A VERY HEALTHY HISTORY.
Byline: DAN LONGMAN ECHO Correspondent firstname.lastname@example.org @dklheritage
THE original Liverpool Infirmary was built in 1749 and situated on the site where St George's Hall stands today. Back then, the town's population consisted of approximately 20,000 souls but, on opening, the infirmary could only accommodate around 30 of these patients at any one time.
Fundraising continued to aid its expansion and staff were able to admit 122 patients by the end of the first year.
While working in Liverpool in 1774, the Yorkshire physician Dr Matthew Dobson discovered a link between sugar and diabetes, a breakthrough which changed the shape of medical research across the world.
In the 1780s, Dr James Currie argued for separate care to be given to patients suffering from mental illness and an asylum was built within the grounds for this purpose.
The design of this building was adopted by several other authorities during the construction of their own care-orientated institutions.
In 1824, the Infirmary moved to Brownlow Street to a new building designed in the Greek Revival style by John Foster Junior. This second incarnation had enough space to house 230 beds and saw many innovative and entrepreneurial physicians ply their learned craft.
A number of the Infirmary's medical men went on to found the Liverpool Medical School, a key inspiration behind the establishment of the University of Liverpool.
The population of the city appeared to know no bounds and, in 1890, a third Infirmary opened on Pembroke Place. This was to the designs of the very successful Liverpool architect Alfred Waterhouse, who consulted with Florence Nightingale in order to achieve maximum sanitation and ventilation.
It is said that the US Surgeon-General reported to the Government at the time that 'the Liverpool Royal Infirmary is probably the best hospital in the world'.
Today the building is used as a general practice and by university students studying for their own medical careers.
| ||BIRD'S-EYE VIEW: The third Infrmary when first proposed in the 1880s
| ||GRAND OLD BUILDING: The Infirmary seen in modern times
| ||HOW THINGS WERE: Nurses await their patients in the operating room in the early 1900s
| ||SERIOUS BUSINESS: Doctors and nurses pose for the camera in this 20th century shot