Welcome to-aturnofthekey-Memories of the old  St.Georges and Coton Hill Hospitals-Stafford
A shared record of the Life and Times of these once-proud, old Hospitals. 25/02/2012

This Web – Site is Open To All who may have been involved with Providing and/or Accessing throughout the years, any of the facilities of
these two Old, Local Hospitals. This includes All grades of Ex-Staff, Volunteers, Ex-Patients and their Relatives. There also appears to be a
number of People from the Stafford Area and beyond, Young and Old, who have an interest in what these Old Places were really all about.

I hope this Site and it’s Contents are put together in as Sensitive a way as is possible – Please feel free to tell me if you think otherwise.

Many sincere thanks to all who have helped me with encouragement, advice, and their trust in me to share all of their donations of images, reminiscences, anecdotes, stories etc., towards this Collection of Memories, for everyone to see – I could not have done it without them.

It’s continued development depends  -  Very Much on You  -   through your Donations of  Images, Suggestions, Comments, Anecdotes etc.
All of these add extra layers to the  varied and vibrant record of these, our, old hospitals - So Please, Keep them Coming.
Explore the Site – Participate – Reminisce – Share Those Memories – Tell Others About It – Brian Simms.

I hope you Enjoy the Site,  But -  If You Notice Anything Untoward  – Please Let Me Know – Brian.


Some Recent Photos -  Identified – Temporarily by  Red - Frames - Across the Site

Uploaded -
See -       page

Hover over Photos for Donor ID, Info., etc.  -   Left Click to Enlarge

Copyright © to all Images is acknowledged as being retained by the Donor unless otherwise stated


Some of the More Recent Anecdotes

Science v Religious Beliefs” - A Classroom Experience by – Doug Endean


See “Anecdotes” Page for More of these – and – Please Send me Yours to share

List of  Current Donors

Peter Anthony-Anne Appleby-John Aris-Sue Astle-Kath Cox-Trisha Hayward-Tony Lakin
Chris Peet-Beryl Sandy-Roy Shirley-Bill Sim-Brian Simms-Ian Ward-Jeanette Watson
Mark Melvin-Kevin McConville-Phil Warelow-Eddy Hood-Mary Balahura-Geoff Dewsbury
Margaret Dooley-
Staffordshire Newsletter-Anonymous Donor-Dave Plant-David Johnson-Philip Locke

If I have omitted Your Name – Please  let me know and I will update the list -many thanks Brian.

For  Contact List, Donations, and Private Contact  About this Site - See  “Contact  Page”
For “Your Thoughts/Comments”  Please Use – “Comments Box” Below

115 thoughts on “Home”

  1. David Hill said:

    Good to see Martin Garvey’s comments of last December, and very impressed he can remember so many names! Although I left Stafford and St Georges over 30 years ago, like Martin I too drive past the site whenever in the area and soak up the memories of my time there in the mid to late 70′s.
    Best wishes

  2. So glad to be back home again following major lung surgery at North Staffs Hospital – Thanks to those who sent their best wishes at a time when I was most vulnerable (you know who you are) – I am recuperating nicely and will be in touch with you later.
    Many Thanks

  3. hey get well soon// what some folk will
    do for a couple 9f days in bed
    best wishes kath,and Alf

  4. Hey Kath n Alf – thanks for that. As for a couple of extra – pain free – days in bed . . . . . I Wish ! ! !

  5. Roy Shirley said:

    Sorry to hear you have been ill Brian, but I’m pleased you are now on the mend – Roy

  6. David T Johnson said:

    Hi Brian
    So pleased to hear you are out of hospital and I hope the operation was a success. Having met up with you again after over 45 years I do enjoy our Thursday evenings telephone chats. Get on your feet again soon, after all, you cannot expect Sheila to do the washing up AND take the dog for a walk.
    Kind Regards

  7. Brian said:

    Hey Roy

    Thanks for that – one step at a time for now. I have to say that there is No Joy in getting High on Morphine via the National Health ! !

  8. Hi David -
    you don’t really think Sheila will let me away with that do you ? Despite no uniform she’s behaving like just like an old Matron !
    Our chats often remind me of our Student days. All those once a week barnstorming, intense question and answer sessions at your house, mine or our old much missed friend Alan Astle. Great fun and all helped when it came to exam time.
    Speak Soon

  9. David T Johnson said:

    Hi Brian,
    I am so pleased the results of your biopsy were satisfactory. Now you can get on with your life with all that behind you. Do look after yourself. At our time of life health is very important. Love to Sheila. I will speak to you soon. Best Wishes David

  10. Doug Endean said:

    Hello Brian
    I was wandering the internet typing in names of old but good friends when I found the link to this site from a webpage that Phil Warelow’s name produced and spent almost all day yesterday viewing the comments and pictures. It was really good to see the names of many people I remembered from my time in the family home of St George’s. I have worked in a few place’s since then and oddly, if you research them all, you will find they have all closed and either been knocked down or are in the same state that St George’s has crumbled into. Could this me? Am I bad luck, or, was I that bloody good that so many people got the cure in my wake and the hospitals were no longer needed. I will leave that to the my readers to ponder whilst my wife administers my medication.
    Before I go further please tell me Brian, who are you? My first guess was that you were my old mechanic mate Brian Hartill but when I saw comments about him from someone reporting his heart attack a while ago I realised my first guess was wrong. That leaves me with Brian Simms (sorry but my memory recall does not compute, perhaps you were after my time at the home for hairy a***** attendants (well that’s what people called us) 1970 to 78. My final guess is Brian Adams, yes I can see this being something Brian would be excellent at, so let me know please as I would like to congratulate the right person for this site.
    OK, Hello everyone, I’m sure some of you will remember me, beard, long hair and generally a motorbike. Still have the beard, not the same one, the present one is mainly white. The hair, most of it is there but shorter and I seem to have grown taller as my scalp shows out of the top of my head. I have a monstrous bike that I recently restored, a Honda C90, and a handful of cars that keep me entertained. I’m very happily retired being extremely glad to be out of my last job which made me very ill, I think the term was “sick to death with it”. Too many changes too often to stop anyone actually achieving the goals which led the next minister for health to make another change as you were not achieving the goals, get my drift.
    Well to give you a break I will say no more at present (can’t stop when I get started) and look forward to visiting the site from time to time and reading comments from all those friend I remember. I do have some antidotes which I will post one day, must get on with the ironing now before I collect my wife from play group, no, no, she is there with our grandson who we have every Wednesday, or Fletcher Day as it is now called.

  11. Roy Shirley said:

    Like Doug Endean’s post, when I left St. Georges I moved to other hospitals that now are either housing estates or are about to be demolished, I don’t think it’s bad luck on my part just something some people call progress. Only the other day there was a discussion on Radio 4 about whether there should be asylums for certain sorts of people with mental health problems who find it too difficult to be totally cared for in the community.

  12. Brian said:

    Hi Doug,
    Good to hear that you are still around and that you have found the Site. Lots of people here you must have known – even if you can’t remember me yet – Enjoy !
    Brian Simms

  13. sick of reading about, and listening to the news about lack of psychiatric beds in the UK… after the way the old well functioning hospitals were closed… maybe we didn’t fight hard enough to stop the care in the community craze when it first started…..I remembera battle royal over the first mixed wardat St Georges IWas told Change my opinion or get out……now after fourty years we are toLD they don’t,t work and should,nt have been introduced…..Barr progress..rant over

  14. Roy Shirley said:

    I worked as a CPN for over 25 years and I agree community care is best, that’s why I worked in the community, but in my last year (2 years ago) the trust I worked for decided that it didn’t need hospital beds for acutely ill people and closed most of the ward beds. Not a large number, but some hospital beds are needed, for the few patients who cannot be treated in the acute phase of their illness in the community setting

  15. wilsend - Doug Endean said:

    Hi Brian and all
    Whoops I seem to have started a debate, didn’t mean too. Just a little thing that should be remembered is that one large institution still exists. Its full of male and female inmates who are generally deluded but only receive the sort of medication they get (free I understand) from the bar. They can be seen regularly ranting and raving at each other in a way that would normally be unacceptable behaviour elsewhere. Collectively they have formed sides and squabble all the time, they don’t achieve much but would like normal people to believe they do. If they were in the work force and on “performance related pay” they would loose out big time but as they are not they are to have their benefits increased by a large percentage this year compared with the normal person. Many seem to break the law but few end up in a secure institution and are forgive (by their pals) their sins. The institution will always be there no matter what and none of them will end up on the street being chased by their demons. Sad thing is we put them all in the institution believing their delusions of wealth and health for all. You can visit the institution on the banks of the River Themes in London on the opposite bank to the Big Wheel and next to Big Ben.
    That being over does anyone know the whereabouts of my old class mate Emile Martin, the Spaniard who was one of the trio that was Endean Bourke and Martin ?

  16. Margaret Bumford said:

    Lovely nostalgia and so much research but that’s you Brian a stickler to get things right must route out photos I had of the wards sorry to hear you have been I’ll hope yup are on the mend Margaret Angus

  17. Hey Marg,
    Great that you have found the Site. Lots of Memories here (mostly good times) – People and Place. Explore and Enjoy. I will be in touch shortly.

  18. Margaret Bumford said:

    Hi Brian had your email but I am still a novice at this still live in stafford hope to catch up on old times those were the good old days. Margaret x

  19. Brian said:

    Sad News
    – Have just heard, from her Daughter Ann, that Beryl Sandy has passed away. One of our old and much respected colleagues who thought of all her Patients as Our Folk.

    Details to be announced in local paper, and here, when available.

  20. Rlp Beryl. many happy memories of times gone by,condolences to her family

  21. David T Johnson said:

    RIP Beryl
    A great neighbour, friend and colleague.
    Our thoughts are with John, Ann and Rosie.
    David and Peter Johnson

  22. Phil Warelow said:

    Saddened to hear of Beryl’s passing. She was such a good lady.
    Also, sorry to hear you have been ill Brian. Get well soon.
    Good to hear from you Dougie Endean. We seemed to have lost touch.
    I presume you now live somewhere in England? I remember most of your group.
    I think you had Charlie Ristic and John Titley in your group.
    Regards Phil Warelow

    • Funeral arrangements for Beryl

    Stafford Crematorium – Friday 11th April – 3.30 pm.
    No Flowers – by Request – Donations if you wish – to West Midlands Air-Ambulance Service.

    Please pass on These Details if you can.

  23. Kevin McConville said:

    Good morning Brian,
    Thank you for letting me know about Beryl’s passing and the funeral arrangements. I plan to be there. She was a Ward Sister that I worked with and I have fond memories of her as being a very caring and professional nurse. Somebody that I admired.
    I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you Brian, on behalf of the many users of your site, for the hard work that you have done. You are keeping alive the cherished memories that I and many more people have of St Georges.
    Best wishes,

  24. Doug Endean said:

    Hi Brian and All
    Like others I was sorry to hear about Beryl and glad to see that many are there to support her family at this time.
    On a more positive note, Hi Phil. Many moons have passed since we last met and many miles traveled. Yep in England, sunny Devon in fact is where I rest my hat. Been here since 1986 with retirement taking place in 2008, or was it 2009. Germaine retired three weeks ago and I’m still putting her through her induction training. The Dyson vacuumed cleaner is proving her most difficult thing to grasp bit with time and patients she will be as proficient as I have become with it.
    I have spent my time renovating our bungalow, keeping an eye on a holiday let we have and restoring MGB’s. Got two in the garage with one being up for sale if none is interested. It’s a good one so the firsts 6.5k to cross my palm secures it’s purchase.
    How’s Ian these days? Not heard for him for a long time either. I’m happy for Brian to give you my email if you want to send the odd email to catch up.
    All the best

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