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Fusehill Military Hospital in the Great War - The Wartime Memories Project -

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Fusehill Military Hospital

   Fusehill Millitary Hospital was located in the buildings of the Fusehill workhouse in Fusehill Street, Carlisle. The hospital opened in April 1917 with 400 beds, the nearby buildings of Brook Street and Newtown Schools were also requisitioned for use as hospital wards, increasing capacity to 680 and later to 861. By the time the hospital closed in June 1919, 9,809 patients had been treated there. The building later became the City General Hospital, then St Martinís College and today is part of the University of Cumbria.

22nd May 1915 Rail disaster at Quintinshill  The worst rail disaster in British history occurred on the 22nd of May 1915 when three trains were involved in a collision outside the Quintsill signal box near Gretna Green, Dumfriesshire, Scotland. Over 200 people died, most being soldiers from the 1/7th Battalion, Royal Scots who were travelling from Larbert to Liverpool to embark for Gallipoli.

The first train hit a stationary train waiting on a passing loop, due to several signalmen forgetting the train was there waiting. A minute after the first train hit a second train, a northbound express sleeper train, struck the wreckage on the tracks, igniting gas lighting system in the troop train. The fire engulfed five trains, killing 215 soldiers, nine passengers and three railway employees. There were four other victims, that many thought were children, but they could not be identified due to the burns. The last survivor of the wreck, Michael Simkins, told The Guardian in 2001 that an officer went about the scene shooting men trapped in the burning wreckage. 'That was true. I saw that. He was a Scottish gentleman, eventually a millionaire. But he had to ... And there were one or two other survivors who made themselves scarce'.

Many of those injured were taken to Carlisle, and were treated at the Carlisle Infirmary, Murrell Hill House, Fusehill, and Chadwick Hospitals.

Of the 500 soldiers of the 7th Battalion, Royal Scots, only 58 men were present for roll call that afternoon, along with seven officers. In total, 226 people died and 246 were injured. The soldiers were buried in a mass grave in Edinburgh's Rosebank cemetery. The surviving men of the Royal Scots went by train to Liverpool, but on arrival there they were medically examined: all the enlisted men and one officer were declared unfit for service overseas and were returned to Edinburgh. It was reported in the Edinburgh Weekly that on their march from the port to the railway station the survivors were mistaken for prisoners of war and children threw rocks at them.

"Few Leith Residents are likely soon to forget the anxious whisperings of that Spring afternoon, and the wave of dismay that later swept over the Burgh when it became known that the local Battalion on its way to the Front, had been involved in an appalling railway collision at Quentin's Hill Junction near Gretna. The next morning and afternoon brought further particulars of the disaster to the first train in which 3 Officers, 29 N.C.O's and 182 men lost their lives, and as many more had sustained injuries." Lt.Col. W. Carmichael Peebles, D.S.O in the Battalion History, 1/7th Battalion, the Royal Scots.

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Those known to have worked or been treated at

Fusehill Military Hospital

during the Great War 1914-1918.

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Want to know more about Fusehill Military Hospital?

There are:2 articles tagged Fusehill Military Hospital available in our Library

What additional information is available on Fusehill Military Hospital?

Want to know more about Fusehill Military Hospital?

There are:2 items tagged Fusehill Military Hospital available in our Library
  These include information on officers service records, regimental histories, letters, diaries, personal accounts and information about actions during the Great War.

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