The South-West Yorkshire Joint Board for the Mentally Defective was established under the provisions of the Mental Deficiency Acts of 1913 and 1927. Its members were the county boroughs of Dewsbury, Doncaster, Halifax, Huddersfield and Rotherham.
At its first meeting in October 1928 it decided to purchase St Catherine's Hall and its estate of some 115 acres on the south-west outskirts of Doncaster and in the parish of Loversall for use as a 'colony for mental defectives'. This was known as the St Catherine's Institution. The institution was vested in the National Health Service in 1948.
The minutes held at Doncaster Archives are copies. The original minutes are held at Rotherham Archives, which also holds other records including orders of the Ministry of Health, annual reports, ledgers and a register of patients from the 1930s.