In honor of one of the Atlas Team’s imminent departure for parts Welsh in a few days, today’s Morbid Monday dredged up all sorts of gruesome Wales-related goodies. Between the black death & child labor in the mines, we found the story of the truly creepy North Wales Hospital, aka. Denbigh Asylum, once home to electro-convulsive therapy & non-voluntary lobotomy treatments, now in a state of picturesque doomy decay.
Photo by LulaTaHula
The asylum was built between 1844-1848, at the height of the Victorian lunatic asylum building craze spurred by the 1808 Asylum Act which proposed moving the mentally infirm into care facilities rather than workhouses. The Denbigh asylum was specifically constructed to serve Welsh-speaking lunatics locally so that they could be attended to in their native tongue rather than being sent to English asylums.
It closed relatively recently and in 2008 the empty building was featured in a not-loved-by-locals episode of “Most Haunted” (“sensationalist rubbish”), and then later that year it was consumed in flames and partially gutted. Now the historic building is facing an uncertain future, and sits on the buildings at risk register.
* Built in the north of Wales, Denbigh also produced the famed journalist/explorer/historic monument defacerand, later, inspiration for Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, Henry Morton Stanley and is home to the more ruined, slightly less creepy Denbigh Castle*
According to Wikipedians, the castle features “a heavily defended passageway that had murder-holes, portcullises in series, two wooden doors, and enfilading arrowslits.” We at Atlas Obscura stand by any attraction that features a good murder-hole. Wikipedia **See also: Dead Explorer Fights Knife Crime
Denbigh link fest:
More links from today’s doomy Welsh explorations:
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