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Hellingly Mental Asylum
History / Background
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History / Background
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Looking backward...


In 1894 the council of East Sussex scouted various sites with a view to building a new Lunatic asylum,a site at the village of Hellingly was chosen for its hilltop location- this was common practise at the time as it was believed that commanding views over pleasant landscapes had a theraputic quality that would speed up recovery.
The architect G.T Hine was appointed to design the building as he was greatly respected in his field,he would go on to design a number of asylums in the uk and Hellingly was a typical example of his craft,from the outet it was decided that the hospital would be largely self sufficient with most needs catered for on site.
For a brief time it had its own railway station which was used to bring in visitors and also supplies to the complex,this service ceased in the 1950's and the nearby Hellingly station is now a private house .The first patients where admited in 1903 and for many years provided inovative treatment for those with mental disorders,that was untill the 1990's when the government decided to close the majority of the aslylums in the Britain and instigate the care in the comunity programme.Now Hellingly is slowly decaying and has been the target of vandals on more than one occasion ,a few buildings remain in use to cater for the criminally insane but the future of the rest of the complex is uncertain.


Hellingly asylumm is a fairly recent addition to U.E circles,unlike Cane Hill its not so well documented so the chance to visit and document the site was to good to miss.