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Addington Children's Hospital - KZN Children's Hospital
Addington, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal

People:

John Stockwin CLELAND: Design Architect
PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT: Architect

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Date:1931
Type:Hospital
Status:Extant


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29°51'52.72" S 31°02'32.54" E Alt: 8m
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Cumming-George 1933

The Children's Hospital, Durban, which was completed at an approximate cost of £44,000, is situated on the sea-front near the Addington Hospital, and is portion of a large comprehensive scheme. The building provides for the accommodation of 70 patients, and should the necessity arise later, the plans are so arranged that it will be possible to increase that number to 150.

The building, which is of brick plastered with stone dressings, reinforced concrete floors and tile roof, is planned round open courts, which, together with the numerous large windows capable of being thrown wide open, will allow the entrance of as much air as possible; while at either end of the main block on the sea-front, open-air wards complete with their own lavatories and drinking fountains, and connected by verandahs, house patients who require such conditions.

The main accommodation is furnished on each floor by two large wards of ten beds each and four single-bedded wards, the remaining beds being in the observation and wasting and dietetic wards.

There is a complete operating theatre suite which includes special anaesthetic and sterilizing rooms, two theatres, one of which is fitted with dark lighting apparatus for such operations as require these conditions, in addition, besides a room devoted to electrical treatment, x-ray, and electrically fitted bath, a milk laboratory is provided.

Another feature is the provision of a continuous flow bath. The hospital is practically self-contained, and is fitted with its own Casualty department, Dispensary, Kitchen, Scullery, Servery, Cold Room and Stores, R.M.'s quarters, etc., and embodies features only found in a few of the world's hospitals.

The wards are decorated with paintings illustrating fairy tales and nursery rhymes, leaded lights depicting animals and birds, are provided in some of the panes to ward windows. Two mosaic paned panels are let into the floors of open-air rooms, illustrating sea life, and all the main wards are fitted with wireless earphones. Every endeavour has been made in the planning of the hospital to combine a maximum of efficiency with beauty of design, and an atmosphere of cheerfulness.

[Cumming-George L, 1933. Architecture in South Africa - Volume One. Cape Town: The Speciality Press of S.A. Ltd. pp, 151-3.]

The relief panel above the entrance "SUFFER LITTLE CHILDREN TO COME UNTO ME" was designed by Mary STAINBANK for the Ceramic Studio.

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It opened in 1931 as a facility for all races, but racial tensions in the 1980s forced its closure.

With Durban and the surrounding province of KwaZulu-Natal extremely hard hit by HiV, AIDS and tuberculosis, local leaders embarked on a restoration and rebuild process, with the 1st stage of the hospital reopening in July 2013.

(KZN Children's Hospital)

All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

Writings about this entry

Cumming-George, L. 1933. Architecture in South Africa - Volume One. Cape Town: The Speciality Press of S.A. Ltd.. pg 151-153
Fisher, Roger & Clarke, Nicholas. 2014. Architectural Guide : South Africa. Berlin: DOM Publishers. pg 58

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