Birmingham Children's Hospital - A Birmingham Gem!

Birmingham Children's Hospital has been situated on Steelhouse Lane since 1998 in a building that was formerly the Birmingham General Hospital.


Birmingham Children's Hospital has been at the Steelhouse Lane site since 1998. It was formerly the Birmingham General Hospital. Which was opened in 1897. The red brick building was designed by William Henman.

Birmingham Children's Hospital on Steelhouse Lane (February 2021). Photography by Daniel Sturley

 

History of the Birmingham General Hospital

The General Hospital originally opened on a site on Summer Lane in 1779, then called Hospital Street. It was at that site until 1897. That site was later where Centro House was built, at 16 Summer Lane. It is now the Headquarters for Transport for West Midlands. A blue plaque from the Birmingham Civic Society marks where the old hospital used to be.

Birmingham General Hospital

Birmingham General Hospital blue plaque at 16 Summer Lane (January 2012). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

The hospital moved to Steelhouse Lane in 1897, on a site formerly occupied by almshouses from Lench's Trust. The architect of the red brick building was William Henman. Neville Chamberlain later became an Official Visitor and later a director of the hospital. He advocated the building of a larger hospital, although this didn't happen until 1934. The hospital became part of the new National Health Service in 1948. Nurses were trained here until 1964 (when training new nurses moved to the old Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Edgbaston). When the Birmingham Pub Bombings took place in November 1974, victims were taken either to the General Hospital or the Accident Hospital. The Birmingham General Hospital closed for good in the mid 1990s. After it closed, it was converted into the Birmingham Children's Hospital, which moved here in 1998 (from Ladywood Middleway).

Birmingham General Hospital

The former Birmingham General Hospital from Steelhouse Lane (November 2009). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

History of the Birmingham Children's Hospital

The hospital was established as the Birmingham and Midland Free Hospital for Sick Children at 138 to 139 Steelhouse Lane in 1862. They moved to a new site on Ladywood Middleway in 1917. The Birmingham Children's Hospital in Ladywood was built from 1910 to 1919, the architect was Frederick William Martin. The site was later redeveloped into Broadway Plaza which opened in 2003 (retaining the hospitals facade).

Broadway Plaza

Facade of the former Birmingham Children's Hospital on Ladywood Middleway at Broadway Plaza (December 2013). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

They moved back to Steelhouse Lane in October 1998, in the building that had formerly housed the Birmingham General Hospital. At the time it was named the Diana, Princess of Wales Birmingham Children's Hospital. The Queen officially opened the new Children's Hospital. A new extension opened in 2007 by RPS Group was opened (near St Chad's Queensway). The Teenage Cancer Trust building was built during 2009 and opened in 2010 (close to Steelhouse Lane and James Watt Queensway). There is a helipad near James Watt Queensway which is used by the Midlands Air Ambulance (and other air ambulance services).

Birmingham Children's Hospital

Midlands Air Ambulance lands near Birmingham Children's Hospital (May 2011). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Steelhouse Lane

The Birmingham General Hospital of 1897, was converted into the new Birmingham Children's Hospital from 1995 to 1998. A new main entrance was built in the late 1990s. Initially named after the late Diana, Princess of Wales, this name was quietly dropped in the early 2000s to go back to just Birmingham Children's Hospital. The building was granted a Grade II listed status in 2019 by Historic England, although Birmingham City Council had given it a Grade A listing status decades before that.

Birmingham Children's Hospital

Main entrance to Birmingham Children's Hospital on Steelhouse Lane (April 2011). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

St Chad's Queensway

This modern extension to Birmingham Children's Hospital was built in 2007 and is near the end of St Chad's Queensway, close to Lancaster Circus. It was created for the burns unit. There is also a neonatal ward, a burns operating theatre and additional classrooms for the Education Centre.

Birmingham Children's Hospital

Modern extension to Birmingham Children's Hospital on St Chad's Queensway (September 2009). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

 

Teenage Cancer Trust

The Teenage Cancer Trust building was built at the Birmingham Children's Hospital during 2009, it opened in 2010. Near the end of Steelhouse Lane and close to James Watt Queensway.

Teenage Cancer Trust

Teenage Cancer Trust at Birmingham Children's Hospital (January 2010). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Lancaster Circus Queensway

This modern extension to Birmingham Children's Hospital was built near Lancaster Circus between 2011 and 2012.

Birmingham Children's Hospital

Modern extension to Birmingham Children's Hospital near Lancaster Circus Queensway (January 2012). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

The Big Hoot Birmingham 2015

A trail of painted owls was around Birmingham during the summer of 2015, for around 10 weeks. Before being sold at an auction for the Birmingham Children's Hospital Charity.

There was one owl outside of the hospital that is still there today.

Florence Nightin'owl was by the artist Deven Bhurke. The sponsor was Birmingham Children's Hospital.

The Big Hoot Birmingham Children's Hospital

Florence Nightin'owl (by artist Deven Bhurke) outside of Birmingham Children's Hospital on Steelhouse Lane (July 2015). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

The Big Sleuth Birmingham 2017

A trail of painted bears was around Birmingham and the West Midlands during the summer of 2017, for around 10 weeks. Before being sold at an auction for the Birmingham Children's Hospital Charity.

The existing owl from two years before was joined by one bear, but years later was replaced by another bear.

Dr Bear Brawn was by the artist: Deven Bhurke. The sponsor was Birmingham Children's Hospital.

The Big Sleuth Birmingham Children's Hospital

Dr Bear Brawn (by artist Deven Bhurke) outside of Birmingham Children's Hospital on Steelhouse Lane (July 2017). Photography by Elliott Brown

Project dates

27 Feb 2021 - On-going

Passions

History & heritage, Health & wellbeing, Care for the vulnerable
Modern Architecture, Classic Architecture

Contact

(for further information)

Jonathan Bostock

0121 410 5520
jonathan.bostock@ freetimepays.com