The mayor and burgesses were to purchase: a faire plot of ground within the said towne...
and thereupon shall erect and build a strong house of Bricke fit and commodious for setting of the poore on worke therein; or else shall buy and purchase such an house, being already built, if they can finde one alreadie fitting, or that may with a reasonable summe be made fir for the said use; the same house to have a faire garden adjoyning, and to be from time to time kept in good and sufficient reparations by the said mayor and burgesses for the time being for ever.
By 1628, the site had been redeveloped to provide a workhouse for poor clothiers.
The impressive building (for which William Brockman, brickmaker of Tilehurst, supplied 200,000 bricks and 20,000 tiles) became known as "The Oracle" — the name possibly deriving from "orchal", a violet dye obtained from lichen.
Former scattered homes, 11-13 Milman Road, Reading, 2014. Former scattered homes, 82-84 Crescent Road, Reading.