Nick Black

Author of The Honourable Doctor


During an extraordinary forty years, this small area of London attracted reformers who changed health care in fundamental ways that shape today’s services. Prior to that time, the only health care provided here was the 18th century Foundling Hospital, one the most magnificent buildings in London of which only the entrance and childrens’ playsheds can be seen today. On this walk you will see the first hospital for children in England, the only hospital for Italians, the first hospital established by nurses, the first hospital for those paralysed and epileptic, and the medical school created by and for women who were otherwise excluded from such a career. This was an area where several types of patients who were previously ignored finally were recognised and where new opportunities for staff were initiated. While Bloomsbury is rightly recognised as the home of radical changes in literature, art and penal reform, it was also a cradle of reform for health care.