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Thread: Maiden law mortuary July 2016

  1. #1
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    Default Maiden law mortuary July 2016


    Maiden law

    Visited with @Dangle_Angle and @GK_WAX was the second place we visited in out Durham trip. A small morgue with a single porcelain slab and a fridge in side room nice little place this and soon to be demolished. Here's some photos from the day and history...


    Early in 1902 the Medical Officer of Health for Consett, Dr. A. D. M. MacIntyre, being worried about the possibility of an outbreak of Smallpox*in the area, suggested in his annual report that the Lanchester Joint Hospital Board should provide a special Hospital in some central position exclusively for the isolation of this disease. Chaos due to cross infection would result if cases of Scarlet Fever and Small pox were congregated together in one ward. To the Board’s credit, prompt action ensued. Within a year, in 1903, a permanent Smallpox Hospital, known as Howden Bank or Maiden Law Smallpox Hospital had been erected at Mawsfield, Maiden Law. This was a galvanised iron building on the opposite side of the road to the present Sanitorium. In this instance combined Medical foresight and administrative action was rewarded because in 1903 an outbreak of twenty-two cases of Smallpox occurred and these were removed directly to the new Hospital.

    In 1906 Tuberculosis was a major problem in Consett. Great difficulty occurred in admitting cases to Stanhope Sanitorium, which was at that time the nearest establishment for this disease. It was hoped that the County Authorities would undertake the erection of a local public Sanitorium. By 1906 the Smallpox epidemic having subsided, the vacant Howden Bank Smallpox Hospital was temporarily converted to a small Sanitorium and this afforded an interim solution to the problem. Patients on admission were obliged to pay 12s. 6d. a week, as a proportion of the cost of treatment.

    Between the two wars Howden Bank reverted to its original use for Smallpox cases. After the Second World War, with the virtual disappearance of Smallpox, the Hospital was sold to Laing & Co. and was used as a clothing factory. While in use in this capacity, the building was destroyed by fire.
    To summarise the situation in Consett and district so far, there existed by 1910 a Workhouse Hospital at Lanchester, an Iron Company Infirmary at Consett, an Isolation Hospital at Leadgate (Villa Real), and Howden Bank Smallpox Hospital and a Sanitorium. It is difficult to realise that just over fifty years ago, Consett, with its population of 30,000 had still no facilities for Surgical or Hospital Maternity work, and had to rely on transfer of cases to either Newcastle or Durham























    ㄥ丹∨工れ◯

  2. Thanks given by: caradon, Hugh Jorgan, HughieD, krela, thorfrun
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  4. #2
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    I was going to say very cute, but I'm not sure that's the right word...

  5. #3
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    I would say that mortuaries are pretty morbid but you've photographed it well. Not a big mortuary by the looks of it.
    When the going gets tough - the tough get going.

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