Refitting a Hospital during the Great War

The Royal Ear Hospital. The new hospital on Huntley Street, for which Duveen donated the princely sum of £50,000, is due for demolition.

Jaipreet Virdi

During the Great War, several institutions in London were refitted as auxiliary hospitals to treat the wounded servicemen returning from the battlefields. With large numbers of hospital staff heading to the front lines or volunteering for the war effort, some smaller hospitals even refitted their premises to contribute to the war effort.

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One such volunteer hospital was the Royal Ear Hospital, formerly the Royal Dispensary for Diseases of the Ear. Located on 42-43 Dean Street, Soho, the hospital provided specialized treatments for aural diseases since its founding in 1816. As practically the entire staff of the institution was depleted by military duties or volunteer service during the Great War, the hospital closed down. In August 1914, the Governing Committee unanimously resolved that the building should be offered to the Red Cross Society and beds temporarily placed at the disposal of the War Office, for the benefit of soldiers suffering from deafness or…

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About Harriet Richardson

I am an architectural historian, working on the Survey of London at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. I have worked on surveys of hospital architecture in Scotland and England.
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