Thursday, 23 May 2013

The Extensions

The extensions were additions built sometime in the 1950/60's to Blewbury, Basildon, Compton and Caversham Wards, you can see how the hospital looked in this  old photo of Fairmile taken from the air it shows the layout  probably unchanged from when it was built in the 1800's
The more recent photo below shows how ugly the place had become and the extensions can be clearly seen either side of the hall.
Viewing the rear of the building during the 1980's you would have seen this which is Basildon and Caversham Wards 

Both my Mother and Aunt were ward sisters on these wards.

Inside the wards would have looked similar to Ilsley ward in the photo here. 

 The same wards looked like this in 2008 when I walked round the site.  


   This is Blewbury and Compton wards in 2010 during the snow.

This is Basildon and Caversham wards in 2010 when I first went on site.

and Blewbury and Compton wards which were looking very dilapidated

This is what Basildon ward looked like in 2010.

It even had the bath still there.

Caversham ward was no different with bathrooms and wards still intact apart from no beds

This may well have been its day room

When I got to Blewbury and Compton wards they were little different

Though at least the corridors were brighter

The wards had curtains

Though all the fittings were gone

The treatment rooms had cupboards and sinks in.

And the armoured glass was still there to observe the ward form the nursing station.

But it was not long before the wards were demolished.

The 360 excavators making short work of them

A few months later and it was just a memory

I missed the demolition of Blewbury and Compton wards because one day I too this photo then realised something was missing I'd forgotten all about asking when it was going to be demolished.

But that is where it used to be

But was certainly gone leaving a big hole in the building.

Presently the building looks like this and in about six months or less will be finished.

This is where Basildon and Caversham wards used to be. The turf has just been laid and the properties will be soon ready for viewing. The place now has started looking like it was in the old photo.

Now it looks a much more pleasent place to be
As for the old extension you would hardly now where it was.


  1. I always feel sad when I see buildings being demolished. I think about the people who were once there and the history that is lost...

    1. In most cases I would agree with you but these two buildings were an afterthought built with no sympathy to the rest of the building. I only remember going in them a few times when I was a kid and even then you got no feeling of history to them.

  2. This is such a fascinating pictorial tutorial. I've scrolled up and down several times. It's amazing. Thanks for sharing this, Bill.

    1. Thanks, I have tried to impart some of the history as it has been part of my life even though I never worked there. Have a read of some of the others.

  3. What an incredible walk down memory lane. An old mental health facility in my community was recently renovated and turned into a college campus. I am glad because losing buildings of such majestic quality (at least on the exterior) is quite sad.

    (I can see why people call you a Historian)

    Brandy's Bustlings

    1. Don't know abut the historian but it has been a passion of mine for the last few years.

  4. Replies
    1. Thanks you just reminded me I have to add a more upto date photo I took last week. Glad you enjoyed the lesson.