Erin Lodge Red Cross Hospital
21 Oatlands Avenue, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 9SR
Medical dates:

Medical character:
1914 -1918

Convalescent (military)

In November 1914 Mrs Farmer of Beechcroft, Oatlands, lent her property Erin Lodge, which was untenanted at the time, to the British Red Cross Society for use as an auxiliary military hospital.

The house was furnished and equipped, and the Erin Lodge Red Cross Hospital opened on 13th November with 20 beds.  It was affiliated to the Third London General Hospital.

Mrs Farmer later withdrew her support and the Hospital continued under the auspices of the Red Cross.

In August 1916 the Hospital was forced to close when the Matron decided to serve elsewhere.

However, it re-opened in March 1917 with 35 beds (later 40), and was affiliated to the Fifth London General Hospital.  The house had by this time become the property of a Miss Maude.

The medical and nursing staff consisted of a Medical Officer, a Matron, a trained nurse, a masseuse and a living-in member of the local Voluntary Aid Detachment (V.A.D.), whose Commandant was Mrs Ethel Locke-King.  Several members of the local V.A.D. provided part-time help with nursing and domestic chores.

The patients stayed on average some 26 days.  They were made Honorary Members of the Oatlands Park Club, and enjoyed billiards and darts tournaments against  the local members.  

In 1918 an Open Day was held on St Patrick's Eve (16th March), the Hospital's first birthday.  Visitors were allowed to look around from 2 o'clock until 4 o'clock.  They were also asked to bring gifts - saucepans, garden tools, seeds, games and puzzles, white paint, and foods like jam, coffee and dates.

The Hospital closed in July 1918.  During the 176 days it was open in 1918, some 288 patients had received treatment.

Present status (October 2011)

The building later became a nursing home.  It has since been demolished and replaced with new housing.

Erin Lodge site  Erin Lodge site
The site of Erin Lodge is now occupied by No. 23 Oatlands Avenue (left) and the corner house in Woodland Grove (right).

Erin Lodge site  Erin Lodge site
The current No. 21 Oatlands Avenue.
Readers' comments

Erin Lodge
A back view of Erin Lodge, taken sometime during the 1920s.

(Photograph courtesy of Dr N.F. Stedman)
References (Accessed 15th August 2017)

(Author unstated) 1917 Red Cross work in Surrey during 1917.  British Red Cross Surrey Branch, 5th Annual Report.

(Author unstated) 1917 List of the various hospitals treating military cases in the United Kingdom.  London, H.M.S.O.

Smith J 1996 Monograph No. 58.  Auxliary and Military Hospitals in Weybridge and Walton during the First World War.  Walton and Weybridge Local History Society.

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