St Lukes Woodside Hospital - Muswell Hill, N10
St Luke's Hospital for Lunatics was opened in Moorfields in a converted foundry building in the Parish of St Lukes (a church in Old St in EC1) in 1751 It was the second public institution in London created to look after mentally ill people, after the nearby Hospital of St. Mary of Bethlem (Bedlam),founded in 1246).In 1787 it moved to a new purpose-built hospital in Old Street & remained there until 1916 when the building was sold during the war and the patients were discharged or transferred to other institutions. The building was then used to print banknotes for the Bank of England and then demolished in the early 1960s.
After a lengthy period the Governors purchased three adjacent Victorian villas (Norton Lees, Roseneath and Lea Wood) in Woodside Avenue, Muswell Hill and various blocks were built within the site and the third St Luke's Hospital was officially opened in 1930 by Princess Helena Victoria (granddaughter of Queen Victoria) as the Woodside Nerve Hospital.In 1948, on joining the NHS, the Hospital became the St Luke's-Woodside Hospital, the in-patient branch of the Department of Psychological Medicine of the Middlesex Hospital. In the 1960s two new wings were opened - one for acutely disturbed psychiatric patients and the other for adolescent patients with drug dependency.
After being transferred to various health authorities and trusts over the years it was finally administered by the Camden and Islington Mental Health NHS Trust from 2002 before the hospital was closing down in 2010. The remaining few in-patients were transferred to St Pancras Hospital.
Serial killer Anthony Hardy (nicknamed the Camden Ripper) was released from St Luke’s shortly before murdering two women in 2002, but despite the bad press that came from the murder, the hospital set amongst it's beautiful grounds was still celebrated by those who used it.
Hanover Housing Trust have bought the site for £26 million who plan to build homes for mainly people over 55 years old. The three old villas will be refurbished, extended and converted into flats and the other buildings on site will be demolished to make way for more flats and some houses.An underground car park for the residents is also in the plans. The empty hospital is heavily secured and preparatory work has commenced.