Southmead Hospital Saved Me In 1934 – Marion’s Memory Lane

Marion now.

When my grandparents’ house was condemned in the early 30s they were offered a council house in Southmead or Knowle West. They decided to choose Southmead as there was a hospital and my grandfather had heart problems. After moving to Eastleigh Road my grandfather did have a slight heart attack and he was admitted to the hospital for a short time.

When I was about three years old I was sent to Southmead Hospital with double pneumonia and it was touch and go whether I would pull through. But with good nursing and treatment I am here today. My Grandmother took me to have my picture taken (shown here) shortly after my recovery.

How things have changed from then to now. Nurses wore blue dresses and starched white aprons and a white starched cap. If they left the ward they had to wear their navy-blue cloak with a hood. Matron ruled the nurses and the wards. Visitors sitting on beds was not allowed. Today nurses seem to be able to go outside wearing the same clothes as they do on the wards. Over the last seventy years some things have changed for the good and some not so good.

Thanks to Southmead Hospital Marion is the picture of health here in 1934, and in 2018! However, Pneumonia was one of the biggest killer diseases in the 1930s and in 1933 took the lives of nearly 11,000 children aged 5 and under. To the left is a warning poster from the time.