Daniel Wood, one of the owners of Howardtown Mills, had made it his intention to build a hospital for Glossop, after a period of illness; when he was surrounded by comfort and luxury and imagined how the poor people of Glossop felt when suffering from similar afflictions. He had planned for it to be built after his death and had mentioned it in his will.
He had a change of heart, and gifted £25,000 to Glossop Borough Council to build and run the hospital, as part of Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee celebrations, in 1887. He thought it was better that the hospital should be erected in his lifetime, in order that he might see it gradually rise before his eyes.
Wood’s hospital was designed by Mr James Murgatroyd and built to the “best possible quality and brought up to the greatest pitch of perfection, which recent sanitary authorities have laid down as essential” with raised floors to prevent damp or ‘miasmatic exhalations’.
The hospital was shaped like the letter ‘E’, with a short central line containing an administrative block with matron’s apartments, servants and nurses’ rooms, scullery, kitchen, dispensary, operating room and rooms for visiting surgeons. This block has been extended over the years. The two longer lines either side, housed the males and females wards, each with a fireplace and bathroom with lavatories.
The hospital opened in February 1889 and could accommodate 16 patients in comfortable surroundings. Sadly Daniel Wood passed away on 7th February 1888 and so never saw the completed hospital or the people it helped.
The picture above shows the fountain in Howard Park, which is now a flower bed, with the hospital standing behind it