Abandoned West Park Asylum, Epsom, UK

west-park-hospital-epsom-abandoned (Image: Tuna-baron, cc-sa-3.0)

After its closure in 2002, West Park Mental Hospital in Surrey, England, allegedly had a number of morbidly fascinating abandoned curiosities, such as a padded cell and a cluttered mortuary. However, since 2010, Crest Nicholson and Linden Homes have been demolishing some ruined buildings and restoring the original Grade II listed ones in order to create a housing development called Noble Park.

west-park-hospital-epsom-abandoned-2

west-park-hospital-epsom-abandoned-3 (Images: Tuna-baron (top, bottom), cc-sa-3.0)

The attractive red brick West Park Mental Hospital opened in the 1920s.  Notably, it was given the title ‘mental hospital’ rather than ‘asylum,’ which became a compulsory title-switch for all UK psychiatric services after the 1930 Mental Treatment Act.  Before 1970, West Park had facilities for around 2,000 patients, but the hospital’s closure was arranged in the 1990s, after local authorities began providing support for mentally disabled people away from the old institutions.

west-park-hospital-epsom-abandoned-4

west-park-hospital-epsom-abandoned-5 (Images: Tuna-baron (top, bottom), cc-sa-3.0)

Sadly, an arson attack destroyed the Great Hall in 2003 but the hospital’s old water tower remains intact and is being restored as part of the new development.  Rosebury Housing Association intends Noble Park to create a healthy new community with parkland, play areas and over 300 homes in traditional red brick and with slate roofs.  Solar energy is being utilised and cycling is encouraged by use of access routes and handy bike storage.

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