Tredegar General Hospital, Wales, UK
Tredegar General Hospital was a community hospital in Tredegar, Blaenau Gwent, Wales providing rehabilitation and GP in-patient care with 85 full and part-time staff and 58 beds in two wards. There was a small 24-hour minor casualty unit staffed by nurses. The hospital was operated by the Aneurin Bevan Local Health Board until its closure in 2010.
In 1901, the Tredegar Medical Aid Society had convened a public meeting to discuss the establishment of a hospital and eventually a committee of more than 30 members was set up to build and manage it.
Land for the new Tredegar Park Cottage Hospital, as it was then called, was donated by Lord Tredegar. Funding came from the Tredegar Iron and Coal Company, other local employers and organisations, private and public donations and “above all” by the workmen mainly from the pits who agreed to maintain the hospital by having an extra halfpenny a week deducted from their wages. It was opened in December 1904.
Walter Conway was employed as secretary of the Medical Aid Society from 1915. He is attributed with organising the society as well as being a mentor to Aneurin Bevan who went to be Minister of Health.
Aneurin Bevan, who introduced the National Health Service in 1948, was a member of the Cottage Hospital Management Committee around 1928 and was chairman in 1929/30. The hospital now has an extension known as the Aneurin Bevan Medical Centre, and a portrait of Bevan hangs in the hospital’s foyer.
A.J. Cronin, whose 1937 novel, The Citadel, brought much attention to Tredegar’s grassroots healthcare system, worked as a doctor at the Cottage Hospital during the early 1920s.
The general hospital closed after the new Ysbyty Aneurin Bevan opened in Ebbw Vale in October 2010.