Hebburn, South Tyneside
Hebburn Fever Hospital
31 Oct 2023
Hebburn, South Tyneside
This is a
Hospital Drive, Hebburn
Current status is
Designer (if known):
The site is now shared housing named Alexandra Lodge.
A little frustrating since I could only capture the back of the building, but this brick structure was Hebburn’s own infectious diseases hospital.
It opened in 1899, two years after a small wood and slate hut was erected to provide beds for 4 scarlet fever and typhoid patients. It’s a fairly modest building even still, but fast expanded to incorporate separate wards for typhoid and scarlet fever, as well as a separate small pox hospital next door. The furnishings were provided by the famous Bainbridge’s, and the rooms especially airy for comfort.
Also a very curious decision to stick it next to the towns cemetery. A report in the Jarrow Express of 1898 makes note of this. They reference the “convenient disposal” to those who haven’t taken kindly to the diseases, while patients may be morbidly inclined to “pass their time in contemplation of that place of tombs and suitable meditation upon their latter end”. Mind, the secretary felt it would have a negligible effect, given you could only see it if you stretched your neck to “dislocation point”.
"Hebburn Fever Hospital (for infectious diseases – also known as Hebburn Isolation Hospital) was constructed to the south of the conservation area, immediately adjacent to Hebburn Cemetery by 1897. This was a temporary hutment with accommodation for 4 patients that was replaced in 1899 by a new hospital building. An additional TB sanatorium building was added in 1901.40 Hebburn Fever Hospital had expanded by 1916-17 and a Smallpox Hospital had been constructed to the south of the Fever Hospital.
By 1941-42, the dedicated Smallpox Hospital had been demolished and this land and that to the west of Hebburn Fever Hospital had been developed into predominantly semi-detached housing.
It was not until April 1950 that the hospital ceased to treat all infectious diseases and functioned solely as a TB sanatorium for women until March 1956 when the hospital closed. It reopened in October 1956 as Hebburn Hospital for the care of the chronic and longterm sick. Since then, its role gradually changed to that of an elderly care unit and the hospital closed in December 1996.41 The building currently has the name ‘Alexandra Lodge’ and is advertised as the Public Health Development Centre." - South Tyneside Council
Listing Description (if available)
Both editions above illustrate the Fever Hospital, adjacent to the cemetary and close to the grounds of Hebburn Hall.
The site was close to the main thoroughfare between Heworth and Jarrow, what is partly known as Shields Road nowadays. A number of fever hospitals were dotted around Tyneside by the time of construction for this site This is perhaps due to the rising squalor and poverty on Tyneside with the growing population and working class areas.
The 1967 view shows a great population shift, with the hospital surrounded by sprawl and suburbia. The site was linked by a small cul-de-sac in the middle of a housing estate. By this point the site was used to care for the long term sick rather than for infectious diseases due to its sharp decline by this point.
The rear of the Fever Hospital in 2023
Image of the hospital and its grounds, undated. The complex seems austere in nature, serving the long term sick at this point. It was later turned into an elderly care facility.
Retrieved from South Tyneside Council