West Middlesex University Hospital turned 100 years old in 2020 and CW+ concluded its series of centenary celebrations by installing a brand new, permanent Heritage Exhibition. The unique exhibition, which showcases the hospital’s rich history of over 100 years, was officially opened yesterday by Mayor of Hounslow Councillor Raghwinder Siddhu at a showcase event to shine a light on those who make West Middlesex such a special place, both past and present. The exhibition was kindly supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
In attendance were former and current long-serving members of staff, all of whom were involved in the curation of the exhibition and who make up the community that has hugely contributed to the hospital’s astounding history and its role as the heart of the local area.
Staff from across the hospital joined the celebrations where they were given a tour of the exhibition and also browsed some of the incredible archive materials including newspaper cuttings, old photographs and programmes of events from the hospital dating back to the early 1900s. The exhibition will remain a permanent feature in the hospital’s entrance, showcasing the key moments of West Middlesex Hospital’s past and future plans.
Part of the exhibition includes work from illustrator and reportage artist, Emily Thomas, who worked with CW+ as an artist in residence at West Middlesex where she observed the daily workings of the hospital, from friendly conversations to busy and calm moments. Emily then produced a collection of illustrations that capture and celebrate the diverse workforce and community spirit of staff.
Mayor of Hounslow Councillor Raghwinder Siddhu, who joined the celebrations, commented: “It was an absolute pleasure to join the West Middlesex centenary celebrations and to see hospital staff come together for such a momentous occasion. The hospital has such a rich and important history, and it was fantastic to see this so uniquely showcased in the new Heritage Exhibition. West Mid has been a fundamental part of the community, along with its invaluable staff, for over 100 years and it will continue to be somewhere that residents speak highly of for many more. The new Heritage Exhibition looks truly wonderful, and I was delighted to be a part of such an incredible event for a hospital with such a remarkable history.”
Lesley Watts, Chief Executive Officer at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, said: “It has been wonderful to celebrate over 100 years of West Middlesex University Hospital alongside past and current staff. After hearing stories from people who have been so positively impacted by the hospital and seeing its history displayed through the extraordinary Heritage Exhibition, it is clear that West Middlesex is truly treasured by its community. We are thrilled that the exhibition will become a permanent feature, so that we can proudly display our hospital’s fascinating past and what makes it such a special place for patients, visitors and staff.”
Chris Chaney, Chief Executive Officer at CW+, also commented: “Our hospital’s incredible history is really important to us, so we are thrilled to have created this new permanent exhibition which celebrates such an exceptional history spanning over 100 years. Marking this historic milestone and highlighting our wonderful past and current staff with such a special exhibition has been truly memorable and it has been delightful to hear from people who have connections to the hospital and its history in so many different ways. We hope that our patients, visitors and staff enjoy the exhibition and learning about our important history.”
For more information on the Heritage Exhibition visit www.cwplus.org.uk/our-story/