Newland Hurst Since 1978

Newland Hurst was founded in 1978 by a group of parents of young people with learning disabilities.


At the time, their offspring were at Sunfield School in Clent, a special school run according to the philosophy of the Austrian educationalist and philosopher Rudolf Steiner, but the time was fast approaching when they would need to move on to the next stage in their lives, and this presented a dilemma for their parents, who were strongly in favour of keeping the group together. Having decided that the best solution would be to establish a new home in which their children could continue to live and develop, they set about looking for suitable premises. After an extensive search they discovered Newland Hurst, a Victorian house near Droitwich with six acres of land and diverse outbuildings, including a dilapidated early 19th century stable block.

The house needed a lot of improvement in order to reach an acceptable standard, and it was soon realised that a great deal more money would need to be raised. Newland Hurst required the services of a talented fundraiser, and one appeared in the form of Mrs Betty Wilson, whose abilities in this direction amounted almost to genius. However, Mrs Wilson also applied hard work and determination to her task, as the many hundreds of letters to and from potential donors testify, and she rapidly achieved remarkable results. Thanks to her efforts, within a few years Newland Hurst was transformed from a house that met only basic requirements into the modern and welcoming place we see today. The Victorian house still remains and forms a splendid frontage to the property, but behind and alongside it is a remarkable complex of modern buildings comprising residents’ personal living accommodation, a self-contained flat, kitchen and dining rooms, activity rooms, office and administration areas and a spacious hall which serves many purposes, social, dramatic, musical and sporting.