Many people remember the two busts that stood each side of the main entrance at the Old Site; they were moved to the Clinical School Library here on the Hills Road site, but are now on Level 3 of the main Hospital near the Theatres.
The busts are of Sir George Paget and Sir George Humphry. Paget was a physician at Addenbrooke’s for 45 years from 1839. He is remembered for introducing, in 1842 bedside examinations in clinical medicine, the first in the UK. Paget was born in 1809 the 7th child of a ship-owner and brewer of Great Yarmouth; he entered Gonville and Caius in 1827 and gained his degree in Medicine in 1833. In 1872 he was appointed the Regius Professor of Physic. He died in 1892 from an attack of influenza.
Sir George Humphry was one of the giants of Cambridge medicine in the 19th century and did much to raise the Medical School from a position of insignificance to one of world renown. Humphry was born in Sudbury Suffolk in 1820 the son of the distributor of stamps for Suffolk. He entered St Bartholomew’s Hospital in 1839 and was appointed surgeon at Addenbrooke’s in 1842 later becoming Professor of Human Anatomy then the first Professor of Surgery at the University. He left the staff in 1894 and died in 1896.
These two men are recognised as being responsible for turning the study of medicine at Cambridge University from one of neglect in the first half of the 19th century to being one of the largest Medical Schools in the country with its medical degree being considered one of the highest professional qualifications by the end of the century.