Stop #2 on mine and jST’s blast down the urbex hotspots of the M1 corridor was Mansfield General Hospital.
(This bit had a date stone of 1940 so there might be a typo in the history below.)
This place has been shut since 1992 and while the rest of the country was enjoying the boom years by knocking old stuff down and throwing up crappy new build housing, Mansfield took the urbexers favourite route to regeneration by just letting the place fall apart, seemingly due to “a reclusive Nottinghamshire businessman” Mr Mumtaz Hussain Adam having bought the site then doing precisely nothing with it.
Armed with a bit of insider information which read more like the design of the obstacle course for a Year 6 Sports Day, we jumped in our sacks, balanced a beanbag on our heads and we were off…
|The first purpose built hospital to serve Mansfield and Mansfield Woodhouse area was constructed in 1877 on land which was donated by the Duke of Portland. That building later became a public house, The Fourways Inn, situated at the junction of Butt Lane and Leeming Lane (A60).
From 1882 a cottage hospital, offering a mere two beds, was situated on Union street, also known as The Lawn.
With diseases such as typhoid, smallpox, tuberculosis and diptheria being commonplace, there was a great need for more hospital beds to accomodate the increasing population of Mansfield.
In 1889 the foundation stone for a new hospital was layed by Mrs Hollins of Pleasley Vale. This new hospital was opened in 1890, and known as The Mansfield General Hospital, which stood on West Hill Drive. The cost of this new hospital was £2,000, and it provided five beds. The opening ceremony was conducted on 27th October 1890 by the Duke of Portland.
The need for an extension of these facilities was recognised fairly soon and on the 28th June 1897 the President of the Hospital Board, Mr F. W. Webb, of Newstead Abbey, laid the foundation stone. The new wing was to be named Newstead Ward, and provided a further ten beds.
With the rapid growth of industry in the town, so the population increased. By 1928 it was approaching 48,000. The local hospitals had kept pace with the growth, the Victoria Hospital (prior to 1897 had been known as the Poor Law Institution), was still the largest unit with 164 beds including a maternity unit, while the Mansfield General had grown from it’s modest 5 beds of 1890 to 108.
In 1950 the Mansfield General celebrated a further extension. This was a new ward block which was officially opened by Sir Eric Sykes. This new block provided a further 60 beds.
With the majority of the services being transferred to the new Kings Mill Hospital over a period of years, sadly the Mansfield General closed it’s doors in 1992.
Through the diamond shaped window…
For some reason there were loads of these cowboy hats scattered around the hospital
Morgue (excuse the shakes)
Another early morning, another blast up the A1 to meet up with jSt at High Royds, one of the former asylums for the West Riding of Yorkshire.
|High Royds Hospital is a former psychiatric hospital south of the village of Menston, West Yorkshire, England. The hospital is located in the City of Leeds metropolitan borough as the border with the City of Bradford metropolitan borough passes between the hospital and the village. It was first opened on 8 October, 1888 as the West Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylum, and was closed in stages between 25 February, 2003 and June of the same year.
A truly magnificent example of Vickers Edwards architecture, it is arguably the finest example of the “broad arrow” layout of asylum design.
The administration building, which is Grade II listed, is now considered something of a show piece at the former hospital, which is situated on a 300-acre (1.2 km2) site at the foot of Rombalds Moor.
It features an Italian mosaic floor in the main corridor which is intricately decorated with the Yorkshire Rose and black daisies – the latter of which provided inspiration for the title of a television screenplay, filmed at High Royds, as a tribute to sufferers of Alzheimers disease.
The hospital once contained a library, a surgery, a dispensary, butcher’s, dairies, baker’s, a sweetshop, an upholster’s, a cobbler’s, spacious grounds, a ballroom and even a railway. The patients lived in Nightingale wards (named after Florence Nightingale), rather than the individual accommodation found in more recent mental health units. The hospital was formerly connected to the Wharfedale railway line by its own small railway system, the High Royds Hospital Railway.
In its final years of operation, High Royds had been become outdated and unsuited to modern psychiatric practice. As part of Leeds Mental Health’s £47 million reprovision process it was closed, with the wards being relocated to various community mental health units within the city of Leeds in the three years leading up to its closure. These include the Becklin Centre in St James’ Hospital and the Mount in the city centre.
There are now plans to convert the site into a new village, also called High Royds, retaining some features of the hospital, such as the ballroom and the clock tower.
This didn’t get off to a good start, had a good wander round and it looked like they’d done a good job of sealing up most of the usual suspects.
But we’re nothing if not resourceful
and suddenly without a hop, skip or even a jump we somehow stumbled into the Main Hall
(Behind the breezeblocks are fireplaces…thought I had a shot but can’t find it now)
Beyond the Main Hall are a number of Dining Rooms and kitchens
Including the usual beautiful features hidden behind the suspended ceilings
Then we got a bit of corridor action…
…and went to the shop, but the cupboards were bare…
Then things got interesting…there was the sound of locks being unlocked, doors being opened, voices…game’s up we thought, nowhere to run (and no clock tower
) so we did the only thing we could do in the circumstances…make like a tree!
Danger passed…then danger passed again. Sound of doors locking again. Two minutes to let the heartbeat settle then up the clock tower.
Down Attercliffe way, Firth Brown were one of the behemoth’s of Sheffield’s steel industry.
At some point they had a Medical Centre, presumably for treating all too common injuries in the steel works.
It then seems as though they didn’t need the Medical Centre anymore (the Thatcher-driven decline of the steel industry in the 70s/80s?) so they demolished it, right?
Wrong, they just buried it and built a car park on top!
Access is interesting to say the least involving stealth, dangling, faith and landslides.
Exit just requires dangling and a lack of fear of heights.
Pics from a couple of visits – firstly with Ojay, Kitty and Woodburner (where most of my pics smelt of dog poo) then with a couple of non-members.
Big up to aem for digging this one out (literally?).
Suspensory bandage, one can only imagine what this may have been used for…
More empty lime cordial bottles than you could shake a stick at, presumably there was/is some medical benefit to drinking lime???