Charlotte Stephenson Ward - History

The Charlotte Stephenson Ward should be differentiated from the Lady Stephenson Wing which opened 9 years earlier and was originally referred to simply as the 'West Wing'. The Lady Stephenson Wing was opened on 28th October 1911 as an extension of the main building by Earl Grey and was the outcome of a gift of £4,000 from Sir W. H. Stephenson, the Lord Mayor of Newcastle, and his daughters in memory of his late wife who had died in 1901. It was hoped the extension would accommodate an additional 50 patients and have the facilities to treat all types of TB, not just pulmonary TB which the sanatorium had focused on up to now.

The Charlotte Stephenson Ward however was erected as part of a series of extensions in 1920 and opened by the Duke of Northumberland. A large sum of money had been raised by the Lord Mayor of Newcastle for these extensions with an additional £2,500 coming from Miss Kate Stephenson resulting in the ward being named after her late sister, Charlotte, who had sadly died 6 years earlier in 1914.

Charlotte Elizabeth Stephenson was the eldest daughter of Sir William Haswell Stephenson of Elswick House, Newcastle, and filled the position of Lady Mayoress of Newcastle for three years, 1909-1912, whilst he was serving as Chief Magistrate. She was a vice-president and governor of the Poor Children's Holiday Association and had been involved in many of their ventures and laid the foundation stone for the Lady Stephenson Wing in memory of her mother.

The Ward built in her name was a long and open ward with high lofty ceilings and large windows, characteristic of sanatorium buildings, and had long verandahs running along its south side where patients could be wheeled out into the sun in their beds. It ran off from the west side of the main building, which was the Lady Stephenson Wing.


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