Conisbrough & Denaby Main
Heritage Group

Hospitals  in Conisbrough

The Conisbrough Urban District Council elected to build two isolation hospitals in the town in 1900.  One was built at the top of Drakehead Lane for treatment of Smallpox and the other on Common Lane (Crookhill Road) for other infectious diseases as reported in local newspapers.  Where the original fever hospital, that was made of corrugated iron buildings, were situated is unknown.

​No photographic evidence of the Smallpox Hospital has been found so far.

9th August 1899
Mr Chadwick said that the Joint Hospital Committee proposed to re-erect the corrugated iron building on the new site at Conisbrough.  It was agreed to purchase three acres of land at Conisbrough at £100 per acre as a site for a hospital for the treatment of smallpox cases. 
29th March 1900
Doncaster Urban Council and Mexborough  Council to borrow £387.10s and £1000 for sites for hospitals for persons suffering from Smallpox and Infectious Diseases, belonging to the joint district.  Both sites are situated in Conisbrough the first containing about three acres where it is proposed to have the Smallpox Hospital, near the Doncaster Road and the other seven and one quarter acres  where it is proposed to put the hospital for Infectious Diseases, near the Common Road.  Both situations were considered favourable as to levels of isolation, there being only one house within a quarter of a mile of the smaller site and twenty four within a quarter of a mile of the larger.  The conditions for drainage were favourable and before the scheme was carried out Conisbrough would have secured a good water supply.

It was mentioned, as to the Smallpox Hospital, that a well should be sunk if that was not done there was another source.  

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9th February 1903
Only one case of smallpox was reported in the Mexborough District this week which makes three from the town under treatment in the Conisbrough Smallpox Hospital.

19th March 1903
A case of smallpox has been notified at Conisbrough the victim being a man working on the sewage farm and only recently arrived from Rotherham.

13th December 1906
Cook, good and plain and Laundress required.  Wages £18 and uniform.  Ward Maid - £15 and uniform.  Apply Matron, Isolation Hospital, Conisbrough.
16th July 1909
Yesterday, Dr McClure, the Medical Superintendant, reported that on 1st June there were in the hospital 22 cases, 19 of Scarlet Fever and 3 of Diphtheria.  Nine cases have been admitted during the month, five of Scarlet Fever, three of Typhoid and one of Diphtheria.  Seventeen cases had been discharged and ten remained at the end of the month.  Two deaths both of Typhoid Fever had taken place.
16th June 1938
Doncaster and Mexborough Hospital Board meeting at Conisbrough yesterday approved amendments suggested by the Board's engineer following recommendations by the Ministry of Health involving a saving of £3300 in their original £74,000 scheme for extensions and alterations to the Conisbrough Isolation Hospital
22nd September 1939
Doncaster and Mexborough joint Hospital Board, at Conisbrough yesterday decided to meet specially to discuss their proposed  £66,000 alterations and additions to Conisbrough Isolation Hospital.

21st December 1939
Sixty three cases of Diptheria have been admitted to the Conisbrough Isolation Hospital.  Three cases have proved fatal and one patient died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital.  Twenty three of the patients are from Armthorpe.  Dr Cranfield said there was nothing alarming but parents would be well advised not to delay in fetching a doctor when a child was suffering from a sore throat or a cold.  Dr Maclure said that an adult teacher was one of the patients admitted from Armthorpe.
He added that of the 63 admitted only three were evacuees there was no evidence that they had brought diphtheria to the district.   Mr G Oldfield spoke of the good results in Conisbrough from immunisation.  Dr Maclure said that in America and Canada where immunisation is compulsory they have just about killed Diptheria.

13TH October 1890
At the fortnightly meeting of the Doncaster Board of Guardians on Saturday, the question came forward of appointing a successor to Dr Hills as vaccination officer for the Conisbrough District.  There were three applicants:  Messrs Twigg, McCall and English the latter residing at Mexbro’.  The inhabitants of Denaby now number upwards of 2600, were in favour of Dr Twigg.  It is known that Dr Hills was asked to leave the position and Dr McCall is the assistant to Dr Hills, surely the same habits would continue.  The voting resulted in the selection of Dr McCall.
27th April 1895
Susan daughter of Joseph Amos of Hexthorpe died on the 14th inst at Conisbro Fever Hospital.
30th January 1904
The Doncaster and Mexborough Joint Hospital Board require a working Engineer to attend to the electric lighting plant and other machinery and appliances in connection with their fever hospital.
Apply by letter enclosing not more than of testimonials stating experience and wages required.
21st May 1909
Mr Henry Baker presided over the monthly meeting of the Joint Hospital  Board held yesterday.  An interesting discussion on the hospital water supply arose from a report from the engineer which showed that the weekly consumption of water was 14000 gallons.
Mr Lee pointed out that this meant a daily average of 80 gallons per patient or four times the allowance usually accorded outside the hospital. 
Alderman Watson said that including the staff the average was cut down to 71 gallons.  The Medical Officer in answer to a question from the Chair made an interesting observation that a plentiful supply of water had a tendency to get patients out of the hospital quickly.
17th February 1914
All along the Don and Dearne Valleys a terrible fever epidemic is raging.  The monthly reports from Conisbro Isolation Hospital and the Wath, Swinton and Joint Hospitals are far from reassuring.  Typhoid, Diphtheria and Scarlet Fevers have got a horrible grip upon scores of people in the two valleys.  The accommodation at the hospital has been heavily taxed.  All the beds have been fully occupied for past two months and the authorities find themselves having to refuse admission.  The accommodation at the institution is so inadequate that the nurses and maids are having to sleep in a diphtheria ward.
Conisbrough Hospital Board have decided to give patients suffering from Scarlet Fever preference over Diphtheria cases when beds are scarce.
Quite a sensation was caused last week when a boy at Adwick Road School was found sitting among his classmates in an advanced stage of ‘peeling’.  It is said that the boys’ mother has been treating him for a cold for the three weeks he was suffering with Scarlet Fever.  The Master was promptly attended by Dr Huey and measures taken to prevent the disease spreading.
17th June 1914
There has been for over a year now a growing demand in the new colliery districts on the north side of Doncaster for an isolation hospital.  At the present time patients from that part of Doncaster are sent to the Conisbro Isolation Hospital.  With the population growing so is the number of patients.
18th June 1914
Mexbro Council last night decided to repeat its previous suggestion that the authorities of the Conisbro Isolation Hospital should inform intending patients of the time at which to expect the ambulance van.
13th August 1914
It has been stated that the Smallpox Hospital at Conisbro will be used for the reception of wounded soldiers.
16th October1914
An epidemic of Typhoid Fever at Denaby was reported to the Conisbro Hospital Board yesterday.  Out of 27 cases admitted to hospital during September 22 were from Denaby.  There were five deaths during the month and at the end of September there were 102 patients in hospital – 71 Scarlet Fever, 30 Typhoid and 1 Diphtheria.  Dr Maclure said that the case were occurring chiefly in the new parts of the village.  Mr J H Watson CC (County Coroner) said he had heard the opinion expressed that it was caused from old buildings as they were pulled down.  Dr Maclure however, said that the experts declared that the Typhoid bacillus existed for only a certain number of days in the surface soil.
16th April 1915
At last weeks meeting of the Conisbro Isolation Hospital it was on the suggestion of Mr Allen of Mexbro that a bulletin showing the condition of the Mexbro patients should be prepared three times a week and displayed outside the Mexbro Market Hall for the information of relatives.  Mr Baker asked if the same idea could be not carried out in other districts.
14th October 1922
Thurnscoe Urban Council have complained to the Doncaster and Mexbro Joint Hospital Board that Scarlet Fever patients have been discharged prematurely from Conisbro Isolation Hospital.  In reply Dr Maclure said that although the orthodox period of isolation was six weeks many authorities hold that four weeks is sufficient and patients had been discharged after four weeks from that institution.  The Doctor said that there was no more risk from the peeling of Scarlet Fever than from the peeling of sunburn.
25th March 1927
Smallpox in Doncaster is abating only five cases having been reported this week, but in the neighbouring mining village of Conisbrough the outbreak is still serious with 180 cases having been notified this year already.
15th October 1934
59 cases of infectious diseases 41 of which were scarlet fever and seven diphtheria were notified at Conisbrough and Denaby last quarter.