[personal profile] secretlondon posting in [community profile] flaneurs
1b -Get on the first bus that comes along (and that you're able to get onto).
Stay on the bus until you reach the 10th stop or the end of the route, whichever comes first.
Get off and navigate your way home by a method of your choice.

Hospitals are often served by little buses and having worked in several hospitals I have previous little bus experience: the C10 from St Thomas’ in 2013, and the W19 from Whipps Cross to Ilford in 2015. 2014 was night buses instead, and 2016 was bus free. I’m currently lucky enough to be working in the beautiful grounds of an 1840 county pauper lunatic asylum. In the past such places were hidden away – now they have little buses, in this case the G1.

The G1 goes from Streatham to Battersea. The one stop serves both directions. I used CityMapper to count – 10 stops would be either one after Clapham South station or the main entrance to St George’s Hospital. The Battersea bus was due first so Clapham it was! I waited 10 minutes and the first bus to arrive was actually the Streatham one. We’re going to St George’s!

The first Surrey County Pauper Lunatic Asylum was, in common with its peers, pretty much self-sufficient. It had a farm staffed by patients and large grounds. Over the years the grounds have been sold off and the hospital site has reduced and reduced. The current plan is for the site to reduce dramatically as the old buildings are demolished or converted into housing, and the replacement new buildings will have a much smaller footprint.


The G1 leaves the hospital passing the Central London Golf Centre. This is part of the site of the old hospital farm. It’s now a public 9 hole golf course that rents the land from the NHS (I think). In the future it will be a public park.


The first stop is Openview. I don’t know what Openview is but it reminds me of BT’s Openreach. Google maps says it is a street facing a green space. Fieldview is the other side. If you go along the road you get to Beatrix Potter Primary School and allotments – I didn’t.

The second stop is Burntwood School. This was built on former hospital grounds. It contains a listed Ice House which was previously connected to the hospital farm.

The next stop is St George’s Grove. The bus goes round in a loop here. It’s housing and a hall of residence for St George’s Hospital and its associated medical school. Like the school it was also built on former asylum grounds. The streets are named after things at St George’s – Grosvenor Way (Grosvenor Wing) and Lanesborough Way (Lanesborough Wing).

Some medical students got on the bus. They were talking about pancreases and then said they’d been to some surgery that was messy, but as it was their first, perhaps all surgery is messy?

A few stops later we get to Fountain Road/Garratt Lane. St George’s Hospital used to be in Hyde Park. It moved to Tooting to the site of two older hospitals – Grove Fever Hospital and Fountain. Some of the buildings of Grove still exist but are due to be demolished – Clare House, Bronte House and the Knightbridge Wing. Nothing remains of Fountain Hospital, except perhaps this street name.

Our final stops are in the grounds of St George’s Hospital. Lanesborough Wing is first. This is named after Lanesborough House, a mansion near Hyde park which housed the first St George’s Hospital. It was rebuilt and when the hospital moved became the Lanesborough Hotel. The last stop is the main entrance. This is where I assembled and then went home by a method of my choice (the tube).assembly
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