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Long Island Combination Poorhouse

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Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

Long Island Combination Poorhouse

Parallel form(s) of name

  • Long Island Institution

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Dates of existence



The Poor Law Act of 1845 enabled the construction by parishes or combination of parishes of poorhouses. Pressure put on the Parochial Boards of Barra, South Uist, North Uist and Harris by the Board of Supervision to build a poorhouse was resisted. In 1875, they relented and plans were drawn up by the parishes in combination for the the erection of the Long Island Combination Poorhouse in Lochmaddy, North Uist, designed by Edinburgh architects Kinnear & Peddie. It opened in 1883.

In 1907, the poorhouse was converted for use as an asylum for 28 'harmless lunatics'. Additions to the buildings were made in 1927 to designs by D Cattanach. An infirmary stood to the south-west of the main building with a mortuary to its west.

After 1930, it was known as Long Island Institution and served the whole of the Outer Hebrides except Lewis. In 1946, it had 60 beds including 18 for the chronic sick and the remainder for certified mental cases. A report at that time noted that two bare rooms served as day rooms and dining rooms, and that staff quarters were on the first floor.

The building later became Lochmaddy Hospital which finally closed in around 2001. In 2004, the buildings stood empty.


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