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Montage of three nurses. All images © Wellcome Library, London. References: L0010490, L0018470, L0010789. Hospital Records Database
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Details: Belle Grove Lunatic Asylum,

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Present name

Belle Grove Lunatic Asylum 

Previous name(s)

Belle Grove Lunatic Asylum, 1766-1795
Bellegrove Retreat, 1795-, 1850-1865  



Foundation Year




Closure year


Administrative authorities

Regional Hospital Board (1948-74)

Not Applicable 

Hospital Management Committee (1948-74)

Not Applicable 

Regional Health Authority (1974-82)

Not Applicable 

Regional Health Authority (1982- )

Not Applicable 

District Health Authority (1974-82)

Not Applicable 

District Health Authority (1982- )

Not Applicable 

County (before 1974)


County (1974-1996)

Not Applicable 

County (after 1996)

Not applicable 


Pre 1948


Post 1948


Pre 1948


Post 1948

Other information

Belle Grove Lunatic Asylum opened on 18 October 1766 at St Luke's Asylum, and catered for private patients. Situated near Hunters Moor Hospital. It was rebuilt and enlarged in 1795 and became known as Bellegrove Retreat. By 1827 it had 8 or 9 patients of each sex, who mostly had their own bedroom and sitting room which were clean, comfortable, neatly furnished, papered and carpeted. They had pleasant gardens, separate from those of the noisy or unruly patients who occupied a dormitory away from the main building. They seem from contemporary reports to have been well fed, had baths and recreation, including books from circulating libraries and 'harmless games'. For reasons unknown, between 1850 and 1865 the Belle Grove Asylum closed.

Records can be found at:


  Tyne and Wear Archives Service

Record type

Date range


1833 - 1845


1833 - 1845

Finding aids

Finding aids


Location of finding aids

At Repository(AR)



Lists of visitors appointed by magistrates and reports of their visits to the asylum; some material among records of St Nicholas Hospital

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