Greenfields House, Westwood Way, Coventry, CV4 8JH
Tel 0845 130 7631 or
+44 (0)2476 694995
A District Association of The Camping and Caravanning Club
Whittingham and Goosnargh Sports and Social
Guild Park, Whittingham, Preston. PR3 2JH.
Map Ref: 102/565361
Latitude: 53.822086 Longitude: -2.667880
The social club is part the old Whittingham Asylum Hospital, for information on the origins of the hospital click here, Social club comprises an excellent function room with bar/stage a games room with bar at reasonable prices, pool table, two snooker tables and a TV room, clubs website.
Locally there are a number of pubs within walking distance serving food, further afield places to visit are Preston, Longridge, Clitheroe and the Trough of Bowland
Whittingham . . . the darker side The Whittingham and Goosnargh Sports and Social Club, venue for our AGM is what remains of a Victorian Mental Asylum. Read on . . . Whittingham Hospital (known as the Fourth County Lunatic Asylum) was built from 1869 and opened on April 1st, 1893 in response to needs of an additional psychiatric hospital in Lancashire. The facility was able to house just over 2,000 patients, but grew with three major additions to the original hospital complex. Included on site was an infectious diseases sanatorium, train station, hospital, brass band and orchestra, theatre, church, and post office. In the early 1920s, the facility was renamed “Whittingham Mental Hospital”, and after the outbreak of World War II the military used part of the hospital to treat both military and civilian casualties until 1946. Shortly after, the staff at Whittingham produced the first EEG machine from war surplus material. The patient population rose to over 3,500, making Whittingham Mental Hospital the largest in the country. In 1965, the hospital magazine Contact published two articles touching upon shortcomings in student training on the wards, which were followed by letters from student nurses complaining about conditions for patients that were ignored by the Hospital Management Committee. In 1967, a book called Sans Everything was published, describing conditions within long term care facilities, which stirred the student nurses once again. A meeting was held and the students voiced opinions of mistreatment and fraud. The Head Male Nurse quickly squelched the fire by threatening the students with actions for libel and slander against their complaints, and nothing was brought up until March of 1968... A new psychologist had toured the wards, and did not like what he saw at all, and published his opinions in several articles. The student nurses now felt they had a voice on the outside to help, but another meeting was called and they were told to “put up or shut up” by the Head Male Nurse. The Hospital Management Committee heard about this meeting and the previous one in 1967 and reprimands were issued to the Head Male Nurse and Matron, both of whom decided to retire. An investigation was conducted and complaints of mistreatment were reported, with the worst being of women. Complaints such as patients being locked in small rooms under staircases, in washrooms, and outside in the airing courts regardless of weather. Others include patients being dragged by their hair, a “wet towel treatment” where a damp towel would be wrapped around the patient’s neck to induce unconsciousness, nurses setting fire to a patients clothing while worn, beatings and vermin infestations. During the 1968-69 fiscal year, as much as £49,000 had been unaccounted for as well. The allegations were denied, but staff members were discharged and peace was restored. New movements in psychiatric treatment led to the popularity of de-institutionalization; small psych wings were added to general hospitals rather than keeping patients in these large, ancient asylums. Once the new treatment centre opened in Preston, the Whittingham Hospital shut down in 1995.