Water, drains and the laundry have been regular items in the Hospital Minute Books and here are a few of some interesting ones:
30 October 1856: Agreed to introduce the water from the Cambridge Waterworks Co. but the pump in the laundry not to be interfered with, being ‘peculiarly good for drinking purposes’.
1 June 1900: Recommended that ‘shoots [sic] be constructed from each ward balcony to get rid of all objectionable matter without delay’ [external chutes for laundry and rubbish were used at the Old Addenbrooke’s site until it closed in 1984].
19 October 1900: Hours of laundry women to be 7am-6pm with 1½ hours for meals
6 February 1901: Recommended that laundry women be allowed to work as extra hour per day ‘at an extra wage of 3d per day each’
8 November 1901: Report on use of Hobson’s Conduit water and its history including use for the new steam laundry. Committee looking into complaint concludes that the failure of the water at the fountain in Market Place was due to an obstruction and not the action of the hospital.
29 January 1902: Water from Hobson’s Conduit has been used for laundry only because it is soft, while water from the Waterboard is hard. Proposal to Hobson’s Conduit Trust that the hospital would pay for new pipe if they can carry on using the water (as it had for over 70 years).