Report - North Wales Hospital - Denbigh - December 2013

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28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Nov 11, 2013

Shamelessly borrowed from Session9 ;)

The North Wales Lunatic Asylum was the first psychiatric institution built in Wales; construction began in 1844 and completed in 1848 in the town of Denbigh. The U-shaped Tudorbethain style hospital was built due to the spreading word of mistreatment of Welsh people in English asylums; The North Wales Hospital would be a haven for welsh speaking residents to seek treatment without prejudice or a language barrier.

Renovations and extensions were made at the hospital from 1867 until 1956, when the hospital reached its maximum capacity at 1,500 patients living inside her walls and 1,000 staff at hand. Physical treatments such as Cardiazol, malarial treatment, insulin shock treatment, and sulphur based drugs were used and developed in the 1920s and 1930s, and 1941-1942 saw the advent of electro convulsive therapy (ECT) and prefrontal leucotomy (lobotomy) treatments.

In 1960, Enoch Powell visited the North Wales Hospital, and later announced the "Hospital Plan" for England and Wales, which proposed that psychiatric care facilities be attached to general hospitals and favored community care over institutional settings. This was the beginning of the end for the North Wales Hospital and others like it; in 1987 a ten year strategy to close the hospital was formed. The North Wales Hospital was closed in sections from 1991 to 2002; most notable was the closure of the main hospital building in 1995.

On July 12, 2004, The Prince of Wales visited the hospital and administered a speech detailing his Phoenix Trust, a historic building trust that prevented the structure from being demolished. Planning permission was granted to convert the buildings into flats (which has now lapsed) and apart from some work to the roof of the main building in 2012 and some asbestos removal, the site remains in a sorry state. The council is now pursuing a compulsory purchase of the hospital.

The Explore

Not being local and with my housemate moving away we thought we might as well do "One Big Explore" and with the days pretty much as short as they get we picked Denbigh. Setting off at a time of the morning that shouldn't exist we arrived in the town of Denbigh early in the morning. After fuelling up on Coffee and Suger we made our trek to the hospital unhindered by sheep, bearded goons or Alsations. All in all the day was relativly unhindered with only the wind as company.

1) The Main Drive

2) The Admin Building

3) The Old Revolving Doors

4) Collapse Everywhere

5) One of the Old Wards

6) Watch your Step

7) Many of the Corridors now have Collapsing Roofs in them

8) Nature is Starting to Take Over the Lower Floors accelerating the Rot

9) Life Rises from the Ashes

10) The rot is slowly setting in

11) Shower Anyone?

12) I don't think these scales have worked for years

13) Plant Room Entance

14) The Boiler Room

15) Control Station

16) Plenty of Gas in that cupboard!

17) Foremans Kitchen

18) Watch your Step!

19) The Site from the Back

20) Fire Exit to Nowhere

21) Another Nasty Drop

22) Another of the Old Wards

23) Tea Anyone?

24) Ward Report

25) A Flooded Upstairs Room

26) The Lift Machinery Room

27) Let's hope these aren't the Emergency Breaks!

28) The (Now Gutted) Admin Block shame theirs no floors now

29) The Towers (Sadly Unclimbed this Visit)

30) The Courtyard

Thanks For Looking :) Full Set is in the links

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