|LOST HOSPITALS OF LONDON|
Rosslyn Lodge Auxiliary
Rosslyn Lodge, Lyndhurst Road, Hampstead, NW3
|1916 - 1919
As casualties mounted during WW1 there was a greatly increased need for hospital accommodation. Private owners of large houses were encouraged to lend their properties to the British Red Cross for use as auxiliary hospitals for the duration of the war.
In response to the appeal, Mr Herbert Hill agreed to loan his house, Rosslyn Lodge, an 18th century 4-bedroom mansion with a double coach house and a gardener's cottage.
The Rosslyn Lodge Auxiliary Military Hospital opened on 1st July 1916, affiliated with the Southwark Military Hospital. It was classified as Class A, that is, it received 'cot cases' (bedridden patients). It initially had 36 beds for sick and wounded servicemen, but as demand increased the building was extended to house 54 beds. The new ward was officially opened on 8th October 1917 by the concert singer, Madame Clara Butt.
Early in 1918 some 9 more beds were added.
In March 1918 the Hospital was damaged by bombs during a Zeppelin air-raid.
By the end of the war accommodation had increased and the Hospital had 104 beds. By this time the nursing staff consisted of 43 trained nurses, assisted by 4 full-time and 30 part-time members of the local Voluntary Aid Detachment.
Those patients who were able, were encouraged to garden and look after the extensive grounds.
The Hospital closed on 31st October 1919, having treated 2,227 patients during its operational life.
Present status (October 2009)
In 1975 Camden Council acquired the freehold to the property and a supported housing scheme was built in the southern part of the garden in 1978.
The west wing of Rosslyn Lodge was demolished in 1979 but the surviving portion of the building was bought by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) in 1982. It is now part of the Olave Centre, the headquarters of WAGGGS.
The east wing of the original Rosslyn Lodge (above and below) has been much altered.
The Olave Centre with a new west wing (above) and signage to the Centre by the driveway (below).
This photograph was taken at Rosslyn Lodge shortly before it closed. My grandfather was treated here after WW1 and is somewhere in the picture (going by the notes made by my mother). I believe he was in the Royal Fusliers based in London and had been quite badly wounded.
(Photographs courtesy of Mr Derek Vining).
|References (Accessed 13th October 2020)
(Author unstated) 1917 List of the various hospitals treating military cases in the United Kingdom. London, H.M.S.O.
(Author unstated) 1917 News in brief. The Red Cross 4, 83.
(Author unstated) 1917 News in brief. The Red Cross 4, 153.
(Author unstated) 1925 The British Red Cross Society. County of London Branch Annual Reports 1914-1924. London, Harrison & Sons.
Reay WTL 1920 The Specials. How They Served London. The Story of the Metropolitan Special Constabulary. London, William Heinemann, 213.
Reid H 1949 British Red Cross Society. Story of the County of London Branch. London, British Red Cross Society.
|Return to alphabetical list
Return to home page