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Life in the workhouse: everything you wanted to know

From daily routines to whether inmates really ate gruel, Peter Higginbotham responds to listener questions about the workhouse

Life in the workhouse podcast with Peter Higginbotham

What was the daily routine in a British workhouse? Who would end up there? How accurate was Charles Dickens’ depiction of workhouse life? And did the inmates really eat gruel? In the latest in our series exploring history’s biggest topics, Peter Higginbotham responds to listener questions and popular internet search queries about the workhouse.

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Peter Higginbotham is the author of Life in a Victorian Workhouse (Pitkin, 2014).

He is also the author of The Workhouse Cookbook (The History Press, 2008).


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