John Passmore Edwards


Staplehurst Convalescent Home



The Metropolitan Hospital had been left a sum of £10,000 to be used "exclusively to maintain good Samaritan Societies or Convalescent Homes. Since the Hospital did not, at that time, have an associated Convelescent Home it was decided that they should ask Passmore Edwards to provide one. Passmore Edwards readily agreed but after delays in finding a suitable site he told the Hopsital that if they could not agree on a site then he would have to withdraw his offer. Mr T S Cornwallis offered a suitable site of 35 acres at Cranbrook, near Staplehurst. Charles Grieve was appointed as architect and the Foundation Stone was laid, by Mrs Cornwallis on 14 October 1896.

At the accompanying ceremony, Lord Battersea, the Treasurer of the Hospital said that The Metropolitan Hospital served an area occupied by the poorest of London's residents. Sailors, either injured in the Docks or returning home from foreign shores, went to the Hospital for medical help. He hoped that the residents of Staplehurst would take an active interest in these patients when they came down to the Home from the hospital. A postcard showing the Cranbrook Home in 1915
The Home was opened in July 1897 by Princess Louise who travelled by special train to Staplehurst Station.
Whislt many local people were employed at the Home it does not appear that they took Lord Battersee's plea to heart as there was concern that the patients from London would bring with them diseases that would affect the local population. At around the turn of the centuary the London County Council converted the Home for the use as a convalescent home for children recovering from TB.
In the 1940's the Home was used as a remand home for errant boys.
In the early 1980's the Home was sold and converted into a residential home for the elderly.
Today the home is divided into individual private residences.
Charles Grieve
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Acknowledgement of contributions and  copyright
© Dean Evans 2004
January 5, 2007
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