Brindley Heath Hospital, Cannock Chase

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Description:This postcard view looks south from Rugeley Camp towards Brindley Heath Hospital which can be seen on the left amongst the trees. The Hospital was also known as Rugeley Hospital even though it served both Brocton and Rugeley Camps. The Hospital specialised in treating shell-shock victims and those who had been exposed to poisonous gas.

Some reports mentioned that each ward had sixty beds, while other reports mention fifty beds per ward. This would be a better match as newspaper reports state that it was a one thousand bed hospital. If demand was high they may have crammed a few extra beds into the three main sites of the Hospital including the Isolation Wards. The greatest demand was when the "Spanish" flu pandemic struck the Camp late 1918 and the Hospital was treating increasing numbers of victims, many of whom are buried in the nearby German and Commonwealth War Cemeteries. The complex continued to function as a hospital until 1924 when it was decommissioned.

This postcard was published by Evans’ The Printers, Hednesford. It was franked in Rugeley Camp on 21 November 1917 and in South Shields on 22 November 1917. It was sent to an address in South Shields.

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Image courtesy of: The Arthur Lloyd Collection

Donor ref:A_Lloyd-431aa (232/43212)

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