Newsham Park Hospital

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Newsham Park Hospital
Construction Began 1874
Opened 1954 (as a psychiatric facility)
Closed 1997
Current Status Preserved
Building Style Single Building
Architect(s) Alfred Waterhouse
Location Liverpool, Merseyside
Alternate Names
  • Royal Liverpool Seamen’s Orphanage


The Liverpool Seamen’s Orphan Institution was established in order to provide care and education for the many Liverpool children who lost families at sea. A group of Liverpool merchants and shipowners funded the establishment of the orphanage in 1869, in a temporary rented building on Duke Street and in 1870 Liverpool City Council donated land next to Newsham Park and a large building was erected to house and educate the orphans. It was opened in 1874. The building had separate wings for boys and girls but shared dining facilities, hospital and classrooms. All orphans were taught reading and writing, in addition girls learned knitting and needlework and boys were instructed in carpentry. The Institution also made an agreement with the ‘Indefatigable’ training ship, to train boys after leaving the orphanage. During World War II, the orphans were evacuated to Frankby, Wirral but returned to Newsham Park in 1948.

In 1949 the decision was made to close it down and in 1951 the building was sold to the Ministry of Health and turned into a hospital which itself has recently closed. The land and buildings were sold to the Ministry Of Health and the Newsham Park Hospital opened its doors in 1954. In 1965 the adjourning chapel was demolished in 1965, a Health Centre is now on the site of the chapel. The hospital developed its own psychiatric department and received an influx of patients with severe mental problems. The hospital officially stopped taking new patients in 1988 and in 1992 all remaining patients and staff were relocated.

In 1992 with the closure of Rainhill Lunatic Asylum the inmates were moved to Newsham Park Hospital taking up 90% of its space and some £1.6 million was spent on the hospital so it could house its new patients. There are still notices posted on boards in the School block and paperwork in the property that are dated 1996. All records of patients and staff have been closed for 100 years from 1997 when the building was finally vacated of patients and staff.

In 1997 the property was brought by a property developer. In December 2013 a Planning Application was made for planning consent to use part of the building as events venue, including kitchen facilities, dining restaurant and bar, function and seminar facilities and lay out external seating area and car parking with associated works.