Hellingly Hospital - The East Sussex Mental Institution.

Hellingly Hospital - The East Sussex Mental Institution.
Hellingly, a Victorian hospital on a grand scale. Conceived in 1897, with landscaped surroundings high on a hill with therapeutic views across the countryside. An enclosed community, providing for itself...patients and staff lives exisiting in familiar corridors and buildings.
Closed down in the eary 1990's and left decaying ever since.

Friday, 18 February 2011

Part of something larger

I was a student nurse and staff nurse at Hellingly Hospital from 1977-1981 and for 2 years I lived in staff accomodation on the hospital site. Because of the village-like quality of the hospital it felt like being part of a very large family - with the different generations living side by side.
I note that there are references to 'institutionalised staff' however there were some very good, kind, dedicated and skilled staff at Hellingly. I still feel there is a lot to be said for the idea of an institution and the experience of being part of something larger was something both staff and patients shared.

I understand the philosophy of care in the community, though from my experience, once the idea that this huge building was 'an asylum' was overcome, I believe the environment was more therapeutic than any smaller inpatient psychiatric units I have since come across - these are far more disturbed and disturbing.

I have very fond memories of my time at Hellingly Hospital and am pleased to have come across this site - thankyou.
Debbie Smith

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