Duchess of York Hospital

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 133 MMC/9/17
  • Former Reference
      GB 133 J b 13
  • Dates of Creation
  • Physical Description
      5 series, 41 items

Scope and Content

Note: the Medical Collection does not include any official records of this hospital. This includes any records relating to patient admissions, treatment and discharge.. Some Hospital records are held by Manchester Archives and Local Studies, Central Library, St. Peter's Square, Manchester.

The collection comprises:

  • /1 Annual reports
  • /2 Medical Registrar's reports
  • /3 Medical services
  • /4 Fund-raising
  • /5 Other documents

Administrative / Biographical History

The Duchess of York Hospital was founded in 1914 as the Manchester Babies' Hospital. The Hospital was the result of the efforts of a group of women doctors and philanthropists to address the lack of treatment for small infants and the lack of opportunities for women doctors. The hospital was originally located in Clarendon Road, Chorlton on Medlock and had twelve beds. It accepted for babies under 12 months, and specialised in nutrition disorders and the training of girls in child care for infants. In the summer of 1915, the hospital moved to a house on Slade Lane which brought the number of beds up to thirty, ten of which were allotted for cases of rickets up to 2 years old. In 1919, the hospital moved to Cringle Hall in Burnage. There were fifty beds, thirty were maintained by Manchester Corporation and the rest by voluntary contributions. A new building was erected on pavilion principles, with glass wards for helio-therapeutic treatment of rickets. The hospital was affiliated to Ancoats Hospital for the training of nurses, and was recognised by the GNC as a preliminary training school.

Dr Chisholm was founder of the hospital and was a driving force there until her retirement in 1947. By the time of her death in 1952, there were over a thousand admissions a year to the hospital. After a visit in 1935 by HRH the Duchess of York (later Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother), the name of the hospital was changed to the Duchess of York Hospital for Babies. During the war, Chisholm evacuated the hospital to Calderstones. In the 1980s the Cringle Hall site was closed, and a new unit with sixty beds for children was attached to the Withington Hospital. In the 1980s, the unit was called the Duchess of York Hospital, and its name from 1988 was the Duchess of York's Children's Hospital. Along with the other Manchester children's hospitals and St Mary's, the Duchess of York Hospital had great influence on paediatrics nationally and internationally. The hospital closed in 1993.


Pamela Barnes, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital "Pendlebury" 1928-1999, Churnett Valley Books 1999.

Peter Dean Mohr, 'Women-run hospitals in Britain: a historical survey focusing on Dr. Catherine Chisholm (1878-1952) and The Manchester Babies Hospital (Duchess of York Hospital)', Ph.D. Thesis, University of Manchester, 1995.