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Peterborough District War Memorial Hospital

Hob Uid: 1057287
Location :
City of Peterborough
Non Civil Parish
Grid Ref : TL1837698731
Summary : PETERBOROUGH MEMORIAL HOSPITAL was built 1925-1928, to designs by Wallace Marchment (1880-1940). It was designed as a pavilion plan hospital with an out-patients wing, a significant element of which was the administration block between the two. The two-storey administration block was linked to three pavilion wings to the south; at the end of each was a loggia with a balcony above. The hospital was built of red brick with rusticated brick quoins, with a stone porch and hipped pantiled roofs to the administration block and pavilions. The entrance lobby to the administration block contains a plaque that states that the hospital was erected as a war memorial, and records the names of substantial donors to the hospital project. The hospital is now the Memorial Wing of the District Hospital.The hospital was assessed for listing in 2010 but did not meet the required criteria.
More information : HISTORY
In 1919 an appeal was launched in Peterborough to raise funds to build a hospital as a war memorial and to replace the infirmary on Priestgate (now Peterborough Museum and Art Gallery). Although the house and grounds of Thorpe Lawn, to the east of the Old Gaol, was acquired in the same year, and an architect, Wallace Marchment (1880-1940), appointed in 1920, work on the hospital did not begin until 1925. The hospital was finally opened on 14th June 1928. It consisted of a two-storey administration block linked to three pavilion wings to the south; at the end of each was a loggia with balcony above. The entrance lobby to the administration block contains a plaque that states that the hospital was erected as a war memorial, and records the names of substantial donors to the hospital project. 1047 names of those who died in the First World War are recorded on a roll of honour contained in a box originally held in the administration block but more recently in the chapel of Peterborough District Hospital. To the north of the administration block there was a single-storey out-patients wing, and to the north of the pavilion corridor a kitchen block with paying patients' wards above; at the west end of the corridor was a single-storey operating theatre. A nurses' home to the north was connected by a corridor to the kitchen block. Later alterations and additions to the building include the addition of a second storey to the out-patients wing, including a small wing with a hipped roof. This may have been built in the 1930s; the ground floor has been partially rebuilt and aluminium framed windows inserted.
Further alterations followed the building of Peterborough District Hospital in 1968 to the west of the Memorial Hospital, now renamed the Memorial Wing. Substantial additions include a two-storey, flat-roofed extension to the south end of the central pavilion, concealing the loggia and balcony, and a single-storey wing connecting this to the west pavilion, now fronted by an open porch or canopy; the openings to the two outer loggias and balconies have been fully glazed. The ground floor of the block that connects the east pavilion to the administration block has been partially concealed behind a single-storey entrance with wheelchair ramp. The former kitchen block and operating theatre were demolished in this period, and this area, between the north wing and the pavilions, has been filled with single-storey, flat-roofed extensions.
The Memorial Hospital is built of red brick with rusticated brick quoins, with a stone porch and hipped pantiled roofs to the administration block and pavilions. The administration block is of five bays and two-storeys, with tall chimney stacks to either end of the roof, as well as centrally placed on the ridge. Below the eaves is a deep cornice. The porch has a plain frieze and moulded cornice supported on paired Doric columns; an inscription above the doors to the entrance lobby reads IN REMEMBRANCE 1914-1918. The four ground-floor windows are tall, eighteen pane sashes; the five first-floor windows have twelve panes. The central window above the porch is flanked by small round-arched niches. The administration block is connected to the east pavilion by a flat roofed section. This pavilion is of six and a half bays, with tall narrow windows. The flat roofed section at the end of this, and the west pavilion, originally contained a loggia to the ground floor with wide round-arched openings and a balcony above, but all openings are now fully glazed, with doors to the central opening. The west pavilion has a flat modern canopy in front of this entrance. The end of the central pavilion is concealed behind a modern two-storey, flat-roofed extension which is connected to the west pavilion by a modern single-storey range. The north wing, originally the outpatients block, is of two-storeys fronted by a single-storey; at the north end a short wing with hipped pantiled roof projects east, and to the north of this is a modern flat-roofed single-storey block.
The entrance lobby contains a large plaque listing the names of major donors to the Memorial Hospital fund. Other plaques are to be found elsewhere; the stone plaque commemorating the opening of the hospital on June 14th 1928 by Field Marshall Sir William Robertson is on the wall of a small storage room, while the commemorative foundation stone, laid by G C W Fitzwilliam, laid on July 25th 1925, is on the wall of a corridor. Two other bronze plaques celebrate the funding and opening of the operating theatre, also in 1928.
The plan of the hospital consists of a series of corridors connecting treatment and consulting rooms, offices and wards; doors are modern and few original features remain. There are wards to the south of the corridor that connects the pavilions, but the pavilion wards have been subdivided. The main staircase rises from an open central space to a first floor landing, with corridors off.
The Peterborough Memorial Hospital now forms the Memorial Wing of Peterborough District Hospital. A new hospital is in the process of construction on the site of the Edith Cavell hospital to the north-west of the city centre; all services currently provided by the District Hospital will be moved there and the site redeveloped. The Memorial Hospital is listed as a Building of Local Importance.
War memorials attract considerable public interest, and will always warrant serious consideration for designation; unless a war memorial is of little design interest, or has been compromised by alteration, there is a presumption in favour of listing. However, the main exception to this overall presumption to designate concerns utilitarian or functional memorials, that is, structures or buildings that primarily serve another purpose. The Commemorative Structures Selection Guide (English Heritage March 2007) states that communities sometimes opted for practical living memorials, such as extensions to hospitals; although these may incorporate inscription plaques they are first and foremost buildings of a particular type, and need to be judged for listing against the relevant standards (pp 8-9).
There have been cases where a war memorial designed as part of a hospital memorial wing has been designated as a distinct commemorative structure, for example the portico at the Cottage Hospital, Market Harborough, Leicestershire, and Islington War Memorial, an archway originally part of the memorial wing to the Royal Northern Hospital (both Grade II). In these cases the list of names of those who served (in the case of Market Harborough) or those who died are inscribed into the fabric, and they clearly form the memorial element of their parent buildings. In contrast, Peterborough Memorial Hospital was an entirely new building, designed as an integral whole to replace the existing infirmary in Priestgate. The plaque in the entrance lobby makes it clear that the whole of the hospital building, funded by public subscription, was intended as a war memorial. This plaque lists substantial donors to the building fund, and no individual part of the building is specifically dedicated to those from Peterborough and the surrounding district who died in the Great War. Their names (a considerable number) are recorded on a role of honour preserved and stored in a box which is no longer held in the building. In contrast to the fine neo-Georgian Memorial Hall of Darlington Memorial Hospital, Durham, (Grade II) where the central double height hall contains ashlar wall panels listing the war dead, the administration block at Peterborough is physically and functionally an integral part of the whole hospital. The size of the hospital, whether considered as comparable to cottage hospitals or other memorial hospitals, is not of relevance to the consideration of its special interest.
The appropriate criteria for the assessment of hospitals for designation is contained in the Health and Welfare Buildings Selection Guide (English Heritage March 2007), which states that because of the vast increase in the number of hospitals built after 1920 a greater degree of selection is required than for hospitals built before that date; the main considerations will be architectural interest, planning and intactness. Peterborough Memorial Hospital was designed as a pavilion plan hospital with an out-patients wing, a significant element of which was the administration block between the two. Pavilion plans had first been used in the design of hospitals in England in the mid-19th Century, and were a response to the belief that disease was caused by foul air and miasmas which could be countered by light and fresh air introduced by cross ventilation. By the 1920s the role of bacteria as a cause of disease was beginning to be recognised, and the pavilion plan was no longer innovative scientifically or architecturally. The choice of the neo-Georgian style for the design of the Memorial Hospital is also not innovative, but was the preferred style for municipal hospitals of this date and is routine for the period. In order to be of special architectural interest the Selection Guide states that candidates for designation should have architectural coherence and be little altered (p 5). The design of Peterborough Memorial Hospital is routine and has been compromised by mainly late-20th Century alteration and addition; in particular, the appearance of one of its main design features, the loggia and balcony to the end of each pavilion, has been considerably altered by infill and glazing, and by the addition of an extension to the central pavilion. The administration block remains the most coherent element of the building, but even considered as a discrete unit its design is unbalanced and demonstrates little attention to detail or care in the use of materials. This is in contrast to the Grade II listed administration block at St Luke's Hospital, Muswell Hill, London, comparable in both date and style, the interior of which also displays good quality design and craftsmanship and has a particularly fine boardroom. This is also a free-standing building, linked to other hospital buildings only by open walkways.
The plan and finish of the interior of the administration block at Peterborough, and of the hospital as a whole, has also been considerably altered and modernised, and contains few original details apart from the plaques commemorating its foundation and its opening, the latter now concealed inside a small storage room. The building is therefore not of special interest in the national context, and does not meet the criteria for listing, but does remain of considerable local interest, both as a war memorial and as an early 20th Century pavilion plan hospital built with money raised by public subscription, a project representing community and civic commitment.
Peterborough Memorial Hospital is not of special interest in the national context, and does not meet the criteria for listing.
Richardson, Harriet, English hospitals 1660-1948: a survey of their architecture and design, Royal Commission on Historic Monuments(1998) (1)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source :
Source details : Heritage Protection Adviser 02-AUG-2010
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : 20th Century
Display Date : Construction
Monument End Date : 1928
Monument Start Date : 1925
Monument Type : General Hospital, War Memorial, Office, Outpatients Department, Pavilion Ward Block
Evidence :

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : No List Case
External Cross Reference Number : 168993/507523
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : NBR Index Number
External Cross Reference Number : 100263
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TL 19 NE 159
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Related Activities :
Associated Activities :
Start Date : 1991-01-01
End Date : 1995-12-31