Yorkhill is a mainly residential area on the north bank of the Clyde, but say its name to most Glaswegians and the instant association is “Sick Kids”. The Royal Hospital for Sick Children, usually just known as “Yorkhill” treats thousands of patients each year – approximately 90,000 out-patients, 15,000 in-patients, 7,300 day-cases and 35,000 Accident and Emergency cases.
This wasn’t the hospital’s original home, however. After 20 years of arguing about a suitable site, the first children’s hospital in Glasgow was founded (by charitable donations) in Garnethill in 1882. It quickly became too small, and today is an annexe to a local school: that’s it below with a close-up of the relief over the door showing Charity comforting a child.
In 1914, a public appeal raised £140,000 for the new site at Yorkhill – approximately £7m in today’s money. The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow recently held a symposium to celebrate a century of paediatric care at Yorkhill – the College Library blogpost about it has some lovely images, including one of dolls wearing the 1964 uniform of the Queen Mother’s Hospital (the maternity hospital on the same site).
Now the hospital is on the move again. The redeveloped Southern General campus in Govan, on the other side of the river, is almost complete and will serve both adults and children from later this year. This time, of course, it’s funded by the National Health Service (although the admirable Yorkhill Children’s Charity raises money for additional resources). Let’s be grateful that we no longer have to rely on charity for our healthcare.
I can’t believe it’s the last letter tomorrow! Let’s go to the movies for Z.