The sanatorium, on the Hebden road, was built in 1919 by Bradford Health Authority. It had around 200 beds and accommodation for staff, including the Doctors. It is now redeveoped as houses.

Official Information

1939 Register

In 1939 there were

Medical Staff

  • 1 Medical Superintendant
  • 1 Assistant Medical Officer
  • 1 Matron
  • 2 Ward Sisters
  • 2 Staff Nurses
  • 1 Practitioner Nurse
  • 6 Probationer Nurses
  • 1 Student

Support Staff

  • 1 Cook
  • 1 Laundress
  • 2 Teacher including 1 Art teacher
  • 9 Domestic Servants
  • 1 Motor Driver
  • 1 Engineer
  • 1 Bank Clerk
Grassington Folk Museum Logo

A villager remembers:

Rene Allen never married. She had a brother called Michael but everyone called him Mickey.

Staff at Hospital
Official Information

Electoral Register

From the West Yorkshire Electoral registers 1840-1962

Back Row

  • (I)rene Allen lived in Grassington up Intake Lane
  • Arthur West was not registered as living locally
  • Dr Hailes is not local
  • Sheila Harker appears in the Registers in 1951 and 1954, living on Wood Lane
  • Margaret Talbot is not local

Front Row

  • Miss Blake could be Marjorie W Blake and was at the hospital from 1951 to 1956
  • Dr Robert Donaldson was the “Medical Superintendent” and lived at the Sanatorium/Hospital between 1939 and 1961 with his wife Mary
  • Miss Taylor could be Hannah G Taylor and was at the Hospital from 1949 until 1961
  • Dr Samson could be Louise Elsa Samson who was registered to vote in 1949, 1951 and 1956, but not 1954 and 55.

This would date the photo as being early 1950, possibly around the time the Sanatorium was changed over to a hospital

Initially for TB sufferers, it became a Psycho-Geriatric hospital in 1966 and finally closed in 1984.

Hospital Protest

The Craven Herald reported

The quality of life of 211 elderly psychiatric patients was at risk if they were moved from the low-cost Grassington Hospital, said Mr Peter Walbank, at the first meeting of the action committee formed to fight this proposal.

156 staff and ancillary workers would be unemployed, and there would be he loss of the meals-on-wheels service and of the unit for Humberside kidney patients who take Dales holidays.

The hospital had been deteriorating, but he believed closure wrong when three-quarters of it could be repaired for a fraction of the estimated £400,000.

Upper Wharfedale’s doctor Ian Kinnish agreed a compromise solution would be right. The chairman said the cost of repairs could be offset by selling the house inthe hospital grounds.

Grassington Folk Museum Logo

2024 memory

The nurse, with the dark hair, holding the clipboard is Sister Pauline Brown.

A villager remembers that the petition was taken to London on the train. Afterwards, the group retired to the pub and missed the train home. The organiser, Peter Walbank, wasn’t happy with the group.

Peter went on to found “The Dickensian”, a pre-Christmas Festival in the village. His shop is now the Stripey Badge and a blue plaque to him can be seen on the wall.

Further details of the Sanatorium can be found on the High Royds Digital Archive (Click here).