Hospital for Women

Soho Square, W1N 6JB

Medical dates:

Medical character:

1842 - 1988


The Hospital was founded in 1842 in Red Lion Square by Dr Protheroe Smith, a prominent London obstetrician.  It was reputed to be the first hospital in London for the 'treatment of those maladies which neither rank, nor wealth, nor character can avert from the female sex'.

The Hospital soon outgrew its Red Lion Square premises and, in 1852, moved to buildings at 30 Soho Square and 1 Frith Street.  At this time 20 in-patients could be accommodated.  By 1862 there were 50 beds.

In 1865 the freehold for the house next door, 29 Soho Square, became available and the hospital bought it for £2540.

Between 1867 and 1869 no. 29 was rebuilt in red brick with an extra two storeys being added for private patient accommodation.

In 1882 No. 2 Frith Street was purchased; it was rebuilt in 1894 to contain the Out-Patients Department and the nurses' dormitories.

In 1904 the King Edward's Hospital Fund suggested that the Hospital move from central London, but the Hospital Committee decided that none of the alternative sites were better than the current one.  Plans for a new building on the same site fell through due to lack of money, but modified alterations to 29-30 Soho Square were carried out in 1909.  A new stuccoed facade was added.  Nos. 3 and 4 Frith Street were incorporated into the Hospital building.  The King Edward's Hospital Fund provided most of the £20,500 for the project.

During WW2 the Hospital was closed.

In 1988 it merged with the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson Hospital in Euston Road.

Present status (May 2008)

The building is now The Soho Centre - a walk-in clinic providing health information, advice and treatment for minor illnesses and injuries for people who live, work or are visiting the area.

Hospital for WomenHospital for Women

No. 29 Soho Square (left) and No. 30 (right).

Hospital for Women

The Hospital building retains the appearance of two houses - No. 29 is three windows wide and five storeys high, while No. 30 is four windows wide and has a mansard roof.

Hospital for Women

The doorway of No. 30 Soho Square with the name of the Hospital inscribed above. A notice directs patients to the clinic next door in Frith Street.

Hospital for Women Hospital for Women

The Walk-In Clinic in Frith Street (left) and its entrance (right).

Hospital for Women

The Hospital building in Frith Street as seen looking north to Soho Square.

During the second half of the 19th century several of the houses in Soho Square were occupied by small hospitals - the Hospital for Women at 29-30, and at No. 32 both the Dental Hospital of London and the National Hospital for Diseases of the Heart.





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