Originally called Poole Mansion it was constructed in 1746 by Sir Peter Thompson, who was one of the few merchants to return to Poole after setting himself up as a successful merchant in London and trading in Hamburg and Newfoundland
Peter Thompson was the son of one of Poole’s captains, who’d been involved in trade with the American colonists in Carolina. Before returning to Poole, Sir Peter had become an MP for St Albans as well as High Sheriff of Surrey.
Poole Mansion was also previously a hospital. In 1890 Lady Cornelia of Canford convinced her husband to buy Sir Peter Thompson House, where she set up a hospital of 30 beds to replace a small surgery she had in West Street. Cornelia Hospital, as it was called, served the local community for some time before the hospital was transferred to a more purpose-built building in Longfleet Road.
Lady Cornelia of Canford
Lady Cornelia of Canford was born on 17th September 1847, she was a leading evangelist in the country, a philanthropist and champion of education, as well as being a founder of the Church education corporation.
Locally, she’s remembered for a large number of philanthropic projects that had a lasting effect on the town of Poole and as a representative of great wealth and privilege from an era now vanished.
We are proud to have a portrait of Lady Cornelia in our reception area as a reminder of all the good work that she did for the local area.
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