The Association of Dunstable Charities
The Association of Dunstable Charities

Blandina Marshe

Charity Reg. No. 1089412


Ladies’ Lodge is also almshouse accommodation, and was set up from the endowments of Blandina Marshe and Mary Lockington in 1770 for ‘poor maiden gentlewomen who should be upwards of 40 years and be descended of reputable parents’.


There are six house or ‘lodges’, each of which is designed for single long-term habitation.  Space is provided for Almsperson’s visitors to stay overnight.


Each lodge has its own back yard for hanging washing and for rubbish bins. There is a large communal rear garden for the use of residents.  A gardener tends the front and rear gardens.




As at March 2020     


Ex Officio  

Rev'd Rachel Phillips


Representative Trustees  ( 4 year term of office)


Dunstable Town Council:

Mrs Liz Jones                                            Mr John Gurney


Co-optative Trustees  (5 year term of office)


Mrs Carol Owens (Chairman)      Mr John Bradley   Mr Trevor Owens       




Clerk: Mrs Julie Tipler 01582 660008 


Normal Office Hours:


 Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 9.00 a.m. – 2.00 p.m.



Blandina Marshe and Mary Lockington

Family tree

Blandina Marshe 1663 – 1741. Mary Lockington 1665 – 1730 married Thomas Lockington


Blandina Marshe portrait

This is a portrait of Blandina Marshe. She and her sister, Mary, inherited their father’s estate, sharing it equally.


Marshe coat of arms

This is the Marshe coat of arms, awarded to William, Blandina and Mary’s grandfather.


Blandina Marshe coat of arms

Blandina was given the same Christian name as her mother, who was born Blandina Ironmonger.


Herne Farm

This is Herne Farm, near Toddington.       


Lockington Farm

This is Lockington Farm, in Totternhoe. In the past it was known at Charity Farm.


Ladies Lodge

The Ladies Lodge was built in 1743 in ‘East Street’ and ‘as close to the Priory Church as possible.’ The inhabitants were envisaged as being refined ladies, now living in reduced circumstances. Ladies Lodge is never referred to as almshouses.


Ladies Lodge 2009

The inscription on the front of ladies Lodge surrounds the Marshe coat of arms and says

This Lodge was built and Endowed

In 1743


To the Will of Blandina Marshe.


Marshe Dickinson bust

Marshe Dickinson was a distant cousin of William Chew, Frances Ashton and Jane Cart. He was executor of Blandina Marshe’s estate, chairman of her trustees and instrumental in the erection of ladies Lodge.


Marshe Dickinson arms

This is the coat of arms on Marshe Dickinson’s memorial in the south aisle of the priory Church.


Ladies Lodge graves

These graves are in the north-east corner of the Priory’s churchyard and contain past residents of the Ladies Lodge.


Marshe memorial

This memorial, in the south aisle of the Priory Church, commemorates many members of the extended Marshe family, including Blandina Marshe and her sister Mary Lockington.




We are located at:

The Association of Dunstable Charities

Grove House

76 High Street North




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If you have any queries or wish to make an application for a grant, please contact us:

+44 1582 660008

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