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Thread: St Bartholomew's Mortuary, July 2019

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    Default St Bartholomew's Mortuary, July 2019


    Castle Morgue

    The Grade 2 listed structure which is built to the design of a castle houses the mortuary for the former St Bartholomew's Hospital.

    The hospital itself dates back to 1078 and has over 900 years of history, after closing in 2016 following another relocation.
    Like most mortuary's there is very little history to be found as most people focus more on the hospitals than the morgues individually.

    The hospital this morgue is situated along with was opened in 1863 close to the old site with a £4,000 grant from the Richard Watts charity.

    In 1923 a Friend's of the Bartholomew's hospital was founded they provided funds to the hospital which allowed for two new operating theatres, a modern pathology laboratory as well as wards.

    The hospital was volunteer run until 1948, when the NHS was founded and took over, after initially relying on a £1000 yearly grant from the charity.

    Documentation of this mortuary has been hard to find and most seem unaware what the white castle like structure is, therefore i can only assume the small area attached would be the pathological department.

    The Explores
    On the first visit we had been rushed for time and missed a lot of what i wanted to see and there fore the image quality lacks but thankfully, i gave us an idea on how to get back in.

    Later in the month we came back to find the entry had been sealed.

    Then in mid July it was said demolition had begun this would be our last chance, so we planned a day of other locations and went for it.

    Things started smoothly with a delightful chase from the police followed by a section one search and a moaning at by the armed response unit. We then got our selves on the train and headed off here, hopefully without getting detained again.

    We then found ourselves standing, looking at the castle like structure. Unfortunately on all visits I had forgotten to take any externals of the building.



    From the photos you will notice that the slab rotates around, I'm unsure why, a feature which makes it rather unique. Albeit, this lead to spinning one person around on it as fast as possible.

    The Photos

    The First Visit.





    The Third visit

    Body Fridge Castle Morgue

    Castle_Morgue

    The_Chapel_Of_Rest



    Anyway, That'll be all.

    The full album: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmFBjeyM

    KP
    ,
    Don't worry about security until you've been caught.

  2. Thanks given by: ExplorerX, Hugh Jorgan, HughieD, jmcjnr, Mearing, theartist
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  4. #2
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    The rotating table was a very common feature in the original daylight lit morgues and operating theatres. Your fourth image clearly shows why - no high intensity overhead lighting is evident. The pathologist needed to have the body dissections rotated into the light, coming from the high window, as he carried out the autopsy - there being no such thing as high intensity gas lights when this place was first built. Even when electric lighting first appeared, the high intensity theatre operating light was a long way in the future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirus_Strictus View Post
    The rotating table was a very common feature in the original daylight lit morgues and operating theatres. Your fourth image clearly shows why - no high intensity overhead lighting is evident. The pathologist needed to have the body dissections rotated into the light, coming from the high window, as he carried out the autopsy - there being no such thing as high intensity gas lights when this place was first built. Even when electric lighting first appeared, the high intensity theatre operating light was a long way in the future.
    Wow nice. I remember reading the same thing about operating theatres using a large window and mirrors, something that's evident in these theatres:
    Staffs
    R-Pap

    but i didn't know that applied to mortuaries. The more you know, I guess, the better.
    Don't worry about security until you've been caught.

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    Quote Originally Posted by khurbanx View Post
    My local never tried to get in here tbh .
    Would have been worthwhile. Unfortunately it may be too late.
    Don't worry about security until you've been caught.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HughieD View Post
    Small but perfectly formed.
    A quote which can be applied in many circumstances.

    Quote Originally Posted by HughieD View Post
    Good Stuff...
    Thanks!
    Don't worry about security until you've been caught.

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    Dictus Strictus is quite correct.

    I would only add that gas lighting in a mortuary was highly dangerous, not in and of itself, but decomposing bodies can emit some highly flammable gases. In mortuaries where gas lighting was provided around the walls, it was well shielded. Thanks for doing this shoot.
    Tread carefully, you walk on others’ dreams.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Silverlight View Post
    Dictus Strictus is quite correct.

    I would only add that gas lighting in a mortuary was highly dangerous, not in and of itself, but decomposing bodies can emit some highly flammable gases. In mortuaries where gas lighting was provided around the walls, it was well shielded. Thanks for doing this shoot.
    Thanks a lot. unfortunately you have now given me an image of mortuaries randomly exploding as they have gas lights, interesting information never the less.
    Don't worry about security until you've been caught.

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    Having had an occupation that over the years required me to recover bodies/body parts in various forms of decomposition; I think the myth of 'explosive' destruction of bodies during examination, should be put back in the box! One needed a very small, well sealed space full of very well decayed bodies for gas collection to happen. In the morgue situation that never happens/happened.

  18. Thanks given by: KPUrban_
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