History of the Homes

Almshouses are a great example of benevolence and humanity that the philanthropic had for their countrymen in bygone years.

A jewel is the 17 acre Sydney Howard Lovell Memorial Almshouses at Oakley Bedfordshire. The 21 bungalows and 14 flats were built in 1926 for retired agricultural workers as bequeathed by William George Lovell in memory of his son Sydney Howard Lovell who died tragically young aged 13.

Instructions were for the homes to be substantially built of red brick, front gardens containing rose trees and back gardens containing fruit trees. Today there is still an abundance of fruit trees, flora and greenery providing a tranquil setting.  A summerhouse provides a facility for social activities, which helps to promote the great community and friendly environment to this charming site.

Naturally over the past 90 years the accommodation has been regularly refurbished and updated to provide one and two bedroom homes suitable for today.  Residents live independently although there is a resident warden who acts as a ‘good neighbour’ to those who value the comfort of this type of facility. 

The Trustees of the Almshouses, by the authority of the original Trust Deed, are still historically required to afford priority to those applicants who are, or were, in agricultural employment in the Borough of Bedford and in financial need.  Today, however, successful applicants are likely to be people from a wider source who have an identifiable need for such accommodation and are over 60 years of age. The Trustees consider each case, in detail, on its merits and at their absolute discretion.  If you think your circumstances may fulfil the requirements and you would like to apply, please contact us.