|LOST HOSPITALS OF LONDON
Uxbridge Country Hospital
Harefield Place, The Drive, Uxbridge, Middlesex UB10 8AQ
|1935 - 1969
In 1935 Harefield Place, a large mansion previously known as Harefield Lodge, was acquired by the Middlesex County Council for use as an annexe to Hillingdon County Hospital. It was named the Harefield Country Hospital and had 51 beds for pre-convalescent female patients and post-maternity cases, and 12 cots. The patients were transferred to the Hospital for the final stages of hospital treatment, post-operative or other illnesses, or for the latter part of their lying-in period, when they still needed nursing attention but less intensive medical treatment. Some 50% of patients came from Hillingdon Hospital and the remainder from other hospitals in the County of Middlesex.
The Hospital had a spacious garden of 22 acres, with a lawn overshadowed by magnificent trees, which required five gardeners to maintain it. One half of the garden was used by patients and the other half by staff.
The Hospital joined the NHS in 1948 as the Uxbridge Country Hospital, under the control of the Uxbridge Group Hospital Management Committee, part of the North West Metropolitan Regional Hospital Board. By this time most patients had been transferred from Hillingdon Hospital - only 3% came from other hospitals in Middlesex.
In 1950 it had 61 beds and, in 1952, 63.
By 1954 the number of beds had been reduced to 51.
In 1957 the weekly cost of an in-patient was £14 18s 0d (£14.90).
In 1958 the old stable was demolished because of its dangerous condition and its site made into a car park. The driveway was also resurfaced.
In 1960 the area for the kitchen garden was reduced and the land devoted to fruit growing extended.
By 1961 the low bed occupancy was causing concern, but it was believed that this would improve when building work began at the Hillingdon Hospital site.
In 1963 The Pinnacles Nurses' Home was rewired following the hard frosts of the 1962/3 winter.
In 1966 the wards were temporarily converted to provide accommodation for nursing staff from Hillingdon Hospital.
The Hospital closed in 1969.
Present status (July 2008)
The building is the headquarters of the DVD rental chain Blockbuster.
Update: September 2013
In 2010 Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy.
A planning application was filed to gain permission to convert the building into a care home, but this did not happen.
The premises are now available to rent as an office block.
Update: August 2020
Plans were submitted in 2015 to convert the building into apartments.
The mansion is now part of an apartment block complex - Harefield Place.
Photographs obtained in July 2008.
The gateway off The Drive with a discreet sign for Blockbuster on the right-hand gatepost.
The Grade II listed Harefield Place was built in the early 19th century. It has been converted into a combination of open plan and separate office accommodation.
A semi-circular extension was added in the early 1980s.
The side elevation of the main building.
A postcard of the rear elevation of Uxbridge Country Hospital.
(Photograph by courtesy of Richard Willis)
|References (Accessed 23rd August 2020)
Wingfield H 2003 The workhouse and hospital at Hillingdon (Middlesex) 1744-1967. London, Hillingdon Hospital NHS Trust.
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