Victorian London - Health and Hygiene - Hospitals - Royal Free Hospital

ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL, Gray's Inn Road; was founded by Mr. Marsden, in ]828, and removed to its present commodious building in 1842; admits all patients without letters of recommendation, and is one of the most useful institutions in the Metropolis. It relieves about 45,000 persons yearly, though its income does not exceed 7000l.

Cruchley's London in 1865 : A Handbook for Strangers, 1865


ROYAL FREE HOSPITAL, Gray's-inn-road, affording free and instant relief to the destitute sick, was originally founded 1828, in Greville-street, Hatton-garden : in 1832 700 cholera patients were admitted here, when other hospitals were closed against them; a demonstration of the free principle which led to the removal of time Hospital, in 1843, to the present premises, formerly the barracks of the Light-Horse Volunteers. The establishment of this Hospital was prompted by its founder, Mr. Marsden, a surgeon, having seen in the winter of 1827 a wretched young woman lying on the steps of St. Andrew's Churchyard, Holborn-hill, after midnight, perishing through disease and famine: she was a stranger in London, without a friend, and died two days afterwards unrecognised! The "Sussex Ward" was built as a memorial of the Duke of Sussex, of whom here is a portrait-statue in a niche in the front.

John Timbs, Curiosities of London, 1867