Religion was a major way of life for the Victorians, and hospital and asylum design
reflected their beliefs with large, purpose built Chapels a compulsory
part of the complex.
Their placement was always a contentious subject; some architects elected to put them in
the grounds, whilst others put them in the main complex.
Designed to hold half the asylumís patients at one time, the flint chapel of this corridor
asylum was firmly placed right in the centre of the complex. With its stonework and additional
carvings and embellishments, it was a unique space within the buildings. However, when the hospital
expanded, it became redundant, replaced with a larger self contained building. At later points
in the hospitalís lifetime, additional chapels were built for different faiths, but none
matched the opulence of this original Victorian designs.
At Severalls, the situation was reversed, with the main Chapel built in the grounds
(complete with stained glass windows including a doctor, nurse and patient). As the hospital gradually
wound down in the 1970s and 1980s, this original Chapel was closed, and a room in the
main buildings was used for worship.