28 May 2019

28th May 1940 - Queen Visits Botley’s War Hospital

The Queen paid a visit to Botley’s War Hospital. Chertsey, on Tuesday 28th May 1940. This was not only to visit solders evacuated from Dunkirk, but also to see some of the learning disabled. A Report in the Surrey Advertiser says The Queen was taken on a tour of the various departments by the medical supt. and acting matron, and she was everywhere impressed by the size and work carried on. She had an opportunity of seeing and discussing nursing and administrative problems. A visit was also made to seven of the newly-constructed huts erected by the Ministry of Health and only recently occupied by service casualties. Her Majesty spoke to a number of the soldiers. After taking tea in the administrative block, she inspected the children’s villa and officers’ ward, leaving the institution at about 6 o’clock. Botley's is now chiefly an emergency medical service hospital of the Ministry of Health, but it is still managed by Surrey County Council. There is accommodation for both military and civil casualties.

A colony of villas had been built and started to be used from 1938 for the care, treatment and remedial training of learning disabled children and adults. These became much more cramped during the war years as the military hosipital alongside took over and built new villas and took over existing ones..  http://www.ashfordstpeters.nhs.uk/the-war-hospital has more details as does https://ezitis.myzen.co.uk/botleyspark.html.

Thankyou to The British Newspaper Archive for the date. All Rights Reserved

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