Interesting


Discover Glenside through its Objects #2: Unlocking the Past

Glenside Hospital Museum

Helen Bolton continues her journey round the museum. The object – or objects – that first caught my eye when I stepped into the museum were two sets of fairly ordinary looking keys. One was draped casually over a mug commemorating Stoke Park (a hospital for people with learning disabilities and sister institution to Glenside […]

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Discover Glenside Through its Objects #1: A Visitor’s Journey

Glenside Hospital Museum

To enter the museum, you step through a heavy wooden door to a small side-vestibule that leads you into the church. On one side is a glass case displaying objects that give a first taste of what is to come: a ceramic bed warmer, an ancient enormous thermometer for testing bath temperature, and an early […]


‘Life in a lunatic asylum’

Glenside Hospital Museum

Extracts from the book by patient and author John Weston. In his book ‘Life in a lunatic asylum: an autobiographical sketch’ describes the Airing courts where the patient’s exercised, as he saw them in the 1860’s. These same Airing courts can still be seen today if you visit Glenside Hospital Museum, they are part of […]

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Historians are like a detectives: discovering John Weston

Glenside Hospital Museum

A couple of years ago I was in the Welcome Institute Library, (which is very pleasant) looking up stuff about the Bristol Asylum. I came across a small book of 104 pages entitled ‘Life in a lunatic asylum: an autobiographical sketch’. It was written anonymously and published in London, by Houlston & Wright in 1867. […]


Idiot

Glenside Hospital Museum

Another ‘idiot’ is in the news. Last month a man wearing a fake suicide belt hijacked a plane flying from Alexandria to Cairo. Seif Eldin Mustafa wanted to see his ex-wife and so he forced the pilot to fly to Cyprus where she lived. After his arrest, a spokesman for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry was […]

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Photographs of asylum patients: an analysis

Glenside Hospital Museum

Asylum photographs: a snap shot in time part 2 by Paul Tobia. During the 1890s the asylum began to take photographs of the patients and place them in the case notes. Most have survived and I have now an archive of over 700 of these photographs which have been digitally restored. I have chosen the […]


Two patients, two photographs, two conditions

Glenside Hospital Museum

Asylum photographs: a snap shot in time part 1 by Paul Tobia. Poor mental health can strike at any time. In Victorian Britain it could be caused by a skin disease or as now old age. While photographs capture a very short period of time and the sitter could look very different a few seconds […]

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Moron. Be aware human feelings are involved

Glenside Hospital Museum

WORDS HAVE POWER JILL ACHINEKU’S BLOG SERIES EXPLORING ABLEIST LANGUAGE FOR GHM   “He makes the same mistake as the others when they look at a feeble-minded person and laugh because they don’t understand there are human feelings involved.” The words of Daniel Keyes’ protagonist, Charlie Gordon, in ‘Flowers for Algernon’. If you were required […]


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Words have power

Glenside Hospital Museum

In recent years there has been a movement to call attention to the widespread use of ableist language. If you don’t know, ableist language is any word or phrase that intentionally or inadvertently targets an individual with a disability. So using words like crazy, idiot, lame etc. to describe someone is ableist. Some people think […]


Between the Devil and the Angels

Glenside Hospital Museum

Asylum Lives blog post by Paul Tobia This blog starts with the lives and experiences of people who suffered from mental health problems from 1861 to 1900 at the Bristol Lunatic Asylum, which later became Glenside Hospital. It will be run by Glenside Hospital Museum and myself, Paul Tobia. Initially it will be based on […]

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‘We are moved by war’ our exhibition hosted by Bristol Cathedral

Glenside Hospital Museum

We have a special exhibition about Glenside Hospital’s First World War History as part of Bristol Cathedral’s First World War centenary commemoration ‘We Have Our Lives’. The exhibition reminds us of the enormity of the task Bristol’s population faced as the wounded arrived in their hundreds by train into Temple Meads. Admission to the Cathedral […]


Video on Asylum Furnishings and Decoration circa 1891

Glenside Hospital Museum

Henry Burdett reading from his book on Asylum Furniture and Decoration Moira Gavin has produced a video (click on link above to see) as part of our exhibition currently on show at the Museum ‘In Search of Self’.Moria has been cataloging our books and drew her inspiration from one of the many lovely old books […]


A day at Glenside Hospital Museum

Glenside Hospital Museum

Developed by Part Exchange Co’s Hidden City Writer in residence project through their Arts Council funded Engine House project. DO NO HARM WHILE TRYING TO DO SOME GOOD A day at Glenside Hospital Museum by Lucy Bell There are life-sized mannequins at Glenside Hospital Museum. Dressed in medical gowns, they treat other mannequins with everything […]


Great Doors Open Day: BIG Thank You x 3

Glenside Hospital Museum

  x 3 Thank you to the Doors Open Day team for yet another successful event. We do appreciate all the work that goes into organising the day. Thank you too to all our volunteers who came in to make sure it went to plan, and especially those who dressed for the event! Thank you […]

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Ann Blannin with her art piece. A brain.

In Search of Self: art inspired by the Museum

Glenside Hospital Museum

On 12th September for Bristol Doors Open Day 2015 we are launching an exhibition of art done by the custodians of our collection. On the day some of our volunteers will be in costume reflecting different aspects of the building’s history. Come and spot the wounded First World War soldier dressed in blue, the Victorian […]


Now I know my ECTS

Glenside Hospital Museum

Guest post by volunteer Ted Aylmer. Visit his interesting Bristol history blog here. There are so many interesting and amazing artifacts at Glenside Hospital Museum, that sometimes it’s difficult to know which ones to write about. As ECT is an area that fascinates many people and, since we have a few different models of ECT machines, and one […]

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The Fabric of the Mind: Notes on Fashion, Learning Difficulties and Mental Health

Glenside Hospital Museum

Guest post by Bethany Lamont, one of our volunteers. To struggle with mental health is as much a visible social deviance as an internal conflict. The crying on public transport, the talking to oneself, the compulsive self destruction, the worried looks. As a neurodiverse person with chronic mental health struggles, who lives outside of able […]