St. James's Hospital

St. James's Hospital

Postby kinsella » Thu Nov 20, 2008 1:07 am

I was reading about some of the hospitals in Christine Casey's "The buildings of Ireland - Dublin" and she gives an interesting description of St. James's in former times - that the hospital used to rank among the largest classically inspired buildings in Dublin. Most of these original buildings are now largely demolished and she describes the hospital as it stands today as a mess.

Some background on the early buildings:
The C18 design has been tentatively attributed to Richard Mills. It was originally a large plain U-plan structure open to the rear, with a formal north entrance front to St. James's street. This screened an enormous E-W dining hall lit by gargantuan round-headed widows, which was entered through an advanced and pedimented centrepiece ad framed by the blind gables of the E and W ranges.

The three principal mid-C18 additions were a two-storey linen factory and adjoining master's house W of and parallel to the W range; a long narrow foundling range closing the court to the rear; and a chapel with an apsidal chancel on an E-W axis, built behind the foundling range in 1764.

In 1803 Francis Johnson was called in to modernise and extend the hospital. His work strengthened the geometry of the original design. He remodelled the front range, adding a battlemented parapet and a cupola to the dining hall and subtly classicising the gawky blind front gables of the E and W ranges. He rebuilt the foundling range, built a detached infirmary to the SW, and replaced the C18 chapel with a Gothic chapel on a N-S axis perpendicular to the front range.

Following extensive remdelling in 1953 bcame the largest general hospital in ireland. The early C18 quadrangle and Johnson's foundling range were then removed,:(, except for ther basement which was archaelogically recorded and is preserved beneath a new building. All that now survives from the C18 is the modest linen factory and adjoining master's house.

Do any photographs, drawings or images exist of the hospital as it was?
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:09 pm

There is an early photograph (or possibly a print) of the front range with the Francis Johnson castelations, but before the Victorian chapel was tacked onto the front door, I have a reference for it somewhere. There's also a good photograph of the later main arched entrance on James' Street, with flanking high walls.

Image

Brookings print of 1728 shows the original (1701) appearance of the front building, the basement of which was excavated and survives, as shown recently on that 'Cities of the Underworld' or whatever, TV series.

Apart from that basement, the earliest buildings to survice from the complex are definitely that Master's House and adjoining industrial range on the western boundary, backing onto 'Cut Throat Lane'. These buildings appear on the first O.S. map (1847), but it's not entirely clear if the buildings depicted on Rocques map (1756) in a similar, but not identical, position are the same structures. The main house appears to have both early and late features, which could of course mean that it's an early house, altered later.

Image Image

My earliest memory of James Hospital was of a large, campus style, green area open onto James Street, dotted with mature trees and criss-crossed by paths with little pointy signs directing you to the Eastern Health Board pre-fab where you got your E111 forms to travel in the EEC,

Back in the 80s I believe there was a proposal, by the architects who built the new hospital, for a very large 'Post Modern' gate structure for the entrance on James Street, that some staid review panel took great delight in cutting out of the contract, but I don't know if that's true or not.

These are the maps, I'll have a look for more stuff.

Image
Rocque's map

Image
1847 Ordnance Survey map.

Early examples of re-branding are in evidence with the name of this institution continuously change over 200 years from 'The Poor House' to 'The City Work House', then 'The South Union Workhouse', and finally 'The South Dublin Union.'
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby tommyt » Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:25 pm

can't make out if 'Murdering Lane' survived this nomenclature makeover post-Rocque!
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Thu Nov 20, 2008 11:40 pm

Looks like it !

Image
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby hutton » Fri Nov 21, 2008 12:05 am

Rocque Map wrote:Cutt Throat Lane... Murdering Lane (now Cromwell's Quarters)


Must have been a lovely place for moonlight strolls :D
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Fri Nov 21, 2008 12:23 am

I love the way they stitched Cromwell up for this.

Imagine if there was a similar laneway in London where they changed the name to 'Paddy's Parade' !
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby kinsella » Wed Nov 26, 2008 2:27 am

Thanks for the images/info Gunter.

Where do you get them?
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Smithfield Resi » Mon Apr 27, 2009 7:52 am

2751/09

Full Development Description

development on an approximately 1.148 hectare site in the south western section of the St James Hospital Complex, bounded by the South Circular Road to the west, the existing hospital complex to the north and east and the Linear Park parallel to St James Walk to the south. The development will consist of the demolition of the late nineteenth century chapel building, single storey modular buildings accommodating health services and offices, a single storey Hospital Stores building, a two storey modular building accommodating Hospital General Support Services (GSS) and a disused single storey pump house; the relocation of an existing 200 space staff car park; and the construction of: 1) An eight storey Private Hospital totalling 29,644 sqm. comprising a 18,010sqm two storey basement car park providing 408 no. parking spaces for patients, staff and visitors; a four storey atrium, retail/cafe areas, pathology laboratory, diagnostic imagery, minor injuries and a facilities management area at ground floor; the Endoscopy Department, Haematology/Oncology and Cardiac Diagnostic facilities at first floor; the Operating Theatre Suite, Stage 1 recovery area, Stage 2 recovery area (combined with pre operation preparation), Theatre Sterile Supply Unit and a Clinical Treatment Area at second floor; the Out Patients Department, Nephrology, Physiotherapy, Diagnostics and Infusion area at third floor, 196 no. bed in-patient ward accommodation on the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh floors, and a 670 sqm recessed plant room at roof level: 2) A 47 sqm. single storey block on the south west corner of the site to accommodate a new oxygen tank and supporting plant. 3) A two storey lift and lift lobby on the western face of the proposed hospital in order to facilitate patient movements between the Public and Private Hospital. 4) The provision of a landscaped garden together with steps, paving and seating within the adjoining Linear Park to the south as part of the transition from Linear Park to the Hospital entrance plaza. 5) All other site development works above and below ground required to faciliate the development including internal circulation routes, pedestrian walkways, hard and soft landscaping and lighting.

Any historic pics or info on the Chapel?
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Wed May 06, 2009 12:57 am

It's nothing special, knock it, we've other battles to fight.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Smithfield Resi » Wed May 06, 2009 7:15 am

It's nothing special, knock it, we've other battles to fight.


I thought there was a DCC policy on the reuse of buildings, even if this doesn't function as a chapel in the new co-located hospital, isn't there an argument for reuse?
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Wed May 06, 2009 8:38 am

Possibly!
I'll try to run off some photographs later. It is the dead-end of the hospital, even one or two of the good trees behind the boundary wall died, or fell over, a year or two ago. Sometimes redevelopment is the right option!

If I can get some shots this morning I'll post them up and you can have a look see yourself.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby forrestreid » Wed May 06, 2009 6:04 pm

Smithfield Resi wrote:I thought there was a DCC policy on the reuse of buildings, even if this doesn't function as a chapel in the new co-located hospital, isn't there an argument for reuse?


Well, seeing as there is going to be an eight story building occupying nearly the whole of the site at ground floor level, it is hard to think of any way to accommodate it into the development that wouldn't look ruddy ridiculous.


What I am more annoyed about in that development is that they are planning to have a minor injuries area in the ground floor.

And just about a dozen metres from the St. James Hospital Accident and Emergency Department at that. Talk about wasteful dupliction of resources!

Is this the future of healthcare in Dublin 8?

Little Johhny from a wealthy (VHI) family splits his forehead and gets it stitched up in 45 minutes in the co-located hospital "minor injuries"area.

Little Billy from Meath St. splits his forehead and get the pleasurable experience of few hours wait in the St. James Accident and Emergency zoo.

Sometimes I wish this site was about more than the bricks and morter aspects of planning
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby gunter » Wed May 06, 2009 8:06 pm

Bigger arguments there, but these are the bricks & mortar, as promised:

Image

Image

Image

Not my cuppa tea, but decent and in good condition, and still functioning as a church, much to my surprise.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby johnglas » Thu May 07, 2009 8:40 pm

Yes, gunter, a bit hectic inside (and needing some painterly first-aid!) but nice to see the pics of an out-of-the-way bldg (well, for me anyway). At least it's not a 'multicultural meditation locus' or some other suitable case for treatment. Date? 1880s or so? Thought there might have been a much earlier chapel given the site's long history.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Yixian » Thu Jul 30, 2009 6:29 pm

Could anyone post any photos of and around St James's as it is today? Is it really as ugly as the OP suggests? Are there any plans to improve the appearance of the hospital or it's surrounding area?
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby constat » Sat Aug 01, 2009 6:58 pm

In my day, this hospital was well knon as St Kevin's.
Gunter, as you appear to know the area well, perhaps you have the answer.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby rashers » Sat Aug 01, 2009 7:18 pm

constat wrote:In my day, this hospital was well knon as St Kevin's.


I think we are of the same generation. :)
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Smithfield Resi » Sat Aug 01, 2009 10:13 pm

On the move maybe?

Additional Info Request

1. The proposed development would include the demolition of the 19th Century chapel in the grounds of James Hospital. In view of the local interest in this building the applicant is requested to investigate the feasibility of the relocation of this building to a different location within the site and how this operation might be preformed. The applicant is also required to submit a detailed photographic survey of the Chapel together with an architectural and heritage assessment of the building.
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Denton » Sun Aug 09, 2009 7:05 pm

It's a great hospital, if not a bit crowded.

I'm a student nurse there. If you want i can take some pictures as i spend A LOT of time there.



The "crypts" of the old workhouse are under the Trinity centre, i learned this from "Who do you think you are" on bbc 1 when Chris Moyles was tracing his irish routes.




The new Nuclear Medicine building is being built in the carpark behind Hosptial 1 and 2. I have no idea what it's going to look like but the hospital staff lost a lot of space's in the process.


As for the "2 storey" underground car park in the plan cited above, it's a weak 1 storey and over priced.


The hospital is good, very uniform in design but everything after that is a disaster. The burns unit was tagged on, so were the oncology wards and the Private wards.

The A&E is far to small and the Outpatients is also to small for the scale of its job.



There's a new ICU that was recently finished, but it isn't open yet. It's main draw for the staff being a new larger break room. There currently ISN'T enough staff for the new ICU beds.


There is also 2 HDU units, loosing 6 beds from 2 wards in the process. Only one of the 2 4 beded HDU's is in use.

Thats more of a HSE problem but the Architecture also weigh's in a lot in the layout and use of the hospital. The lift access after all is sparse and the distance's involved in crossing it pretty far.

To get from the staff locker room to the wards, you basically have to change post code from Rialto to James's Street.


There's a lot of small ad on's being plastered onto the older buildings too. The cantine is getting an upgrade and there's an odd "cargo" building behind Hospital 7 Unit 3, which blocks out it's windows for some unknown reason.

Also there STILL some portacabins lying around the place...:rolleyes:
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Yixian » Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:16 pm

I'm a medical student from the UK coming to do a research project at St James's next summer, I'd love to see some pics of the inside and out if possible Denton!
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Denton » Wed Aug 19, 2009 3:46 pm

Yixian wrote:I'm a medical student from the UK coming to do a research project at St James's next summer, I'd love to see some pics of the inside and out if possible Denton!


Well i doubt i can give you pictures, or even take them, of the interior.

But i can draw a plan of it....

I can photograph the outside though. Thats easy enough.

Nothing special about it. It's a hospital.

But there are a few jems here and there. Some abondoned Courtyards that were never really designed for use for instance.


Its the older buildings, and not the main hospital that are of more interest. Also the new Nuclear Medicine building better be good.

After all a lot of car spaces went for that thing, it better be worth it!;)
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Re: St. James's Hospital

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Nov 30, 2009 4:31 pm

Take down and move chapel facing bulldozer
Published: November 30, 2009Posted in: Irish NewsTags:
Take down and move chapel facing bulldozer

A church in the grounds of St James’s Hospital could be relocated, rather than knocked down, following a Dublin City Council decision. The proposed demolition of the 19th-century chapel caused a furore when the plans emerged earlier this year. But the council has told the developers, Synchrony Properties Ltd, to investigate the feasibility of relocating the building within the site. The request was made “in view of the local interest in this building”.

Residents in Kilmainham, South Circular Road and Rialto, as well as councillors Clare Byrne, Criona Ni Dhalaigh and John Gallagher, all sent letters objecting to the proposed demolition. Cllr Byrne (FG) said she was one of three councillors who began a process through the council in May last year to give the building protected status. She said: “It was agreed to initiate the process to add the building to the list of protected structures. However, this process was halted by DCC, so the status of the church is not clear.

“There was a very good report on the building done by the School of Architecture in UCD last year. A number of students looked at the church and gave the report, which argued that it should be protected, to Dublin City Council.”

Evening Herald
http://www.herald.ie/national-news/city-news/take-down-and-move-chapel-facing-bulldozer-1958943.html
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