Monument unveiled in memory of hospital patients

Memorial to remember the people who lived, worked and died at Fairfield Hospital formerly the Three

Memorial to remember the people who lived, worked and died at Fairfield Hospital formerly the Three Counties Asylum - Credit: Archant

A MEMORIAL has been donated to remember the thousands of people who lived, worked and died at a hospital.

The memorial coincides with the 153rd anniversary on March 8 of the opening of the Three Counties Asylum, which later became Fairfield Hospital.

It was donated by Jennings Funeral Services of Ickleford to the Three Counties Asylum historical group and will travel round as the centrepiece of their exhibitions.

Chairman of the historical group Richard Knight said: “For me personally it is a wonderful thing because so many people are interested in the asylum, but people forget that approximately 4,000 people are buried there.

“We wanted the memorial to be respectful, but not morbid, more of a commemorative stone.”

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The memorial will be displayed thoughout the year but eventually the group would like it to be placed in its planned museum or within St Luke’s Chapel in the old asylum’s grounds.

Mr Knight added: “I hope that it will make people remember. The graveyard was in such a state for many years, but a lot of trees and bushes have been planted to make it a nice area to walk through. Only one of the original Victorian small iron crosses remains.”

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The memorial has been produced in black granite with the asylum and crest in gold leaf.

Fairfield Park and Fairfield Hall now occupy the 66 hectare site of the former hospital, which closed in 1999. The group is also looking for artefacts for its display. If anybody has any old memorabilia from Fairfield Hospital or Three Counties Asylum, contact Richard Knight on 01462 630912.

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