the Improvement of Prison Discipline and for the Reformation of Juvenile Offenders (London, 1827), Appendix, p.30; Eighth Report of the Committee of the Society for the Improvement of Prison Discipline and for the Reformation of Juvenile Offenders (London, 1832), Appendix, p.10
  • Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1824, XIX.359), p.72; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1825, XXIII.1), p.78; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1826, XXIV.1), p.76; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1826-27, XIX.365), p.67; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1828, XX.327), p.75; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1829, XIX.1), p.63; Reports and Schedules Pursuant To Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1830, XXIV.1), p.58; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1830-31, XII.1), p.58; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1831-32. XXXIII.197), p.60; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1833, XXVIII.1), p.64; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1834, XLVI.1), p.60; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1835, XLIV.225), p.64; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1836, XLII.1), p.38; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1837, XLV.1), p.42; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1837-8, XLIII.227), p.41; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1839, XXXVIII.17), p.38; Reports Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1840, XXXVIII.1), p.39; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1841, XVIII.1), p.41; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1842, XXXII.1), p.43; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1843, XLIII.1), p.46; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1844, XXXIX.403), p.43; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1845, XXXVII.417), p.43; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1846, XXXIV.187), p.44; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1847, XLVII.297), p.50; Reports and Schedules Pursuant to Gaol Acts (Parl. Papers, 1847-48, LII.465), p.53
  • Abstract Return of Establishment and Expenditure of Gaols and Houses of Correction in England and Wales (Parl. Papers, 1840, XXXVIII.241), p.12
  • Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District. First Report (Parl. Papers, 1836, XXXV.269), p.3; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Fourth Report (Parl. Papers, 1839, XXII.217), p.2; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Sixth Report (Parl. Papers, 1841 Session 2, V.177), p.103; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Ninth Report (Parl. Papers, 1844, XXIX.391), p.128; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Tenth Report (Parl. Papers, 1845, XXIV.207), p.95; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Eleventh Report (Parl. Papers, 1846, XXI.565), p.107; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Twelfth Report (Parl. Papers, 1847-8, XXXV.1), p.115; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain III. Southern and Western District, Thirteenth Report (Parl. Papers, 1847-8, XXXVI.133), p.83; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Home District, Fifteenth Report (Parl. Papers, 1851, XXVII.1), p.13; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Twenty-third Report (Parl. Papers, 1857-58, XXIX.69), p.25; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Twenty-fifth Report (Parl. Papers, 1860, XXXV.153), p.19; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Twenty-seventh Report (Parl. Papers, 1862, XXV.5), p.31; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Twenty-ninth Report (Parl. Papers, 1864, XXVI.1), p.29; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirtieth Report (Parl. Papers, 1865, XXIII.1), p.74; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-first Report (Parl. Papers, 1866, XXXVII.1), p.64; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-second Report (Parl. Papers, 1867-68, XXXIV.203), p.81; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-third Report (Parl. Papers, 1868-69, XXIX.1), p.55; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-fourth Report (Parl. Papers, 1870, XXXVII.1), p.57; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-fifth Report (Parl. Papers, 1871, XXIX.241), p.68; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-sixth Report (Parl. Papers, 1872, XXXI.1), p.42; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-seventh Report (Parl. Papers, 1873, XXXII.1), p.79; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-eighth Report (Parl. Papers, 1874, XXIX.1), p.91; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Thirty-ninth Report (Parl. Papers, 1875, XXXVII.1), p.98; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Fortieth Report (Parl. Papers, 1876, XXXV.1), p.98; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Forty-first Report (Parl. Papers, 1877, XLIII.1), p.100; Inspectors of Prisons of Great Britain I. Southern District, Forty-second Report (Parl. Papers, 1878, XLI.1), p.100
  • Commissioners of Prisons, Second Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1878-79, XXXIV.1, 97), p.22; Commissioners of Prisons, Third Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1880, XXXV.1,73), p.28; Commissioners of Prisons, Fourth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1881, LI.441, 521), p.31; Commissioners of Prisons, Fifth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1882, XXXIII.443, 541), p.34; Commissioners of Prisons, Sixth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1883, XXXI.445, 579), p.37; Commissioners of Prisons, Seventh Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1884, XLII.461, 551), p.35; Commissioners of Prisons, Eighth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1884-85, XXXVII.527, 651), p.34; Commissioners of Prisons, Ninth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1886, XXXV.1, 93), p.30; Commissioners of Prisons, Tenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1887, XLI.203, 335), p.27; Commissioners of Prisons, Eleventh Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1888, LVIII.1, 209), p.27; Commissioners of Prisons, Twelfth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1889, XLI.1, 181), p.27; Commissioners of Prisons, Thirteenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1890, XXXVII.1, 183), p.27; Commissioners of Prisons, Fourteenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1890-91, XLIII.1, 125), p.26; Commissioners of Prisons, Fifteenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1892, XLII.1, 147), p.25; Commissioners of Prisons, Sixteenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1893-94, XLVII.1, 121), p.26; Commissioners of Prisons, Seventeenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1894, XLIV.1, 183), p.26; Commissioners of Prisons, Eighteenth Annual Report (Parl. Papers, 1895, LVI.727, 865), p.26
  • Report of Coms. of Prisons and Directors of Convict Prisons, 1895-96 (Parl. Papers, 1896, XLIV.235), p.69; Report of Coms. of Prisons and Directors of Convict Prisons, 1896-97 (Parl. Papers, 1897, XL.105), p.209; Report of Coms. of Prisons and Directors of Convict Prisons, 1897-98 (Parl. Papers, 1898, XLVII.23), p.229; Report of Coms. of Prisons and Directors of Convict Prisons, 1898-99 (Parl. Papers, 1899, XLIII.65), p.223; Report of Coms. of Prisons and Directors of Convict Prisons, 1899-1900 (Parl. Papers, 1900, XLI.1), p.257

Management

Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D.1721/4/1

Collection: Sotherby and Company, London

Description: Accounts of the manufacture of hats and other work carried out by prisoners (1801-1802); summary accounts for the Gaol, accounts of Dorset Gaol Charity Fund, statistics concerning number of prisoners, sentences, and disposal.

Dates: 1802


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-591/T/5

Collection: None

Description: Grant of the Prison at Dorchester, John White, High Sheriff, to Robert Williams Andrews of Dorchester.

Dates: 1821


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: Q/S/M/1-2

Collection: Dorset Quarter Sessions

Description: Dorset Quarter Sessions minutes, order and plea books. Likely to contain material relevant to the administration of Dorchester Prison

Dates: 1625-1905


Archive name: Staffordshire Record Office

Catalogue ref: Q/SB 1801 T/224

Collection: Staffordshire Quarter Sessions

Description: Includes account of prisoners employed in making hats at Dorset County Gaol, giving names etc

Dates: 1800


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D148.41

Collection: None

Description: Dorset Quarter Sessions, the firm of Ffooks, Solicitors, papers as Clerks of the Peace, including Gaols, highways, police and lunatic asylums

Dates: 1850-1899


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-FFO/41/6

Collection: Ffooks and Darlington of Sherborne Solicitors

Description: Papers re purchases made for use of Gaol (1854), Visiting Justices' report (1855), papers re sale of messuage in St Peter's parish, Dorchester (1855-1856)

Dates: 1854-1856


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/A/1/1

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Discipline Office and Visiting Committee Minute book

Dates: 1878-1939


Finance

Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-ASH/B/X2

Collection: Andrews, Son and Huxtable Solicitors

Description: Accounts of Robert Lambert, Treasurer of Gaol fund

Dates: 1789-1807


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-FFO/41/22

Collection: Ffooks and Darlington of Sherborne Solicitors

Description: Papers re appeal against rates on police station, Gaol and County Hall

Dates: 1867


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: PE/SH/CO 1/1

Collection: Sherborne parish

Description: Itemised accounts of the County Treasurer, with special attention to the accounts of the County Gaol and House of Correction

Dates: 1823


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: PE/SH/CO 1/2

Collection: Sherborne parish

Description: Accounts of the County Gaol and House of Correction

Dates: 1824


Staff

Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/C/1/1

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Register of Officers' salaries

Dates: 1863-1878


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/C/1/2

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Register of Officers, including details of appointment, salary, service and allowances. With contemporary index.

Dates: 1881-1911


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/C/1/3

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Register of Officers, including details of appointment, salary, service and allowances. With contemporary index.

Dates: 1888-1928


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-429/1

Collection: Reverend Dacre Clemeston

Description: Testimonial as to character of Dacre Clemeston, Clerk, MA, Chaplain to Dorset County Gaol

Dates: 1833


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-RGB/LL/493

Collection: None

Description: Appointment of Robert W. Andrews as Gaoler and Keeper of Prisoners in Gaol and Castle of Dorchester

Dates: 1842


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/BLX/X49

Collection: Bloxworth Estate

Description: Papers of Thomas Packard (or Pickard), Chairman of Quarter Sessions. Printed copy of complaints (and other papers) exhibited against George Andrews, Gaoler of Dorchester County Gaol, throwing light on prison conditions (1804-1805).

Dates: 1802-1808


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/LRL/1/722

Collection: Lock, Read and Lock, probate records

Description: Will of Henry Pitfield of Dorchester, Warden in HM Prison (probate copy)

Dates: 1886


Prisoners

Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/1/1-4

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Criminal process registers. Description of prisoners held in custody with cross-references to prisoners register.

Dates: 1782-1828


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/2/1-10

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Prison registers

Dates: 1812-1879


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/4/1

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Register of debtors.

Dates: 1793-1842


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/6/3

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Register of executions

Dates: 1816, 1913, 1941


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: Ph.164/2

Collection: None

Description: Dorset Calendar of prisoners. Descriptions in Dorchester Gaol register - Tolpuddle Martyrs.

Dates: 1834


Archive name: The National Archives

Catalogue ref: PCOM2/10

Collection: Prison Commission

Description: Register of prisoners

Dates: 1853-1854


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/LEG/F/23

Collection: Lester and Garland families of Poole

Description: Out-letter book. Mainly about family and business affairs, including order concerning Richard Carlile in Dorchester Gaol, letter in reply to Republican.

Dates: 1816-1826


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/LEG/F28

Collection: Lester and Garland families of Poole

Description: George Garland (1753-1825). Issue of The Republican for 18 February comprising letter from Richard Carlile in Dorchester Gaol.

Dates: 1825


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-395/1

Collection: Henry Harbet

Description: Poetry - fragments of paper found under the floorboards of a cell in Dorchester Prison, written by Henry Joseph Harbet

Dates: 1887


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-395/2

Collection: Henry Harbet

Description: Prison photograph of Harbert and some fellow convicts (photocopy)

Dates: 1887


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: DC/BTB/W3

Collection: Bridport Borough

Description: Return of prisoners committed to Dorchester Gaol by Justices of Bridport

Dates: 1833-1836


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/3/1-4

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Descriptions of prisoners.

Dates: 1858-1878


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/5/1

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Photograph album containing black and white photographs of prisoners

Dates: 1887-1901


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: WYL623

Collection: None

Description: Humphrey Boyle of Leeds, freethinker, prison letters from Richard Carlise and othersĀ 

Dates: 1821-1828


Land & Buildings

Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D.1721

Collection: Sotherby and Company, London

Description: Deeds including for Dorchester Prison (1802)

Dates: 1743-1858


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/COO:E/8

Collection: Coombes archive, Dorset

Description: OS 1/500' maps showing the Grove, Colliton Park, the Prison, site of friary etc

Dates: 1888


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: D-525

Collection: Dorset County Gaol, Dorchester

Description: Architectural plans of the Dorset County Gaol, Dorchester

Dates: 1824


Archive name: Dorset History Centre

Catalogue ref: NG-PR/1/D/6/1

Collection: Dorchester Prison

Description: Plan of the execution drop.

Dates: 1886


Archive name: The National Archives

Catalogue ref: PCOM7/113

Collection: Prison Commission

Description: Land. Dorchester Prison: sewer through prison grounds encroachment: school building bearing on prison wall

Dates: 1896-1909


Archive name: Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre

Catalogue ref: A1/516/5

Collection: None

Description: Plans and description of the county Gaol at Dorchester

Dates: 19th century


Archive name: Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre

Catalogue ref: D/28/18/14

Collection: Diocese of Salisbury

Description: Dorchester St Peter. Burial ground for County Gaol. No conveyance, but a petition, act of court, and sentence of consecration.

Dates: 1824


Other

Archive name: Somerset Archives and Local Studies

Catalogue ref: A/CYW/1/1/9

Collection: None

Description: Correspondence from Henry James Leigh to Anne Leigh. The Judges 'delivered most eloquent judgements upon Miss Glenn's character,' and the defendants received custodial sentences at Dorchester Gaol.

Dates: 1819