Friday, 14 March 2008

The East Malling Hospital of Infectious Diseases

A friend who lives in Four Acres of East Malling often finds bit of old bricks, fragments of what appears to be blue tiles and twisted old bits of metal when digging out in his garden. We've always thought this was odd as we assumed that before becoming residential the site had been just fields. However, having got my hands recently on a map of East Malling in 1908 it appears that Four Acres was originally (or at some stage) a hospital for infectious diseases. A later map, from 1932, shows that the hospital was still present on the site. The housing on Four Acres dates back to the 1960s and therefore it is possible that the hospital existed up until this time. The fact that a previous structure existed, could perhaps explain the rubble found in the earth. I carried out a few quick searches on Google and Google Books, but unfortunately cannot find anything further about the hospital. Thus, if anyone has any knowledge on this please post on the blog. If you see a parade of diggers, tv cameras in East Malling in the near future, you'll know that Time Team lot have got wind and are currently excavating the site. And then, as usual, when deciding there is nothing of interest, leaving the place reminiscent of the Somme in 1916. I'm sure my friend will be pleased.