Ancestry UK

Town Bridewell, Kettering, Northamptonshire

At the January Sessions, 1747, it was ordered that a Bridewell, or House of Correction should be built in Hog Leys, Kettering. Joseph Warden, a victualler, was appointed keeper, with a salary of £12 a year and £13 for rent.

In 1784, John Howard wrote:

This prison is in the back court of the keeper's public house. 1 On the front is an inscription, that "This house with sixteen dwellings were burnt Nov. 5, 1766." A room for men 18½ feet by 15½, in which down 3 steps is a lodging-room 8 feet by 5½, with an aperture in the door 15 inches by 11. Court 19½ feet square. For women, a separate court and a room about the same size as the men's day-room: dirt floors: windows close glazed. No water: no sewer. Clauses against spirituous liquors not hung up. Keeper's salary, £12.

Fees, 2s. 6d. Receives rent of the county £15½:½10½:½0.—From new year's-day 1780, to 1781, here were a hundred and five prisoners.

1779, Oct. 12, Prisoners 2. 1782, July 14, Prisoners 0.

The bridewell had ceased operation by the early nineteenth century.


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  • No individual records identified for this establishment — any information welcome.
  • The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 4DU. Has a wide variety of crime and prison records going back to the 1770s, including calendars of prisoners, prison registers and criminal registers.
  • Find My Past has digitized many of the National Archives' prison records, including prisoner-of-war records, plus a variety of local records including Manchester, York and Plymouth. More information.
  • Prison-related records on Ancestry UK include Prison Commission Records, 1770-1951, and local records from London, Swansea, Gloucesterhire and West Yorkshire. More information.
  • The Genealogist also has a number of National Archives' prison records. More information.


  • Prison Oracle - resources those involved in present-day UK prisons.
  • GOV.UK - UK Government's information on sentencing, probation and support for families.