Fonds CAP - Catherine Cappe Memorial Trust

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Catherine Cappe Memorial Trust


  • 1956-1973 (Creation)

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3 bundles

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Administrative history

The pressing need for a girls hostel in York became obvious to the Committee of St Stephen's Children's Home in 1953. It had become almost impossible to find suitable accommodation in York for the girls from St Stephen's who had reached school leaving age. Home Office regulations would not allow girls who had started work to remain in children's homes indefinitely. A survey showed the shortage of accommodation across the city to be very acute, and as such York Corporation was approached and asked whether they might be able to provide suitable accommodation under the Children's and Young Persons' Act, 1948, provided to residents at a cost which they could afford. The answer received was that the need in York was thought to be too small to warrant the expenditure by the Corporation. At the same time, it was suggested that if a voluntary committee could be formed to start the process of creating accommodation for young women, the Corporation would support it. Accordingly, a provisional committee was formed on 8 February 1954, and the Joseph Rowntree Village Trust was approached for financial aid. The Trustees provided £300 per year for three years to cover staff salaries, and a further £150 for one year to cover rent.

Soon afterwards, the Trustees were offered the opportunity to acquire Rawcliffe Holt, and the committee accepted the tenancy for three years in the first instance. Official sanction for a girls' hostel had already been acquired by the Home Office.

The provisional committee of the hostel was advised to form a Trust for administrative purposes. As a result, the Catherine Cappe Memorial Trust was set up in York following a public meeting at York Mansion House on 16 July 1954. The Trust was named in honour of Catherine Cappe, a writer in York in the 18th and 19th centuries who concerned herself with improving lives of young women and girls.

At the meeting in 1954 the Catherine Cappe Memorial Trust was formed, and a provisional committee appointed. The accommodation was made available from 1 January 1955, and the hostel welcomed its first residents on 29 January 1955.

It is unknown when the Trust officially ceased trading, however the Trust was still producing annual reports in 1973.
St Stephen's Orphanage

Content and structure area

Scope and content

At present this collection includes a complete set of annual reports and balance sheets between 1956 and 1973, the proposal for the opening of the hostel for girls, and annual general meeting reminder cards.



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Material is available subject to the usual terms and conditions of access to Archives and Local History collections.

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Images are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

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  • English

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