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UK High Royds Asylum, Menston - June 2016

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History

High Royds Hospital (formerly known as the West Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylum) first opened on the 8th October 1888. The main purpose of the asylum was to contain and restrain mentally ill patients. People often spent decades imprisoned in the asylum, which was recognized in the High Royds Cemetery which stands as a testament to those who spent their last days there. People lived very repetitive and lonely lives in the asylum due to poor care and understanding of mental illness in the 19th century, and it was common for people to be admitted for minor mental illnesses, such as phobias, anxiety and learning disabilities.
The asylum was given the name Menston Mental Hospital in the 1920's, (and eventually became High Royds Asylum in 1963), and cures for mental illness were considered as an alternative to simply storing patients. The use of shock therapy was introduced with the intention of putting patients into a relaxed mental state, however this resulted in many patients screaming in pain, and sometimes caused them to become unconscious. Lobotomy was also a popular treatment at High Royds around this time.
The hospital was closed in 2003 because it had become outdated and unsuited to modern psychiatric practice.
The site is now being redeveloped into a new village, and all that remains is the admin block, which is grade II listed. Some features of the hospital will remain, such as the clock tower and ballroom.

 

I've been here a few times so the photos are from various trips. I only ever got to see the Admin block but it was worth it for the clock tower and ballroom which I'm glad they're keeping. Explored with @plod and a few others. Sadly this place is now a no-go, I think its safe to assume somebody had been caught by the residents which brought attention to the access point, as they always seem to have their eyes out. I'm glad I at least got to see the last little bit that was left while it still stands though.

 

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