Author Topic: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.  (Read 1315 times)

Offline MartinR

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #35 on: March 11, 2021, 11:16:14 AM »
According to the sign in the High Street (at 51.3831691 N 0.517087 E) the boundary passed to the east of St. Bart's chapel.  The Orchard Garden restaurant is number 2 High Street, so the numbering restarts there.

Online Dave Smith

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #34 on: March 11, 2021, 11:02:01 AM »
Hi Natasha. I was always under the impression that St. Bart's was in Chatham but I notice in their brochure that the developers refer to it as Rochester- a more prestigious address? However, in the small print it says, on the border of Rochester; very subtle! Sorry that I don't have any stories but my Grandfather, a lifelong Royal Engineer- ex Crewe Works, Engine Apprentice, was admitted there when it was the Medway Workhouse in 1931, although it then became the Asylum. Later he was transferred to Barming Hospital in Maidstone, ( built as an asylum, hence the name) where he died in 1937; cause of death, nowadays it would be called Parkinson's. So, like so many inmates of Asylums in the past, you didn't have to be a lunatic as such. Incidentally, you mention that this is part of the High Street Heritage project. My father was an apprentice Fitter & Turner to a firm of Artesian Well Borers in the High Street at the beginning of the 20th Century.   

Offline Natasha Steer

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #33 on: March 09, 2021, 12:00:44 PM »
Hi everyone! I have been working with George from Future Chatham about St Bartholomew's Hospital as part of a High Street Heritage Action Zone micro grant we were awarded. We spent sometime collecting stories about the hospital and speaking to Medway residents about their experiences of living and working there. You can see our videos that we recorded here - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIWSGc3yAVqsRRO8hUgSkjw We realise not all our facts are spot on as we are learning as we go. We have found Greenwoods and Dr Stratton's notes very useful! We would like to collect as much info as we can for Medway Archives. Please if you have photos or stories that you are willing to share for Medway Archives please let me know as we want to make sure the history of the hospital is not lost with the redevelopment into luxury flats. You can see more about the redevelopment here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uBsyCLXs0ufboPn3W41rUyDcEV2KgGgA/view?usp=sharing

Offline Smiffy

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #32 on: July 27, 2020, 10:41:13 PM »
I have one of the Railway saloon which I believe is his as well. Also very naive but as you say there may be no other visual record of many of these places.

As an aside, the building on the other side of the steps - William Edmead's - is listed as an Orange Merchant.

Offline CAT

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #31 on: July 27, 2020, 01:40:20 PM »
Naive, but still very informative. Sometimes these simple drawings can be the only surviving view of a building, or street scene, to survive if no such comparable 19th - early twentieth century photographic view of professional engraving is available.

Offline dingo4638

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #30 on: July 27, 2020, 10:12:15 AM »
The Victory pub stood to the left of the chapel steps on the High Street. This is one of Edwin Harris' rather naive drawings.

Offline Smiffy

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #29 on: October 25, 2019, 05:55:36 PM »
Interesting to compare the drawings with this map from the 1860's. As you can see the chapel was almost completely surrounded by other buildings, the main access being via Chapel lane and the Chapel steps in the High street.

Offline MartinR

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #28 on: October 25, 2019, 12:22:52 PM »
I've edited my previous to emphasis that the first two steps relate to the founding of the hospitals, not the chapels.

Offline CAT

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #27 on: October 25, 2019, 12:18:20 PM »
I can agree with the general assumed timeline you put forward, but you might have to exclude the apse at Harbledown as there is no firm evidence that the earliest constructional phase is directly associated with Lanfranc, though he is noted as being the hospitals founder. As you say, there would almost certainly have been timber structures on the site first with masonry building following, but how far following. Why would Lanfranc instigate the building of a square ended chancel in the earliest phase of St Gregory's Priory, Northgate, Canterbury and with no sign of an apse at St john's Hospital Chapel, Canterbury (though the present chapel is a later reduction and modification of the earlier structure)? I wonder if the apse at Harbledown is post Lanfranc, say Archbishop Anselm? Unfortunately, only limited research, and observations have been undertaken at Harbledown to be able to clarify this point further.

Offline MartinR

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #26 on: October 25, 2019, 10:45:01 AM »
Actually this is all starting to hang together.  You state: "A revival of the eastern apse, ... appears to have been favoured in the parish church from about c.1100 - 1125.  It is worth bearing in mind that St Bart's chapel was not a parish church, but a private chapel for a hospital.  Greenwood says that the chapel was first built in Gundulf's time and completed by between 1115 and 1124 by Hugh de Trottescliffe after Gundulf.  Note that this is completion, not commencement.  The dating of C11 for the apse by Greenwood indicates a TAQ of 1100.  The Elliston-Erwood (1934) reference is only a single sentence: "A very interesting though much restored example of a mediaeval spital of the twelfth century with its apsidal termination still standing".  Interestingly, the next entry is for Harbledown Hospital where, although subsequently destroyed, there was an apse with a foundation date of 1084.  In summary:
  • Greenwood: apse TAQ 1100.
  • Greenwood: church complete 1115-1124
  • Apse revival:  c.1100 - 1125
  • Elliston-Erwood: TPQ 1101
Assuming that (1) and (4) are both ridiculously precise we have the following putative narrative:
  • 1070 Lanfranc founds Harbledown hospital
  • 1078 Gundulf founds St. Bart's hospital
  • 1084 Work starts on the Harbledown chapel.  At some point it is decided to use an apse which is just coming into fashion.  From whence does the fashion come?  France?
  • Around 1100 work starts on St. Bart's chapel.  The latest new style (as at Harbledown) is used.  Building starts from the East end.
  • 1115-1124 St. Bart's chapel complete in its original form.
I must emphasize that this narrative is highly speculative and unsourced.  For both hospitals an earlier chapel might have existed, possibly wooden, but the building of the stone chapels has erased any trace thereof.
So to return to Greenwood's speculation that St. Bart's may be the earliest surviving example of a Norman Apse.  I think that with the words "may be" it is a reasonable statement.

Offline CAT

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #25 on: October 25, 2019, 09:16:50 AM »
I stand corrected MartinR, you are correct with the reference; I was following something else that Aymer Valence had written and crossed it over by mistake.

Either way, even at the time of F. C. Elliston-Erwood's article on 'The Apse in Kentish Church Architecture' (Arch. Cant. Vol.43, 1931), the remains at St Bart's, Chatham was recognised as being of twelfth-century and not earlier. It seems that the main reasoning for the dating of the St Bart's apse by Greenwood is the zig-zag decoration of one of the window heads, which must be the one in the left of the two late eighteenth-century drawings of the St Bart's apse? If this is the decorated window, with Greenwood's suggestive date, this would lead Historic England to use this a cited dating criteria for the construction of the apse?

Unfortunately, the adjacent excavation failed to clarify the date of the apse further, which means that regional trends, and comparisons have to be relied upon. As I mentioned earlier, the early Norman church buildings were not big on constructing curving apsidal east ends at a parish church level, so opted for the square ends instead. 

Offline MartinR

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #24 on: October 24, 2019, 06:35:50 PM »
If you look back at my post of October 17, 2019, 10:05:25 AM, you'll notice that I emphasised the word "may".  In the official listing English Heritage states:
Quote
apse has a half conical roof with 3 round-arched C11 windows with incised zig-zag decoration, and taller chancel gable
The listing description quotes "London: 1976-: 202; Greenwood EJ: The Hospital of St Bartholomew Rochester: Rochester: 1962-)" as its source.

Turning now to the documents you cited.  Are you certain Aymer Valance is the source?  Elliston-Erwood FSA, Frank Charles: "Plans of, and Brief Architectural Notes on, Kent Churches", Part II in Archaeologica Cantiana, volume xl (1947) p 16 has exactly the same text, not just the words but typographically identical, even to the extent of the slight distortion on line 5.  Page 17 has the illustration you reproduce.  https://www.kentarchaeology.org.uk/arch-cant/vol/60/plans-and-brief-architectural-notes-kent-churches-part-ii
Also in Arch. Cant. is a 1782 plan from Thorpe's Registrum Roffense see https://www.kentarchaeology.org.uk/arch-cant/vol/98/report-excavation-grounds-st-bartholomews-chapel-chatham.

Offline CAT

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #23 on: October 24, 2019, 03:27:33 PM »
Always worth airing caution MartinR with the accrediting foundation dates with actual structures, which is a common pitfall from the past. A foundation document does not necessarily relate to the buildings on the site. I include an inferred plan of the hospital chapel and accompanying text by Aymer Valence (a respective church authority of his time), both of which suggest the chapel, with its apsidal east end is of early twelfth-century and not late eleventh-century as a foundation document might imply.

Apart from the larger religious establishments (cathedrals and priories), it is thought that the early church builders following the Norman conquest preferred the square east end. A revival of the eastern apse, unless it was already in place prior to the Norman conquest, appears to have been favoured in the parish church from about c.1100 - 1125. Archbishop Lanfranc (first Norman archbishop) certainly didn't favour the apse in the parish church, all of which can be roughly dated to his term possess square east ends. The curving apse subsequently went out of fashion after c.1150 with numerous 'apses' being removed and squared off, these were subsequently extended in the following years. 

Offline snodlandmalc

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #22 on: October 24, 2019, 01:55:21 PM »
Interesting to see a picture of the children's ward,although it does still send a shiver down my spine ! I was in there about 1958/59.I was only about 4,so don't remember to much detail of it.I recall it as being dark and dingy,so I think it was on a lower level.

Offline Smiffy

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Re: St Barts Hospital. Rochester.
« Reply #21 on: October 24, 2019, 12:07:47 AM »
If I remember rightly this was discussed on the old forum and confirmed as Lloyds paper mill.