Afflicted: 11 Abandoned UK Asylums “Open” for Exploration

Featured — By Rachel Greenberg on February 18, 2011 at 6:00 am

5. Whittingham Asylum – Lancashire

Image: The Boatman/Flickr

Constructed in 1869, Whittingham was the largest asylum in Britain. At one point, this massive complex held over 3,500 patients. A hospital this size, and this remote, needed two farms, a post office, a railway, a church, private butchers, and even its own brewery to survive and maintain self sufficiency. It was taken over both in WWI and WWII but continued operating as a hospital until it was abandoned in 1995.

Image: Critical Mass./Flickr

Image: Critical Mass./Flickr


Rumors of patient abuse swirled around Whittingham, but the asylum did leave its mark for the better on the medical community. Electroencephalography (EEGs) , or the process of recording a brain’s waves through sensors placed on the skull, was pioneered on the patients at Whittingham in an attempt to better understand mental illness.

Tags: abandoned, asylums, hospital, London, UK, urban exploration, urban explorers, Wales


  • C says:

    Definitely captured a time in history.

    A bit eerie. I often wonder how another feels capturing the energy from such photos.

  • Chris says:

    Spooky photo’s in beautiful buildings.
    Such a shame that the buildings are left to rot.
    The Deva (chester) building i have first hand knowledge of, The brickwork /masonary is beautiful.
    But it was a damn cold building

  • Static says:

    I was committed once. But they couldn’t contain me because I am a Vatican assassin…a rock star from Mars. I’m shootin’ poetry from my fingertips over here, and I’m not bothering to ask questions later. That’s what happens when you have tiger’s blood and you snort a big ol’ pile of Charlie Sheen.

    btw, thanks for the honorable mention in your Pirates vs. Ninjas article! 8D


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