Hopedene Maternity Home

Newcastle, Ryder and Yates 1969

Hopedene Maternity Home was built for the Salvation Army as an extension to a large Victorian house of the same name. It replaced an earlier labour ward with a new wing for six mothers and was designed as the first part of a major development, which envisaged the replacement of the Victorian mansion and the addition of a second storey.

The dramatic solution of cantilevering the new wing over the steeply sloping site was accentuated by using darker brickwork for the upper floor. The lower floor, which housed ancillary spaces, followed the steep gradient of the site and was clad in a lighter brick and set back to allow the main floor to be dominant. The wards overlooked the large west-facing garden, while the eastern elevation was opened up with only a minimum number of slit windows to achieve the privacy and quiet essential in a home for young mothers. Its brindle brick was chosen for ease of matching should the building be extended.

The Salvation Army handed over the building to the local authority social services, and it was demolished in the 1990s.

All images courtesy of Philipson Studios