Closure of Old Addenbrooke’s

The original Addenbrooke’s Hospital finally closed its doors on 31 October 1984. There were 28 patients to move on that day and last was a young Cambridge man who left the ‘Old Site’ at 12.15p.m.

Addenbrooke’s Hospital was founded with a legacy of £4,500 from Dr John Addenbrooke in 1719 and opened it doors in Trumpington Street on 13 October 1766 with 20 beds, four wards, three physicians, three surgeons, a matron, two nurses, two maidservants and a porter.

During the first year it treated 106 in-patients and saw 157 out-patients and its income, in the form of benefactions and subscriptions, totalled £1,388.

In the mid 1950’s the bed compliment peaked at 390. And it was about this time that plans were started to build a new hospital on a 44 acre site on Hills Road. The ‘new site’ hospital admitted its first patients in October 1961.

In an article written at the time of the closure of the Old Site it says that ‘after 218 years Addenbrooke’s had ended its first phase but it was not the end of the hospital. Addenbrooke’s may look entirely different… but its aim continues to treat the sick people of Cambridge’.

The article concludes saying that it hoped that ‘Dr John Addenbrooke would have been proud of all his hospital has achieved’ and I am sure as Addenbrooke’s Hospital has celebrated its 250th anniversary those sentiments are still true today.

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