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Report - North Wales Hospital Denbigh Asylum - June 09


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Denbigh Asylum - June 09

Visted with Randomnut, Catscratch and Jim

We had Denbigh planned for our day 2 of of Wales trip. We left Carmarthen in south Wales 9am and imbarked in what felt like the longest drive ever winding 130miles through Wales. However what a beautifull drive it was going through the mountains. After about 3 hours we finally saw Denbigh on the hill and was so glad it was in sight. At this point i was buzzing off 2 cans of V energy drinks and 1.5lts of Lucozade Orange and lots of Haribo i was ready to get going.

As we set in we came arcoss 2 other explorers who didnt say alot looked more dodgy than anything but we carried on in and straight away realised how nasty the floors were in this place and then bumped into another 2 explorers who warned us that the Old man and Dog were lurking. So we continued with caution 1. because of the floors and 2. the old man and and his big dog.

We spent around 4 hours or so walking around and was left feeling abit disapointed and maybe we had left it too late to visit Denbigh. Externally its stunning but inside trashed, stripped and very dangerous. Only wish i had the chance to see it before the downfall that was Most Haunted Live.


Being the first lunatic asylum in Wales, the North Wales Hospital (Denbigh Asylum) was built between 1844 and its opening in 1848. The need for the asylum had been of pressing importance, as with no formal mental facilities in Wales there was a severe lacking in sufficient care for mental patients of welsh origin and more importantly, welsh only speakers. The location of the site was decided by the donation of some 20 acres by an anonymous benefactor, who later was revealed to be Joseph Ablett, and further donations from royals and others helped to fund the project throughout the building phase.

Initially the hospital could only house 200 patients, though through pressure of over crowding and numerous expansions the final capacity was 1,500 all of whom would be supported by 1,000 staff, many of whom were from the nearby Denbigh itself.

Denbigh has the unfortunate fame of being one of the main hospitals visited by Enoch Powell in 1960 prior to his notorious Water Tower speech the following year, which marked the beginning of the end for the asylum as mental health moved away from lunatic asylums and more towards care in the community.

Due to the size and population of the hospital a 10 year plan was put in place in 1987 for the closure, and various parts of the hospital were closed in stages up until 2002, though the main building was closed in 1995.

The buildings are Grade II listed and were further placed under the protection of the Phoenix Trust by Prince Charles in 2004 to prevent their demolition. Although there are plans to convert the site into housing, parts of this development have been brought into question after suspicious fires were started in the great ballroom of the asylum in November 2008.

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