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Bloomsbury Project

Bloomsbury Institutions


London Temperance Hospital

Also known as National Temperance Hospital


It was founded in 1873 as a hospital which espoused the values of the temperance movement

As soon as 1875 its Gower Street premises were already thought to be too small, and a fund was started to raise money to acquire a larger site for the Hospital

The foundation stone of the new building in Hampstead Road (on the corner of Cardington Street) was laid in 1879

In early 1885 the Hospital moved to Hampstead Road, and a new wing was opened in October that year (The Lancet, 1885)

It became known as the National Temperance Hospital in 1932

On the foundation of the National Health Service (NHS) in 1948, it came under the Paddington Group Hospital Management Committee

It joined the University College Hospital Group in 1968

The NHS reorganisations of 1974–1982 saw it incorporated into South Camden District, Camden and Islington Area Health Authority, then came under the management of Bloomsbury Health Authority in 1982 until its closure

It closed in 1990

What was reforming about it?

It did not use alcohol in its medical treatments unless this was absolutely unavoidable

Where in Bloomsbury

It was at 112 Gower Street from its foundation 1873 to 1885, when it moved a few hundred yards north of Bloomsbury to the corner of Hampstead Road and Cardington Street

Website of current institution

It no longer exists


The former Temperance Hospital building in Hampstead Road, standing derelict in 2008

Books about it

James Edmunds, The Non-Alcoholic Treatment of Disease: Notes of Cases Treated at the London Temperance Hospital (1876)

A. Pearce Gould, A Year’s Surgery at the London Temperance Hospital (1884)

C. E. Dumbleton, A Report of One Hundred and Twenty-Nine Consecutive Surgical Operations Treated without Alcohol in the London Temperance Hospital, under the care of James Edmunds, MD (1891)

Benjamin Ward Richardson,‘Work in the London Temperance Hospital,’ in Asclepiad, vol. 9 (1892), no. 34

Benjamin Ward Richardson,‘The Treatment of Disease without Alcohol: A Review of Medical Practice in the Wards of the London Temperance Hospital,’ in Asclepiad, vol. 10 (1893), no. 37

Benjamin Ward Richardson,‘The Treatment of Disease without Alcohol (drawn from five hundred cases), Report no. II,’ in Asclepiad, vol. 11 (1894–1895), no. 41

Joan E. Frame, Alive and Lively 100 Hundred Years Later: A Centennial Report on the National Temperance Hospital, 1873–1973 (1973)

Its annual reports were published; copies are held in the Wellcome Library

There is also a short history online at University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (opens in new window)


Extensive general, financial, and admission and discharge records are held by the UCLH Trust, formerly at 112 Hampstead Road and now at 250 Euston Road, ref. NTH; details are available via Access to Archives (opens in new window)

Some relevant records are also held in London Metropolitan Archives, including records from 1897–1927 relating to its King Edward’s Fund applications, ref. A/KE/254/1; details are available online via Access to Archives (opens in new window)

This page last modified 13 April, 2011 by Deborah Colville


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