LOST HOSPITALS OF LONDON

Weybridge Hospital
 22 Church Street, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 8DY
Medical dates:

Medical character:
1889 - 2017

General.  Later, GP.  Then  primary care and palliative care.

Weybridge Cottage Hospital opened in Balfour Road in 1889.  It was built on land purchased by Ethel Locke King (1864-1956), who donated it to the Trustees of the Hospital.

In April 1920, when the Brooklands Auxiliary Military Hospital closed, a Red Cross orthopaedic clinic opened.  Located in a hut built in the Hospital grounds the clinic was known as a Curative Post; it provided massage (physiotherapy) and electrical treatment for discharged servicemen still suffering from their wounds after WW1 (1914-1918).  (When the Post closed in 1926, the hut was used as an Out-Patients Department).

By the beginning of the 1920s it had been accepted that the Hospital needed to be enlarged, as demand was increasing at a considerable rate.  In 1922 a Building Committee was formed to raise funds to extend the Hospital but, by the following year, it was decided that the building and its facilities were quite inadequate, especially to cope with the increased number of surgical cases.  A new Hospital needed to be built.

The Chairman of the Building Committee approached Hugh Locke King (1848-1926) about purchasing the site of Vigo House in Church Street on which to build the new Hospital. To his surprise, Mr Locke King offered the piece of land as a gift.  An Appeal was raised for donations and the new Hospital was completed in 1927.

The new Weybridge Hospital was officially opened by Princess Beatrice on 27th June 1928.  It had 43 beds.  The former Hospital building in Balfour Road was renamed the Locke King Clinic.

In 1948 the Hospital and the Locke King Clinic joined the NHS under the control of the Woking and Chertsey Group Hospital Management Committee, part of the South West Metropolitan Regional Hospital Board.

In the early 1960s the Hospital was extended, with a new wing opening in November 1962 alongside the Children's Ward.

In 1964, when the Hospital had 42 beds, its management was taken over by the newly created North West Surrey Group Hospital Management Committee.

In 1970 the Children's Ward closed due to insufficient medical cover.

In 1974, following a major reorganisation of the NHS, the Hospital came under the control of the North West Surrey District Health Authority, part of the Surrey Area Health Authority of the South West Thames Regional Health Authority.  The local Health Authority built a new health centre adjacent to the Hospital to house a number of single or small GP practices (over the years, these merged into two large practices).

In 1977 a Continuing Care Unit was established in the Sam Beare Ward, which had previously been the 8-bedded Children's Ward.

In 1982 the Hospital had 41 general beds.

In 1987 the Richard Jenner Day Unit opened to provide support services for palliative care.

By 1990 the Hospital had 38 beds.  It was managed by the North West Surrey District Health Authority, part of the South West Thames Regional Health Authority.

With the introduction of the 'market place' system in the NHS, in 1992 the Hospital joined the Weybourne Community NHS Trust.  It had 30 beds for acute and GP patients, and consisted of three wards - the Sam Beare Ward (named after the surgeon at the Hospital, which had become a hospice ward), the Corrie Brown Ward (named after one of the nurses), the Ted Bradley Ward (named after one of the porters, which was for physically disabled people) plus the Richard Jenner Day Unit.  There was also an Out-Patients Department with X-ray and Physiotherapy Departments and an orthopaedic rehabilitation unit.  However, the Health Centre was struggling to cope with too much demand, while its building was suffering from structural problems.  Plans were made for a new building adjacent to the current one which would contain both a community hospital and a primary care centre.

In September 1998 work began on the new building.  The Hospital continued to operate while building work progressed.  Once the new Hospital was completed in 1999, the old one was demolished.

The new Weybridge Community Hospital and Primary Care Centre opened on 26th July 1999 (Princess Anne officially opened it the following spring). The building contained a Walk-In Centre for minor injuries and illnesses, the Sam Beare Ward with 8 beds for palliative care, the Corrie Brown Ward with 10 beds for rehabilitation, and two GP surgeries on the first floor.  The Richard Jenner Day Unit remained, with the Richard Jenner Memorial Trust funding the building of a conservatory for the unit.  The Ted Bradley Unit was transferred to Woking Hospital.  Out-patient services were provided by the North Surrey Primary Care Trust for ambulatory patients - X-rays, physiotherapy, audiology, podiatry, speech therapy and a dental surgery.  There were offices for social workers, health visitors, district and night nurses, and community mental health nurses.

In 2001 the Hospital had 30 beds.  It was managed by the Bournewood Community and Mental Health NHS Trust.

In 2004 the patients on Corrie Brown Ward were transferred to the Walton Hospital, and the beds were leased to the Princess Alice Hospice while its Esher facility was rebuilt.  Later the Sam Beare Ward took over the space, expanding from 8 to 10 beds.  The two additional beds were funded by the Richard Jenner Trust and the Friends of Weybridge Hospital for two years.

On 1st August 2006 the Sam Beare Palliative Care Ward came under the management of Woking Hospice.   The Ward closed on 11th December 2016 and relocated to a new purpose-built hospice in Woking.  The Richard Jenner Day Unit became a 'Resource Centre'.

Hospital services were managed by Virgin Care Services Ltd.

Present status (October 2017)

On 12th July 2017 the Hospital was completely destroyed by fire.  It is not yet known when it will reopen.

The GP surgeries moved to Walton Hospital, while walk-in services are available at both Woking Hospital and Ashford Hospital.
N.B. Photographs obtained in July 2011

Weybridge Hospital

The original Cottage Hospital in Balfour Road was built in 1889 (above and below).  It later became the Locke King Clinic.

Weybridge Hospital




Weybridge Hospital
The building is now Locke King House, an office block.


Weybridge Hospital
The driveway to the Hospital in Church Street.

Weybridge Hospital
Signage at the entrance.

Weybridge Hospital
The Hospital was rebuilt in 1998.

Weybridge Hospital
The 1998 foundation stone.

Weybridge Hospital
The car park is the site of the 1927 Hospital building.

Weybridge Hospital
Only the wall of the original Church Street site remains.
Reader's comments

Weybridge Hospital

My grandmother, Lilian Stedman, with her dog wearing a collection box for Cottage Hospital Day.  The photo was probably  taken in 1923.  My grandfather, Dr Osmund Stedman, helped to raise funds
in the 1920s for a new Hospital building.

Photograph courtesy of Dr Nick Stedman.

References (Accessed 2nd November 2017)

McPherson CA 1939 Report of the Medical Officer of Health. Urban District of Chertsey, the Urban District of Walton & Weybridge, and the Rural District of Bagshot. p.10, p.37.

Talbot C 2016 Sam Beare hospice in Weybridge closes after almost four decades serving the community.  Get Surrey (11th December).

http://people.elmbridgehundred.org.uk
https://mycouncil.surreycc.gov.uk

www.allaboutweybridge.co.uk
www.ashfordstpeters.nhs.uk
www.britainfromabove.org.uk
www.british-history.ac.uk
www.getsurrey.co.uk
www.nwsurreyccg.nhs.uk
www.pinewood-structures.co.uk
www.telegraph.co.uk
www.weybridgesociety.org.uk
www.weyriver.co.uk
www.wsbhospices.co.uk (1)
www.wsbhospices.co.uk (2)

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