warley hospital | the essex county lunatic asylum
Last update: 23|08|10
Warley Hospital

general orientation

General view of the canteen

The canteen from the 1853 plan (coloured)

detailed pictures

The ground floor of the Chapel was originally the asylumís hall, but like the Chapel above, was found to be too small and too expensive to extend. A new hall was built within the existing cloisters and the original hall was pushed into use as an epileptic ward until the 1950s when it was converted into the staff cafeteria.

It shared none of the architectural flourishes of the upper floor and was otherwise quite a plain space.

canteen: view west
The staff cafeteria was tidy and empty like the rest of the buildings. The main dining area (and what was presumably the main part of the hall) followed the same lines as the nave above it. The only architectural flourish was the beamed ceiling.

The western windows were boarded up. This gave the space a dingy and dark ambience.

canteen: view south-west
A serving hatch occupied the southern part of the cafeteria. The roomís depth matched the depth of an aisle above.

canteen: view south
The crest above bore the arms of Warley Hospital: it featured a gold serpent coiled around a green shaft with the backdrop of the three swords of the Essex coat of arms.

canteen: view east
The eastern windows werenít boarded and were the only source of light in the room. The two doors into the male and female sides of the asylum were still in their original places.

canteen: view north-east
A matching northern alcove was positioned below the northern aisle above. It was completely empty but had probably been used for dining.

canteen: view north
A safe and lone telephone were the only objects left in a small storeroom. The safe was locked, but was probably empty.

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