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Letchworth Settlement, 1920-2020

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Letchworth Settlement, 1920-2020 Synopsis

Letchworth Settlement, an independent adult education centre, is one of the treasures of the world’s first garden city. Starting life in 1920 as Letchworth Adult Education Settlement, it soon became part of the wider Educational Settlement Association, following the example of Toynbee Hall in London, and is now one of few such institutions still in existence in 2020. In its early days, the Settlement embodied the ideals of the young garden city with its ethos of self-help. There was a strong belief that everyone was entitled to an education and to fulfil their potential; the unemployed in the town were regularly helped with free classes and meals. In 1925 the Settlement moved to the former premises of the Skittles Inn in Nevells Road, which it still calls home. Despite a lack of funds, the number of classes grew steadily and associated societies were formed, including the Settlement Players and the camera club (both still in existence) as well as a choir and orchestra and rambling and camping clubs. The building was listed grade II in 1979; in 1995 the then Letchworth Corporation bought the building and leased it back to the Settlement, ensuring a more secure future for an institution seen as an integral part of life in Letchworth. In this lively history, former Hertfordshire County Archivist Kate Thompson looks at the wider context in which the organisation flourished, as well as notable members of staff and key events in its century of sharing knowledge.

About This Edition

ISBN: 9781912260294
Publication date: 5th October 2020
Author: Kate Thompson
Publisher: Hertfordshire Publications an imprint of University of Hertfordshire Press
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 96 pages
Genres: Social and cultural history
European history