Margate’s Sea Bathing Hospital

Royal Sea Bathing Hospital, Margate. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

Earlier this year I spent a wonderful weekend in Margate and was fortunate to be staying just around the corner from the former Sea Bathing Hospital. This was a building that I first visited in September 1991. Since then it has been transformed into a gated private housing development, with some very swanky newly built ‘beach huts’ overlooking the bay.

The new ‘beach huts’ at the former Royal Sea Bathing Hospital, Margate. Built in 2016 for the developers, Harriss Property Limited, to designs by Guy Hollaway Architects. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

Back in the early 1990s the future of the hospital was uncertain. Remaining services were then scheduled to move to a new building on the Thanet District General Hospital site. Ten years later the buildings were in a sorry state. In 2001 a planning application was submitted to convert the historic core into luxury apartments.

Extract from the 25-inch OS map revised in 1936. Reproduced by permission of the National Library of Scotland

What makes the hospital so special is its long history – it claims to be the earliest specialist orthopaedic hospital in Britain if not the world, and was a pioneer in the use of open-air treatment for patients with non-pulmonary tuberculosis. Founded in 1791 by John Coakley Lettsom, the first building went up in 1793-6 to designs by the Reverend John Pridden. Lettsom was a Quaker physician who espoused the benefits of treating disease with sunshine, fresh air and sea bathing.

John Coakley Lettsom (1744-1815),  with his family in the garden of his house in Grove Hill, Camberwell, Surrey. Oil painting by an unknown English artist, c.1786. Wellcome Library

The idea that sea bathing had health benefits was not new. A Dr Wittie promoted sea bathing as a cure as early as 1660 in Scarborough. By the mid-eighteenth century sea bathing for health had become widely popular. The small fishing village of Brighthelmstone  grew into the resort of Brighton on the strength of the perceived healthiness of its especially salty sea as well as through the patronage of the future George IV. Just about any illness was claimed to be curable by the application of sea water – externally or internally, but glandular and respiratory complaints were thought to be particularly likely to benefit from such treatment.

Mermaids at Brighton by William Heath of c.1829 (public domain image via Wikimedia Commons)

John Coakley Lettsom firmly believed in the efficacy of sea air and sea bathing for the treatment of scrofula (also known as the king’s evil, this skin disease is caused by a form of tuberculosis). Lettsom’s idea to found an infirmary at Margate for the poor was given royal patronage almost from the start, so his intention in July 1791 to found the ‘Margate Infirmary for the Relief of the Poor whose Diseases require Sea-Bathing’ soon changed to the ‘Royal Sea Bathing Infirmary’.

This early print shows the main elevation as designed by Pridden and is dated 1793. Reproduced under Creative Commons Licence CC BY 4.0 via Wellcome Collection

Margate, on the north-east coast of Kent, offered sheltered conditions and a moderate climate. It was within easy reach of London by boat. The site was outside the town in Westbrook, a tiny hamlet that remained largely undeveloped until after the First World War. The new building was designed with access to fresh air in mind, with open arcades and verandas. Its clerical architect, the Reverend John Pridden, was an enthusiastic supporter of Lettsom. He was both an antiquary and an amateur architect – not an especially unusual combination of interests in Georgian Britain.

Floor plans and elevation of the infirmary by Darton & Harvey. Wellcome Collection Creative Commons Licence CC BY 4.0

His first design was drawn up as early as June 1791 for a hospital large enough for 92 patients. In the end this proved too ambitious and was simplified to provide for 30 patients. With the plans approved, building work began some time after May 1793 and it was ready by the spring of 1796. Though much altered, Pridden’s building survives at the heart of the present complex.

West façade of the infirmary. Photographed in September 1991 © H. Richardson

Pridden’s design prefigured open-air sanatoria of the early twentieth century, with wards opening out on to colonnades, or piazzas as he called them, so that beds could be pushed out into the open air. There were wards with nine or six beds on either side of a two-storey block containing offices and staff accommodation.

Detail from the OS Town Plan of 1874

The Royal Sea Bathing Infirmary was a charitable institution, funded by subscriptions and donations. Patients were admitted on the recommendation of the governors after examination by a medical board in London. Out-patients as well as in-patients were treated.

Sea Bathing Machine at Margate. Wellcome Collection Creative Commons Licence CC BY 4.0

The sea-bathing element of the treatment was administered under the supervision of bath nurses, who escorted patients down to the shore in the hospital’s own bathing machine in order for them to be fully immersed in the water. In addition to this stimulation, the fresh air and decent food provided were of great benefit.

View of the infirmary from the Nurses’ Home, photographed in 1991. This shows how close the sea is to the hospital. On the left can be glimpsed the flat roof of the 1880s extension

Until the 1850s the infirmary was only open during the summer. In 1853 indoor salt water baths were introduced. A horse-driven pump forced sea water up from the shore 30 ft below. This facility allowed the hospital to remain open all year round. By then the hospital had expanded, with a new single-storey wing added to the south in 1816 that increased the capacity to 90 beds. Another wing, this time of two storeys, had been added by about 1840 facing north. The extended infirmary was subsequently altered and further extended to give it a more coherent appearance with Greek Revival dressings. It was raised to two storeys throughout, and the west-facing entrance front given a tetrastyle Doric portico (the columns supposedly came for nearby Holland House). The portico was later moved to its present position on the south front.

The new wing added to the west of the hospital in the 1880s. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

Wards for children were added in 1857-8. A large dining hall and a school were also added, connected to the main building by a covered way, and a house for the Governor. More substantial additions were made in the 1880s.

The view from the roof terrace, looking west over the bay towards Westbrook. Photographed in 1991 © H. Richardson

James Knowles Junior produced the designs for a long, single-storey building adjoining the old hospital to the west – hence the re-siting of the portico.

Detail of the ground plan from H. C. Burdett’s Hospitals and Asylums of the World, Portfolio of Plans, 1893, showing the southern end of the new wing.

Funds for the extension were donated by Sir Erasmus Wilson, a director of the hospital who had a house at Westgate just up the coast. He gave £30,000 to build more wards, a heated indoor swimming pool and a chapel. The statue in front of the main entrance is of Wilson, erected in his honour in 1896.

The south front of the former Sea Bathing Infirmary with statue of Sir Erasmus Wilson in the foreground. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

A description of the new ward block noted:

The general wards, which are provided with hot and cold sea-water baths, are utilised largely for “dressing” the tubercular joints and glands, and for sleeping accommodation during unusually inclement weather. For the most part, however, the patients remain both by day and night on the verandah surrounding the “quadrangle”. In this position the patients while in their beds are able to enjoy the sea air both by day and night, while those who are able to move about secure exercise in the grounds and, in suitable cases, sea-bathing on the beach. [PP 1907, XXVII, 406-7]

The ward block also had a flat roof, creating a promenade, protected by an attractive balustrade of pinkish terracotta. To the south of the ward block was the swimming bath, supplied with fresh sea water by the horse pump which piped water to underground tanks.

The 1880s wing, looking towards the chapel. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

More architecturally ornate is the Gothic chapel. Its tall nave and semi-circular apse is reminiscent of Gilbert Scott’s collegiate chapels.

The 1880s wing seen from the east, with the chapel to the left and the former swimming bath building. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson
The same part of the hospital – the chapel and swimming bath – in 1991.  © H. Richardson

The interior was given a complex decorative scheme. Stained-glass windows illustrated Christ healing the sick, the virtues, and medicinal plants, while a mural depicted the story of Naaman bathing in the River Jordan.

Chapel interior photographed in 1991

Other murals depicted saints, angels and the Tree of Knowledge. Part of the nave was kept free of seats to enable beds or wheelchairs to be brought in directly from the quadrangle verandah.

The east end of the chapel, with its apsidal end, designed by James Knowles Junior. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson

During the First World War the hospital treated British and Belgian servicemen with TB, as well as the wounded and those suffering from shell shock. A new wing, the King George V Wing, was built in 1919-20 to the west of the main complex, but this has now been demolished.

Later additions to the site, including, to the right, part of the George V Wing. Photographed in 1991 © H. Richardson

The last major addition to the site was the nurses’ home, on the corner of Canterbury and Westbrook Roads. Originally built in 1922, it was extended in 1935 from two storeys to four.

The former nurses’ home. Photographed in 2017 © H. Richardson
View of the chapel from the north-east. Photographed in 1991 © H. Richardson
Looking northwards out to sea along the roof terrace. Photographed in 1991 © H. Richardson
Looking east from the roof terrace. Photographed in 1991 © H. Richardson


Anon 1812. An Account of the Proceedings for establishing Sea-Water and other Baths, and an Infirmary, in the vicinity of London…
British Medical Journal (BMJ), 1898, ii, 1768
Cazin, Le Dr H 1885. De L’influence des Bains de Mer sur La Scrofule des Enfants
Colvin, H M 1978. A Biographical Dictionary of British   Architects 1600-1840
Gentleman’s Magazine, vol.LXVII (ii), Oct. 1797, 841; LXXXVI (i), Jan. 1816, 17
Honour, H 1953. ‘An Epic of Ruin-building’. In Country Life, 10 Dec. 1953
 Illustrated London News, 16 Sept. 1882, 298
Kent Record Office, Maidstone
Lettsom, J C 1801. Hints Designed to promote Benificence, Temperance & Medical Science (3 vols)
MacDougall, P 1984. ‘A Seabathing Infirmary’. In Bygone Kent, vol.5, No.9, Sept. 1984, 511-6
Metcalf, P 1980. James Knowles Victorian Editor and Architect
Nursing Times, 10 March 1977, 9-12
(PP) Parliamentary Papers 1907, XXVII. Annual Report of the Medical Officer of the Local Government Board
Royal Sea Bathing Hospital Archives
Strange, F G St Clair 1991. The History of the Royal Sea Bathing Hospital Margate 1791-1971
Whyman, J 1981. Aspects of Holidaymaking and Resort Development within the Isle of Thanet, with particular reference to Margate, circa 1736 to circa 1840 (vol.2)

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49 thoughts on “Margate’s Sea Bathing Hospital

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  2. How lovely to see the sea bathing hospital as it was my father-in-law was in this hospital as a child I used to jokingly laugh when he reminisced about it I would have loved to know more about his time there unfortunately he passed away and I lost the opportunity

    • My mother trained as a nurse in the hospital at the outbreak of World War 11. She has written an account of her time there as a trainee nurse. She also mentions that they treated soldiers who had been evacuated from Dunkirk. They dealt with 100 soldiers who had suffered from ‘exposure to seawater and measles, but not wounded otherwise. This was hectic, a case of all hands on deck.’

      • Thank you for this Graham, how wonderful to have your mother’s account of her time there. If you would like to share any of it here, I would be very happy to put a post up about her experiences.

  3. Great article. Are there any records relating to admission held anywhere do you know? My grandmother went to the Hospital as a child.

  4. Hello. My mum was sent to the hospital when she was about 9 – therefore about 1947. She loved it there although found it very traumatic as in those days parents didn’t really explain things to children, she was just dropped at the station and sent off with strangers to the hospital- obviously my Nan (her mum) was doing what she thought was best for her, but with 3 other children she couldn’t afford to visit from Sussex as much as she no doubt would have liked……is there anyone out there who was in the children’s ward around that time? If so, my mum would LOVE to make contact, back then she was called Barbara fogden seale, she was from Eastbourne.

    • Hi Tina, my mother and father were both in the R.S.B.H. around this time which is where they met. Sadly, we lost mum in Nov 2019 and dad in August 2020. Although they were both in hospital for a couple of years, they never really spoke much about it, only that they met there. Age wise they both would have been somewhere around 13 – 16 years old. Whilst sorting out their posessions I came across an autograph book of mothers with lots of lovely messages left by friends and staff while she was in the R.S.B.H. She also came from Eastbourne.

  5. I was a patient at the Royal Sea Bathing in 1968 for 4 weeks. The weather was good most of the time so we, in our beds, were pushed out onto a sunny balcony every morning. Food was pretty awful, if I remember rightly!

  6. What about the orthopedic work at the hospital – there is no mention of it here. My sister was admitted in 1972 for a back operation. Is there anyone else who was there at that time? Where can I find out more information about what happened to her?

    • I was at there in 1968 for about four weeks with a slipped disc. But because I was only 16 years old they put me on the Children’s Ward. My consultant was called Dr Barter.

  7. My Mother Gretta White trained as a nurse there 1938-1939returning to Ireland to marry then .
    If anyone ever recalled her .

  8. Gretta ‘s sisters Lena, Kitty/Catherine ,Mamie White , Tooreen, D
    unmanway Ireland ,also trained there at the same time.

  9. Hi My Mum was in the hospital 1948 until 1950 her Dr was Armstrong and one of the nurses was called Sister peel, it would be lovely to hear from anyone that was there then,

    • Hi Rosemarie, my mother and father were both in the R.S.B.H. around this time which is where they met. Sadly, we lost mum in Nov 2019 and dad in August 2020. Although they were both in hospital for a couple of years, they never really spoke much about it, only that they met there. Age wise they both would have been somewhere around 13 – 16 years old. Whilst sorting out their possession’s I came across an autograph book of mothers with lots of lovely messages left by friends and staff while she was in the R.S.B.H.

      • I was an inpatient as a child in 1967-68
        . I remember the boy in the bed next to me who kept stealing a toy car from me and the kind nurse who let me eat fruit cake in the bath !

        If anyone can remember me that would be good to speak to them .🙂

      • If you are facing toward Westbrook Beach, there were three Wards beneath the Terrace, one was the Female Childrens, Victoria Ward, the other two were Female Adult, Cunningham (If memory serves), and Alexandra Ward which was nearest to the sea.

      • I believe it was a mixed ward ? I seem to remember walking through a ward full of children who had polio as their legs and or arms were strapped in metal calipers .That image haunted me till this day .

      • I believe, that that memory may have been in the Physiotherapy Department, as there was not a mixed Childrens Ward at RSBH. I can understand how those images linger on for some time, because at age seven, I was in Margate Hospital Childrens Ward, and for many years I could not get the cries of an American boy with burns, whenever they changed his dressings out of my mind.

      • Thank you George. That explains a lot . I had an operation on my neck to correct a birth defect resulting in a plaster cast covering the whole of my upper body and over my head . This I wore for 6 months after the operation to cut muscles on one side of my neck . I was around 3-4 at the time , nearer 4 years . I even have a photo showing me sitting on some grass on what seems to be overlooking the sea from this time .

      • The lawn you were sitting on was approximately 100 metres square, from which you could see Westbrook beach, and the North Sea. Your surgeon would have been, either Mr. Wright, or Mr. Strange? I hope that that six months of purgatory in plaster was worth all the effort!

  10. I was a student nurse at the Royal Seabathing Hospital in 1967. I was seconded from The Isle of Thanet District Hospital during my 3 years training. I remember the terraces where beds were wheeled onto and the patients taking in the air and sun. I also remember the beautiful sunsets.

    • Hi Eleanor ,

      I was around 3-4 years old when I had an operation to correct a birth defect on my neck . I still have a photo of me sitting on grass outside . Sadly my mother who was a nurse died just prior to my operation and my father doesnt like to talk about this time . If you can remember me – a very long shot I know – please get in touch . My memory of that time was sitting in the bath eating fruit cake ,. seeing all the other children in the ward lying with calipers attached to arms and legs . My bed was next to a boy who kept stealing a toy police car ! . I had bright red hair and freckles – now both gone . My father was a nurse at the time but not in this hospital . So for the rambling…
      I myself am now a community nurse in Inverness . Thank you .

  11. I did my orthopaedic nursing certificate at the Sea Bathing from 1971 – 1973 you could start at 17. Great memories of those days and I made life long friends. Probably the best grounding for nursing long hours and hard work but lots of laughs

  12. I was a PE student at Nonington College of PE in the mid 1970’s. I spent six weeks in the Sea Bathing Hospital either side of Easter 1975 for traction treatment for an L4/5 disc problem. Most days the beds were pushed out into the court yard area and I returned to college with a mended back and a sun tan. Being tied into a bed was hard at times but the staff and my treatment were both fantastic. I visit Margate for concerts and days out and have a huge soft spot for the hospital. I also taught for 35 years. Thank you the Royal Sea Bathing Hospital.

  13. I was there for 3 weeks in the spring of 1962. I was 5 years old and my parents were advised that after 9 weeks in Worthing hospital I would need to convalesce. The most traumatic 3 weeks of my early life. I remember laying in bed crying most of the time and having my bed pushed outside on to a balcony. It was very upsetting being left with total strangers and no visits from my family who had visited me for the one hour allowed every day while I was in Worthing Hospital. Every day I asked if could go home. I have never forgotten those 3 weeks. My poor parents were just as traumatised as I was when they had to leave me there. These days it would never happen.

  14. My daughter Sarah was there for nearly six months 1972 she had dislocated hip they had a fete which we had a visit from Larry Grayson,he actually cried which was lovely she was a pretty baby she was born on 6th June 1972

  15. I had polio and resided in this hospital from August 1957 to December 1957. After 40 days of quarantine, my parents were allowed to see me on visits Sunday afternoons. It was very traumatizing as I was 6 years old and did not understand why I was paralyzed, and why I did not see familiar faces for 40 days. Does anyone have photos of the pool in the hospital, or of iron lungs?

  16. i was in seabathing hospital when i was 17 i had r arthritis i had my 1st hip replacement at 21 i was in the ward 1 time then as you recover you move to the varander and have a view of the garden there was a couple of wards if i remember right they had amazing staff so caring so patient the ladys be at 1 end and the men at the other end, i was in there a few times they was lovely they even let me do tea once and they helped me, made friends i would see again when admitted a few times thank to those amazing staff have fond memories of the hospital, For a while the youngest to have the hip replacement , until a younger girl went in a few yrs later the way that hip replacements was done was so different back using foam leg supports to hold leg still was in hospital then for hip replace ment for 2 wks then they would let you home for hip replacements had first 1sts hip done 1987 amazing place was sad when they stopped it being a hospital, it was dated and had problems but they made a wing at qeqm seabathing ward i been in there its not the same but its good to see the photos on the walls, i was 21 and a newly wed, known then as debra davenport, i am sure there be a record of it i know its on my hospital records . the 1st hips lasted 17yrs the other side done a few yrs later last 18 yrs. was amazing they helped as all the ops i have had done since. The nurses was amazing there so patient with us never a harsh word spoken great doctor to mr withrington was great doctor he invented the finger exercise machine, he had the idea as my hand was terrible i called it the feddy machine as was aroune then when that fim was made i tried it and i know its still going now he was a clever man, seabathing was known as the ARTHRITIS hospital, AND WANT A WONDERFULL ENERGY IT HAD i miss that there was amazing they had time for us, the hydro pool was small square with a step then short walk an other step then short walk then rail then go to shoulder deep water always warm ready to do the exercises asmazing the physio would come in with us and be 1 out side, the gym was next door to the hydro pool will never forget it was history the gym had the bars to walk on we was give exercises to do which i have continued to this day had the zimmers the old fashioned wheel chairs with wooden foot wheel that moved, want to do amazing hospital and we used to go the the lovely small chapel on Sunday had lovely stained window and they would even wheel some beds in if they couldn’t get out to a chair, was a Vicor that was based there he was nice chap, these old bed tables different than 1s now these had a lip so things could fall off would not be on wheels, was lovely place to recover they would push us there in the wheel chairs into the church i remember it as the picture shows and being in beds where those glass roofs was with sliding doors they would leave a bit open in summer would see my x husband mike drive in and other family members they cared for us all MY x husband and i split but i have an amazing husband Keith King he my husband 40 plus operation later i still do the exercie’s i was told to must keep fighting the arthritis lovely to see its records are kept an amazing place is SeaBathing hospital has a special place in my heart thank you and all those to cared for us thank you and still are in SEABATHING WARD CONTINUE IS A WARD WITH THE PHOTO ALONG IT CORRIDORS now, in QEQM HOSPITAL MARGATE

  17. I spent my first Senior Senior House Officer assignment in this beautiful environment 1987-1988. I will never forget given the chance for my first professional experience and the great training. Thanks to the consultants, registrars, sisters and nurses who beared with me and my basic English language skills. Thanks to my dear Indian colleague Prahlad, who showed me all the tricks and tipps to get acquainted to my life in Britain. I was able to help treating all kind of orthopedic patients, being it old age gentleman with osteoarthritis as well as the nice ladies suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Kids with congenital dislocated hips were treated as well as old chaps in the urology ward. Will never forget this and being grateful for the time and experience.

  18. I worked in Murthly hospital during my early nurse training, between 1978-1980. I loved it. I recently had a drive through and although unrecognisable the memories came flooding back when I recognised Pinel lodge (where I was most of the time) and the nurses home (which I didn’t stay in)
    Those were the days before more refined antipsychotics, so patients showed long term side effects, and they stayed in these hospitals for long long periods so were institutionalised.
    I wish I could go back in time and see it all again!

  19. I commenced my Orthopᴂdic student nurse training at RSBH, April 9th 1962, concluding May 31st 1964, sadly failing my finals on the first attempt, however, I applied to the Orthopᴂdic Nursing Board and took my finals at Stanford Orthopᴂdic Hospital, garnering my Orthopᴂdic Nursing Certificate. I later went on to complete my State Registered Nurse training.

    RSBH, being also an OrthopᴂdicTb Sanitarium, in company with Pulmonary Tb, our training was expanded by this awful disease. Some of the Orthopᴂdic Tb patients were there when I started and still there when I left.

    A couple of years after my departure, I heard an incredible report of one special boy, who was nursed in a plaster bed due to his Paraplegia, on Archibald Boys Ward. I believe he was seven when he suddenly collapsed. For some ten or more years, he suddenly felt the feeling that he needed to urinate, and latterly he experienced pins and needles in his legs, and gradually started to move them. I was only with him for three months of my training, but it truly touched my heart, when I was enthusiastically told of his outcome.

    I nursed for forty-eight years, and have seen many patients achieve things that we never dared dream to see, and one cannot do what we nurses do without realising, that there is a higher power guiding us in our daily duties. God bless the Royal Sea Bathing Hospital.

  20. I am currently researching my family tree and have just come across this very interesting hospital. A cousin of mine (the son-in-law of a sister of my grandmother) called Reginald John Colby died here in 1931 at the age of 27. He had been married for just 3 years and I am not sure whether he had any children.

    • See: THE HISTORY OF THE ROYAL SEA BATHING HOSPITAL 1791 – 1991 Author: F.G. ST CLAIR STRANGE. MERESBOROUGH BOOKS Printed By Biddles Limited, Guildford

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  23. I was a cadet nurse at the Sea Bathing from January 1965 till September 1965 I worked on Victoria ward children’s orthopedic ward in September I started my nurse training loved every minute there had great fun

    • Very interesting. My mother, Helen Shanahan, trained as a nurse during World War 2, and was based in the Seabathing Hospital for some of her training. She wrote fondly about the location, and dealt with a wide range off patients including some military casualties arising from Dunkirk.

  24. Susan Trott, (Maiden Name) this is George Morgan, Susan you are the Godmother to my son Richard, we trained for ONC at RSBH from April 1962 -May 1964, you and I went for our Practical, at Stanford in Middlesex, and as we passed through London, we watched the last Trooping of the Colour rehearsal.
    Others, also using Maiden, Name, where appropriate: Kathy Holiday, Stella Shawcase, (?) Colin Matthews, (?) Day, you married Diane Cant, and others whose names I cannot recall. Should you ever see this, please check me out on Facebook, email.

  25. I lived in the nurses home in room 31 on the first floor in 1981-81, a third year SRN student up at the QEII main hospital up the top of the town. I never got to see inside the Sea Bathing. I just lived in the 60% empty nurses home. Lonely times. I suppose the place is better preserved as apartments than being knocked down. Thanks very much for such an informative article and especially the photos. I flew over the sea in front…..or behind 😂 the hospital in a Spitfire a few years ago. You get a different perspective from the air. I think the Victorians had the right idea about fresh air and good nutrition, and nurses who saw their work as a vocation.

  26. Hello Caroline, after the Royal Army Medical Corps, I also trained for my SRN at QEQMH, then called the Isle of Thanet District Hospital. were you in Devon House with Mr. Ashe, and Colin Prew? As too the RSBH Nursing Home, in my day the building was full, and included the Matron and Deputy Matron’s apartments. The men were in a different building, The Hodgeson, we were upstairs and the “Special Clinic” downstairs. The girls had to be in by 9:00 p.m. unless they had a late pass, 10:00 p.m. It was not an infrequent occurrence to get a knock on my door at one or two o’clock in the morning, to hear: “George, can you get us into the home?” Which meant that I had to climb up a drain pipe into a bathroom, then ‘very quietly’ go downstairs and open that red front door! “Happy Days.” Are you still working? I retired in 2010. Forty-eight wonderful years, forty-three in Theatre, in both England and America to where I immigrated in 1983.

  27. In the last photograph the small building in the middle was the hospital school for the children.I taught there from 1977 to 1984.
    The school was managed by Kent Education.
    Everyday the children were brought in from the children’s ward at 9am by the porters and returned to the ward at 3.30pm.There were two classrooms and I was responsible for teaching and supporting secondary age pupils.We also had a few day children.
    There were two full time teachers myself and the headteacher and two part time .I enjoyed working there ,our aim was to provide the children with a normal school day while taking into account their varied medical conditions.
    I consider myself so fortunate to have worked in such a unique establishment.

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