The Skibbereen Poor Law Union was officially declared in 1839. The Workhouse was opened in 1842 at a cost of £8,300. It was built to house a maximum capacity of 800 inmates. The Skibbereen Workhouse was built to accomodate people from the areas of Abbeystowry, Aghadown, Ardfield, Caharragh, Castlehaven, Castrumventry, Creagh, Drinagh, Drumdaleague, Kilcoe, Kilfaughmabeg, Kilkerranmore, Kilmacabea, Kilmoe, Mycross, Rathbarry, Roscarbery, Schull, Tullagh, and Clear.
In 1921 the Skibbereen Workhouse was burned down by Republican forces.
The Skibbereen Workhouse site is now occupied by the local community hospital with only a small portion of the original buildings surviving.
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