Springfield Hospital, Crumpsall

  • Reference
      GB 133 MMC/9/40
  • Former Reference
      GB 133 J b 36
  • Dates of Creation
  • Physical Description
      5 items

Scope and Content

The collection comprises four newspaper cuttings relating to the Hospital's work in the 1960s, and a copy of Mark Greenwood's history of the Hospital.

Administrative / Biographical History

Springfield Hospital was originally a workhouse, but was gradually transformed into a psychiatric hospital. The old Manchester Workhouse had been founded in Bridge Street in 1792. The new Manchester Workhouse opened in Crumpsall in 1858. The Workhouse building, called Park House, later became Springfield Hospital. The Workhouse catered for paupers, including those who were able to work, as well as orphans, the elderly and 'lunatics'. By 1860, there were 116 inmates of unsound mind. In 1876, Crumpsall Infirmary was built next to the Workhouse, and the Workhouse gradually ceased to cater for able-bodied paupers. At the turn of century, Manchester Board of Guardians began specialist provision for epileptics, orphans and 'feeble minded children', leaving 'the elderly and adult inmates of unsound mind in the workhouse'. Crumpsall Institute passed many patients on to County Mental Hospitals, but provided institutional care for patients with a wide variety of psychiatric problems.

After the reorganisation of poor law unions in Manchester in 1915, Manchester Workhouse changed its name to the less stigmatised Crumpsall Institute, and in 1930 the Institute ceased to be a workhouse and instead provided care for psychiatric patients. With control being taken by Manchester Corporation, the Infirmary and Institute became separately managed institutions. In 1939 the name of the Institute was changed to Park House, due to the stigma attached to the word 'Institute'. With the advent of the NHS, the hospital changed its name yet again, this time to Springfield Hospital, and it joined up with Swinton. By this time there were 883 patients, though this figure would decrease rapidly. The 1940s saw the first psychiatric social worker at Springfield and the first medical superintendent started work in 1950s. There were significant improvements in the 1960s, partly due to Mental Health Act of 1959. The Hospital began to offer treatment rather than incarceration. In 1972, Springfield Hospital was integrated with Delaunays Hospital and Crumpsall Infirmary and became the Psychiatric Department of the North Manchester General Hospital. The department closed in 1995 and the original building was demolished to be replaced with a new Mental Health Unit, aptly named Park House.



Mark Greenwood, Springfield Hospital: The human history, 1855-1995, 1998.