Pwllheli Union Records

Scope and Content

Records of the Pwllheli Union, 1837-1948, including minute books, 1837-1930; committee minute books, 1878-1933; letter books, 1849-1878; general administration records, 1837-1940; ledgers, 1892-1930; Collector's records, 1899-1939; accounts, 1898-1945; workhouse registers and general records, 1853-1948; Porter's books, 1915-1931; Master's day books, 1919-1930; records relating to lunacy, 1859-1908; outdoor relief records, 1885-1919; vaccination records, 1867-1944; Medical Officer's records, 1911-1943; Rural Sanitary Authority minute book, 1872-1893.

Administrative / Biographical History

Until the Poor Law Amendment Act 1834, relief of the poor was the responsibility of the parish. Following the Act, parishes were grouped into Unions which were charged to provide a workhouse for the relief of the able-bodied poor. The Pwllheli Union was formed in 1837 and operated in 32 constituent parishes in Caernarfonshire; Aberdaron, Abererch, Bodferin, Buan, Botwnog, Bryncroes, Carngiwch, Ceidio, Criccieth, Deneio, Edern, Llanaelhaearn, Llanarmon, Llanbedrog, Llandegwning, Llandudwen, Llanengan, Llanfaelrhys, Llanfihangel Bachellaeth, Llangian, Llangwnnadl, Llangybi, Llaniestyn, Llannor, Llanystumdwy, Mellteyrn, Nefyn, Penllech, Penrhos, Pistyll, Rhiw and Tudweiliog. The Board of Guardians responsible for the Union had other duties from time to time, including the registration of births, marriages and deaths, vaccinations, assessments of rates, sanitation, school attendance and infant life protection. By the time of the Local Government Act 1929, Unions were abolished and their duties transferred to County Councils, responsibility for the poor being transferred to the Public Assistance Committee until 1948.


Arranged into the following: Administration; Finance; Workhouse; Outdoor relief; Vaccination; General medical care; Registration; Rural Sanitary Authority.

Access Information

Medical records are not accessible until 100 years after closure.

Acquisition Information

Source not recorded


Compiled by Richard Burman for the ANW project. The following sources were used in the compilation of this description: Caernarfon Record Office, Records of Pwllheli Poor Law Union and Board of Guardians, catalogue; The History of Poor Law website (, viewed 20 September 2004.

Other Finding Aids

Hard copies of the catalogue are available in Caernarfon Record Office and the National Library of Wales. The catalogue is available online.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual copyright regulations apply.

Appraisal Information

All records deposited at Caernarfon Record Office have been retained.


Accruals are not expected

Related Material

Further records are Caernarfon Record Office, XB12/1/1.

Geographical Names