Invalid and Crippled Children's Hospital
119 Balaam Street, Plaistow, E13 8AF
Medical dates:

Medical character:
1893 - 1976

Chronic.  Later, ENT and orthopaedics
In 1893 the Invalid and Crippled Children's Hospital was founded by the London Medical Mission Association, but was taken over by the Canning Town Women's Settlement the following year as a hospital for both women and children.

The Hospital transferred to two houses in Barking Road in 1895 and remained there until 1905, when it moved to a new building in Balaam Street.

In 1914, when the Invalid Children's Aid Association moved to the north of West Ham, the Invalid and Crippled Children's Society was formed to provide health and welfare services in the south half of the Borough.

In 1923 the 26-bedded Hospital in Balaam Street was conveyed rent-free by the Canning Town Women's Settlement to the South West Ham Invalid and Crippled Children's Society, on the understanding it would be used for children only.

In 1924 Prince Henry became patron of the Hospital.  In the following year X-ray appartus was installed.

The building was extended in 1932, with a new Out-Patients Department being added and, in 1933, a new open-air ward.  The Hospital then had 36 beds.  In 1936 a new wing was added to its country branch, the Sunshine Home, in Shoeburyness, Kent.

During WW2 only one ward was kept open.  The Sunshine Home was requisitioned by the Army Council.  Although the Balaam Street building suffered some bomb damage, there was not a direct hit.

The Hospital reopened fully after the war and, in 1948, it became part of the NHS under the control of the West Ham Group Hospital Management Committe, part of the North East Metropolitan Regaional Hospital Board.  It had 36 beds.

During the 1960s it specialised in orthopaedic surgery for children and women, as well as surgery for ear, nose and throat conditions, for example, removal of tonsils and adenoids.

In 1970 the Hospital had 33 beds.  

In 1974, following a major reorganisation of the NHS, the Hospital came under the administration of the Newham District Health Authority, part of the North East Thames Regional Health Authority.

It closed in 1976, along with many other small hospitals, following this reorganisation.

Present status (June 2008)

The building has been demolished.  New housing has been built on the site, but the original wall has been retained.

Balaam Street  Balaam Street
New housing on the site

Balham Park Health Care Centre    Balaam Park Health Care Centre

Ballaam Street     walkway
The Balaam Park Health Care Centre at 113 Balaam Street
Balaam Street

The NHS Psychological Treatment Centre at 121 Balaam Street in 2008.  It is now (2016) in use as the Mental Health Matters Employment Support Service.
References (Accessed 21st August 2016)

Coubrough M 1978 Profile: Invalid Children's Aid Association.  Child Care Health Development 4, 59-66.

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