SJ8598 : Former Ancoats Hospital, Mill Street
near to Manchester, Great Britain
The Ancoats Hospital and Ardwick and Ancoats Dispensary
The hospital began life in 1828 as the “Ardwick and Ancoats Dispensary” on Great Ancoats Street. In 1869, it moved to this building in Mill Street which was built to serve the influx of people who came to the Ancoats area during Manchester’s industrial hey-day (by the 1830s, around 32,000 people lived and worked in Ancoats; this population consisted principally of Irish labourers and textile workers Link ) . The specific purpose of dispensaries was to advise and treat poor people at their homes or as outpatients, relieving some of the burden on hospital facilities and minimising the possibility of epidemics that could arise if people with infectious diseases were admitted to hospitals as inpatients.
The Dispensary was the earliest building on what subsequently grew to become a much larger site. In 1875, Ancoats began a Provident Branch at the Hospital and the Dispensary later separated from the main hospital to be managed by the Provident Dispensary association and becoming a 50 bed hospital for in-patients. The hospital then became officially the “Ancoats Hospital and Ardwick and Ancoats Dispensary”, but it was usually referred to simply as the “Ancoats Hospital”. An interior scene of the building was painted in 1952 by L S Lowry in his work “Ancoats Hospital Outpatients' Hall” Link .
The Dispensary building has significance as the earliest and most architecturally notable building of the former hospital complex and largely comprises a red brick building with polychrome bands, and had steeply pitched hipped slate roofs, and is of an irregular plan, and of a gothic style. The Dispensary was listed `Grade II’ in 1974, with the listing updated in 1994 (English Heritage Building ID: 388313 Link ).
Since the closure of Ancoats Hospital in 1989, the majority of the hospital complex has been demolished and the Dispensary is now the only former hospital building remaining on the Ancoats site. It is derelict and the upstanding remains comprise principally of the exterior walls, which are supported by scaffolding.
Unfortunately, the developers were unable to find either a new use or a buyer for it and so planning consent was sought for its demolition (Link -application details). A report from the Manchester Evening News in January 2012 (Link ) indicated that The Greater Manchester Building Preservation Trust had agreed to buy the building from Urban Splash for just £1. However, the building is in a poor state of repair and the Trust needs to raise £3m to bring it up to modern standards. A planned grant from the North West Development Agency is no longer available as the agency has been wound down by the government. So the building is not yet safe from the bulldozers. The "Ancoats Dispensary Trust", was formed in 2012 Link with the aim of saving the building.
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- Grid Square
- SJ8598, 397 images (more nearby)
- David Dixon (find more nearby)
- Image classification?
- Date Taken
- Wednesday, 19 May, 2010 (more nearby)
- Thursday, 20 May, 2010
- Geographical Context
- Subject Location
OSGB36: SJ 854 984 [100m precision]
WGS84: 53:28.9404N 2:13.2405W
- Photographer Location
- OSGB36: SJ 855 983
- View Direction
- West-northwest (about 292 degrees)
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