Its wide corridors spread out in space and time. For 120 years, Cane hill contained the insanity of its residents.
Up to 2,000 patients at the same time. Following its creation in 1882, it saw the treatment of its patients evolve. From a collective mental home to solitary cells. From cold showers to chemical straightjackets. From pious gatherings to art therapy. This hospital saw it all and was recognized. At first rate.
The names of eminent patients were noted in the registers: faithful to the house maxim, Mrs Chaplin, mother, Mr Bowie, brother, thus came here to soothe their troubled minds. Difficul to always be trendy...
The size of the site and its large number of buildings finally became overwhelming. One by one the patients left for more modern establishments. The centre closed its doors in the 1990s.
For a decade, it was abandoned. During this period, it had to cope with flood and fire. Was it bad located, or was it bad luck? Attempts of reclassification or conversion have failed repeatedly. There is no future for this piece of English history.
In the end the wrecking ball will get the better of Cane Hill*.
We launched our sleeping bags over the evil looking fence and we were in.
1am, Saturday night. We set about finding a place to sleep in the women's ward, a little room that's hard to reach in order to avoid the patrolling guards...
3am: Its impossible to sleep. Going out for night photos, poor quality because of the constant game of hide and seek we have to play.
6am: awoke to the sound of a bulldozer and pneumatic drill. The building next door collapses.
We spent the day on tiptoes, the demolition continuing even on a Sunday.
As we exited, we were caught by a security guard and his dogs. Thankfully we were on the outside of the fence.
We told him to fuck off, and we were gone.
* Text and photos taken from the book "Forbidden Places: Exploring our abandoned heritage"
I don't believe they demolished Cane Hill, I just wanted to get back there after some years with friend but now I can see I will have to find another place.. Althought I took a lot of good photos there, so as you as I can see! Take care.
I can't believe that they knocked this place down, especially since all the other local Asylum's were turned into luxury flats!
We used to visit Cane Hill back in the late 90's and it was already well-decayed. It was a very eerie place, with lots of strange noises and cold wind whistling through the place. What was really strange was finding the patients hair salon, with the floor completely collapsed, but all the lights round the mirrors still shining brightly - over 8 years after the hospital closed!!!
Sadly this was long before Urbexing really took off, so there are no pictures, just memories.
These photos are amazing--also looked at your pics of Greystone Hospital in New Jersey. I am amazed at the waste of so many pieces of equipment, beds, etc. One would think these items could have been sold off to get at least some of the taxpayers money back. Easy come, easy go.
Keep up the wonderful work.
New Jersey, USA
Thanks again for these amazing devastating pictures....Having worked there in my youth it is quite something to see and read.
what a pity, again a beautiful building demolished, and other new and often ugly buildings will rise.......!
Thanks so much for your photos and stories, love them
Thank you for sharing your wonderful explore, the great stories and the pics. It is always a pleasure when someone shares a wonderful find!
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