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Highcroft Hall Erdington circa 1936 to 1950

Morturn

Super Moderator
Staff member
Just off the top of my head, it was Aston Union Workhouse and then became Highcroft Hospital. I am wondering if highcroft Hall was a local name?

I do know it was a geriatric ward for the elderly, and it was also home to a lot of people with both mental and physical disabilities. There were a lot of ‘stories’ associated with the site. Some say it used to home quite dangerous inmates in padded cells etc. I was asked to develop and print a set of photos from an exhibition showing some of the restraint devices used at the hospital.

With changes in medical care and new drugs, these practices fell out of use.
 

Alberta

Super Moderator
Staff member
Highcroft is now a beautiful development of house and flats fronted by the original entrance.
My mother in law worked there in the50s/ 60s and some of the patients were challenging but I think the padded cells were no longer in use.
It housed a mixture of what then were called Mental patients and Geriatric patients.
I visited a friend who was a patient in 1969 ( she had suffered what was called a nervous breakdown), The place was still Dickensian and dismal , not an environment to lift your spirits.
 

Lady Penelope

master brummie
My Aunt was in Highcroft for a while in the early 70's I think it was. May have been late 60's. She had what was then called 'disseminated sclerosis'. I couldn't understand why she was so upset about going there if she would be made better but Mom said it was because everyone remembered it as a workhouse and there was a stigma attached. Understandable perhaps.
 

pjmburns

master brummie
I think my husband's Gran died there in 1970. The address on her death certificate is 18 Highcroft Road - she had what would now be called dementia.
 

owerkid

Brummie babby
Just off the top of my head, it was Aston Union Workhouse and then became Highcroft Hospital. I am wondering if highcroft Hall was a local name?

I do know it was a geriatric ward for the elderly, and it was also home to a lot of people with both mental and physical disabilities. There were a lot of ‘stories’ associated with the site. Some say it used to home quite dangerous inmates in padded cells etc. I was asked to develop and print a set of photos from an exhibition showing some of the restraint devices used at the hospital.

With changes in medical care and new drugs, these practices fell out of use.
Have you any of those photos still available for purchase please?
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
i have a family birth cert here saying date of birth 3.8.1947..where born 18 highcroft road at highcroft hall hospital...the child was taken for adoption at about 8 months old...from what i understand due to the mothers mental state

lyn
 

devonjim

master brummie
i have a family birth cert here saying date of birth 3.8.1947..where born 18 highcroft road at highcroft hall hospital...the child was taken for adoption at about 8 months old...from what i understand due to the mothers mental state

lyn
Hi Lyn,
Highcroft was being used as a routine maternity hospital at this time, I have a family member who was born there in June '48.
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
thanks for that info jim...dudley road hospital must have been full up then as the rellie lived on the door step

lyn
 

mw0njm.

A Brummie Dude
When i was at Elliot st school we had to go to Slade rd clinic. alongside the clinic was a high wire fence. separating,the clinic from the hospital for folks with a mental prob. they would stand by the wire and ask for cigarettes and matches. so sad.
 

Morturn

Super Moderator
Staff member
A lot of people were institutionalised who could have had a better quality of life outside. Those places were of their time.
 

CathyH

New Member
We used to live opposite Highcroft Hall at 452 Slade Road in the early 60s. There was an event one summer with Jimmy Clitheroe and a puppet show which amazed me - I must have been 6 at the time. I remember being told that a patient had 'escaped' and murdered (tried to murder?) someone at the bus stop near our house. The institution did have a real fear attached to it - my sister and brother used to threaten each other with 'being sent to Highcroft Hall'.
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
Hi Lyn,
Highcroft was being used as a routine maternity hospital at this time, I have a family member who was born there in June '48.
hi jim the mother in this case was a patient at all saints in 1939...so it could be she was there due to mental health reasons or because the hospital was used as an overflow..

lyn
 
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