Hurdsfield House Red Cross Hospital was an auxiliary hospital in Macclesfield, set up in early 1915 by the Cheshire Branch of the British Red Cross Society.
Hurdsfield House was built prior to 1850 and was originally the home of John Brocklehurst, a former MP for Macclesfield. Bagshaw’s 1850 Directory of Cheshire, describes it as
“a handsome and spacious mansion on the Hurdsfield Road, a short distance from the Church, beautified by shrubberies and park-like grounds“
A ‘to let’ advertisement in the Manchester Courier of December 1903 states:
“Superior Residence… situate in well-wooded park, five minutes from station; contains large dining and drawing-rooms, breakfast-room, parlour, nursery, billiard-room, &c.; eleven bedrooms, bathroom, domestic offices; laundry, dairy, stables, coachhouse, coachman’s house, lodge and gardens; land up to 30 acres”
The property was unoccupied in 1914, and was loaned to the Red Cross for use as a hospital by the owner, William Brocklehurst Brocklehurst, the MP for Macclesfield from 1910 to 1918.
The Macclesfield Courier of 13th March 1915 reports:
“The Hurdsfield House Hospital has now 16 beds fully equipped for wounded soldiers and sailors. Colonel Brocklehurst has kindly lent the house for the purpose and numerous ladies and gentlemen in Macclesfield and the neighbourhood have lent the equipment, and most generously subscribed the necessary funds.
The Medical Officer is Dr. Marshall, who is giving his services, and Dr. J. B. Hughes has consented to act with him should he require any assistance. Sister Foxe, who has had considerable experience in military hospitals since the commencement of the war, has undertaken the duties of Sister-in-Charge, and has control of the nursing arrangements: she will be assisted by Mrs. Laird and Mrs. Sumner. The remainder of the staff have been appointed from the members of the 6th and 8th detachments of the Cheshire Branch of the British Red Cross Society, who have volunteered their services.”
Today the property has been converted into apartments and is known as ‘Brocklehurst Manor’. No longer set within spacious gardens and surrounded by fields, it is now in the middle of the former Hurdsfield council house estate, which was built after the end of World War One.
Listed below are people who have been researched, who are known to have worked or been treated at Hurdsfield House Red Cross Hospital: