A monument preserving the memory and heritage of Haydock Cottage Hospital will be dedicated later this month at it’s Clipsley Lane site.
The Mayor of St Helens Cllr Joe Pearson will dedicate the monument and Haydock Brass Band will be playing alongside local folk singer Martin Williams. Haydock Brass Band played at the laying of the foundation stone of the Cottage Hospital in 1886.
The memorial has been created from the ornate arch stones which were located over the entrance to the building. The stones were donated to the people of Haydock by the present owner of the site, local resident Mr Issam Jabrow, with the express wish that they be preserved in Haydock. At the same time Mr Jabrow donated a Time Capsule, which was featured on Antiques Roadshow. The Time Capsule will be displayed in Haydock Library.
Cllr Martin Bond who has secured the artefacts, commented “Haydock Cottage Hospital was founded in the aftermath of the Haydock Wood Pit disaster in 1878 when over 180 men and boys when killed. The mine owners built the Hospital, but it was the subscriptions of the colliers and pit brow lasses (who earned half the wages of the men) that paid for medical treatment 60 years before Nye Bevan created the NHS. These subscriptions were paid in addition to their union subs.
When the Time Capsule was opened, 2 of the contemporary newspapers in the capsule reported that Haydock Brass Band had played at the Foundation Ceremony. It is therefore only fitting that they will take pride of place as we dedicate the monument, now that building has been demolished. Preserving our heritage to ensure that the sacrifices of those who built our town and society is vitally important. If we can’t always retain the physical reminders, then passing on the stories and memories to following generations becomes even more important.”
The dedication ceremony will take place at 11am on Saturday 18th November 2017.
More about Haydock Cottage Hospital
Haydock Cottage Hospital was built in 1886. The land was donated by Lord Newton along with a piece of land to be used for the recreation of the patients. The colliers of Haydock, raised the princely sum of £290 by a halfpenny a week from their wages. In consideration the committee decided that the miners of Haydock, Parr and Pewfall could be treated free of charge and given free treatment for accidents.
Official records state that heroine nurse, Florence Nightingale, requested copies of the hospital plan, and in a letter dated June 10, 1885, she made observations on every detail and also suggestions for improvements to the hospital, which got her overall approval.
Following several local colliery closures – coupled with new safety measures imposed on colliery owners by the Coal Mines Act which meant less accidents, resulting in less patients – the hospital was eventually opened up to all citizens from Haydock and surrounding areas in 1930, until it’s closure in 1975.