Charlton House
Auxiliary Hospital

Charlton Road, Old Charlton, SE7 8RE

Medical dates:

Medical character:
1918 - 1919

Convalescent (military)
In October 1918 Sir Spencer and Lady Maryon-Wilson gave free use of part of Charlton House to the British Red Cross Society as an auxiliary military hospital.

The Charlton House Auxiliary Hospital opened on 14th October, less than a month before the signing of the Armistice.  Designated as a Class A hospital, it was affiliated to the Brook War Hospital.  It had been intended to have 70 beds but initially only 50 were equipped (it later had 72 beds).  On the first day of its opening 35 servicemen were admitted, including 12 stretcher cases.

The paid staff consisted of a Sister-in-charge, a Day Sister and a Night Sister, and 1 full-time and 55 part-time members of Voluntary Aid Detachments from the Greenwich and Woolwich Division, who were unpaid volunteers.

It was purported that the house had a ghost and one room was left empty as the nurses refused point-blank to enter it.

The Hospital closed on 30th April 1919.  During its operational lifetime, some 168 patients had been admitted.

On closure the beds and bedding, which had been on loan from the Army Ordnance Department, were returned there.  Other redundant hospital equipment was sent to the Southwood Red Cross Hospital in Eltham, the Oakhurst Red Cross Hospital in Erith, the Seamen's Hospital and the Miller Hospital in Greenwich, St John's Hospital in Lewisham, and the Blackheath and Charlton Cottage Hospital and Woolwich, Plumstead and District  Hospital in Woolwich.  The remaining household articles were sold and the money used to restore Charlton House to its original state.

Present status (July 2010)

Charlton House and its grounds were sold to Greenwich Borough Council in 1925.

The Grade I listed Jacobean manor house is now a licensed venue for civil partnership or wedding ceremonies, and can also be hired for other functions.  

The grounds are a public park.

While most of the house is not open to the general public, a cafe for visitors to the park is housed in the central foyer of the building.

Charlton House
Charlton House was built between 1607 and 1612.

Charlton House
The original gateway  to Charlton House.  The green in front of the house was enclosed in 1829 by the Maryon-Wilson family and a new entrance drive installed.

Charlton House   Charlton House   
The front of the House showing the relationship of the former entrance arch to the building (left).  The back of the building, as seen from the garden (right).

Charlton House
The summer house was built around 1630.  In 1938 it was converted into a public lavatory, but this is now closed.

(Author unstated) 1925 The British Red Cross Society. County of London Branch Annual Reports 1914-1924.  London, Harrison & Sons.

Reid H 1949 British Red Cross Society.  Story of the County of London Branch.  London, British Red Cross Society.


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