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The building of the new hospital

The campaign for a new hospital

In 1871 Dr AL Kelly stated that a new hospital was necessary “…not only on account of the increase in inhabitants, but more particularly Manufactories and their attendant diseases and accidents”.

By 1878 the Glasgow Southern Medical Society had set up a committee led by Dr Ebenezer Duncan. They started to lobby influential people.

In 1881 a broader committee, made up of doctors and community leaders, was set up to build the hospital.

The first steps

Glasgow Council sold the land at a reduced rate. The committee chose the Glasgow firm of Campbell Douglas and Sellars as the architects.

When Robert Couper of Millholm died, leaving around £45,000 for the new hospital. Unfortunately there were complications winding up his estate.

Fundraising went slowly until February 1887, when Queen Victoria gave her backing. With royal approval fundraising became easier.

Mrs Couper to the rescue

At the end of 1887 Mrs Couper contacted the committee. Her husband’s estate was still not settled, but she wanted to give £10,000.

For this a special act of Parliament was necessary. The Act was passed in June 1888 and building started in July

There was enough money for one ward and essential facilities.

The Victoria Infirmary was opened on 14th February 1890 by the Duke of Argyll.


Last Updated: 17 January 2018