Saturday, 2 July 2011

Walk like a Zombie

Well not quite Halloween yet but the Joburg Photowalkers visited the old Johannesburg General Hospital in Hillbrow near Constitution Hill. Parts of this historic hospital date back to 1889 and it is in desperate need of restoration. It was great doing a photowalk through this abandoned hospital and seeing the sterling efforts made by a few to try restore the grand buildings back to its original state. Some buildings are already been hijacked by squatters.

The Nuns of Bordeaux even had a chapel built on the grounds, although I could not see a date, I am sure it dates to 1886 when the parts of Catholic Natal diocese moved up to Johannesburg with the gold rush. From what I can find on the internet, it seems that the nuns also served as the nurses of the hospital. "The Sisters of Hope, the nursing branch of the Holy Family of Sisters of Bordeaux, took charge of the Johannesburg Hospital; the Marist Brothers opened a school for boys; the Holy Family Sisters established a convent school in End Street. The Sisters of Hope remained in Johannesburg thoughout the Anglo-Boer War, looking after wounded soldiers from both armies." We managed to get into the small plain chapel only to find dusty rows of pews and a small wooden altar with no crucifix.

The once beautiful superintendent's home is now a derelict double story house that is just about to fall apart. The rest of the buildings just need money to restore them. Sorry to say no zombies found at the morgue although I must have been walking like one all medicated up, so much so that I even damaged my camera on one of the scaffoldings.

1 comment:

Heather said...

Wow, that was fast!

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