|Activity||The Oldmill Reformatory School was founded in Aberdeen in 1857, designed to take fifty boys, though it was expanded to take 120 in 1862. The institution dealt with boys aged between seven and sixteen who had committed or were thought to be in danger of committing crimes, in an effort to avoid sending them to adult prison. It gave the children an education in order to make them employable, as well as teaching them farming and gardening. A matron and a medical attendant were appointed, and the school was certified and inspected by the Secretary of State for Scotland. Notable locals such as Alexander Thomson of Banchory and William Cosmo Gordon of Fyvie were life directors, and Aberdeen Burgh Council was closely involved in the School, particularly under Dr. Watt's mortification which made over lands for the school's use. |
The Industrial Asylum and Reformatory for Girls in Aberdeen was founded in 1862, and run by trustees under the mortification of William Harvey in Beedlieston of Dyce. Four of these were baillies of Aberdeen and the rest were clergymen. A medical attendant and a matron were appointed. Taking in girls who were already criminals or who were through their circumstances thought likely to turn to crime, the reformatory's aims were the same as the boys' institution: education with a view to honest employment. The girls were also taught sewing and housework, and the reformatory undertook to try to find the girls appropriate places when they left the school. There were no age limits to inmates, though they were expected to stay for five years unless their behaviour was particularly good.