We celebrated the conclusion of West Middlesex University Hospital’s centenary year with a church service in Isleworth and a party at the hospital to honour its 100th birthday.
West Middlesex University Hospital – part of Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – has played a critical role in London’s response to the pandemic. The past 18 months have not only highlighted the unique community spirit surrounding the hospital by triggering a local outpouring of donations and support; the pandemic has also catalysed an acceleration in innovation and research, with West Middlesex’s staff leading on a number of initiatives to support patients to stay well and reduce the need for hospital visits with remote monitoring solutions.
The Trust is investing heavily in ‘West Mid’ hospital as a centre of excellence and as an anchor site for the whole community. Thanks to the largest capital investment ever made at the Trust, extensive developments are now due to commence onsite at West Middlesex to create a new state-of-the-art Ambulatory Diagnostic Centre, including transformative renal, oncology and haematology care.
“The impact of West Middlesex as a leading London site for caring for COVID-19 patients cannot be understated,” says Lesley Watts, Chief Executive at the Trust. “We are so proud of everything our staff have achieved, and know that the creation of the new Ambulatory Diagnostic Centre (ADC) will expand and improve our existing clinical services as well as free up space in the main hospital building to enable the future development of the West Middlesex site.
“This is a hugely exciting time for West Middlesex Hospital. The ADC, along with plans to develop the whole hospital into a community healthcare hub, will mean enhanced healthcare and community facilities as well as accommodation to meet the growing and changing healthcare requirements of local people. It will cement the hospital’s role at the heart of the community, delivering the best possible patient care.”
The Trust’s official charity, CW+ has been celebrating 100 years of West Middlesex over this centenary year, highlighting elements of the hospital’s rich history from its origins as the Brentford Workhouse to its contributions during both World Wars, when it looked after the wounded and soldiers as well as patients evacuated from central London in the second World War. The hospital buildings have a well-embedded history, including Queen Mary’s Maternity Unit, which was opened by Queen Mary in 1932, and still has its original façade. Also, the hospital has strong ties to Norway through Norwegian sailors being invited to take refuge in the hospital during the second World War as well as extensive connections to the local community across Hounslow and Twickenham.
Thanks to funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, CW+ is creating a digital and onsite exhibition, showcasing West Middlesex’s remarkable history. The physical exhibit is due to be installed later this year. Both online and in-person heritage exhibitions will feature photos, written materials, and other artefacts, many of which were archived until now.
“Throughout the pandemic, our staff at West Middlesex have been working hard to care for our communities affected by COVID-19,” says Mark Titcomb, Hospital Director at West Middlesex. “Many of our staff have worked at the hospital their entire career and have followed in the footsteps of generations before them or have moved to the UK to join via international recruitment drives. We look forward to sharing their stories about what makes ‘West Mid’ such a special place.”