Annual report for 1856

The following is an extract from the annual report for the year 1856 which was published in January 1857. The report is amongst uncatalogued material at the Dorset History Centre (temporary reference number NG/HH/DO(C)/Accession 4898).



In presenting the Sixteenth Annual Report, the Committee are deeply impressed with the conviction that the result of no previous year since the foundation of the Hospital have furnished more abundant or more solid reasons for thanking God and taking courage.

The commencement of 1856 found them indebted to the Treasurer upwards of £300;  so that it was impossible not to be seriously apprehensive lest a reduction of its benefits should be imperatively required.

It was, however, decided at the last Annual Meeting that before taking an retrogressive steps, a statement of its position should be laid before the County, accompanied by an appeal for increased effort.

The Committee were rejoiced to report to the adjourned General Meeting in April that this appeal had been entirely successful, having received such a response as fully to justify their maintaining the admissions on the same scale as heretofore.

The total Donations of the year – including a sum of £50 from His Royal Highness, the Prince of Wales, whom they are happy to be permitted to enrol as a Vice-President, – amount to £581 12s 7d.;  and, what is still more gratifying, is that, through the personal exertions of some of our friends, the Subscription List has been raised from £864 9s. To £1040 14s.

A sum of £592 19s. 4d. has also been received from Congregational and other Collections, the majority of which were made on the Thanksgiving Day for the restoration of Peace, in consequence of a kind of recommendation to that effect from the Lord Bishop of the Diocese.

The Committee feel themselves bound to express their grateful sense of his Lordship’s manifest and most efficacious interest in this Institution.

The unusual resources thus placed at their disposal, have induced the Committee to incur certain expenses in the course of the year – such as the introduction throughout the Hospital of an improved kind of bedstead – which, although not absolutely indispensable, have essentially promoted the comfort of the patients;  but, not withstanding these extraordinary charges, they have been enabled not only to pay off the debt to the Treasurer, but also to fund the sum of £462 10s., and to enter upon the new year with a balance in hand of £60 6s.

The only legacy received during the year, and forming a part of the above investment, is £10 from the late Miss Ash;  but a munificent bequest from the Right Hon. George Bankes, M.P. has been announced, with a notification at the same time from Mrs. Bankes, that she should be willing to contribute a similar amount, provided the entire sum of £1000 should be appropriated to the completion of the South Wing, to be called, in memory of her late beloved, and universally respected Husband, the “BANKES WING”, or the “BANKES WARDS”.

The Committee, who have long felt the importance of providing commodious Convalescent Wards, whenever the opportunity should present itself, could not hesitate for a moment in cordially and thankfully accepting this most liberal and gratifying proposal;  and when, upon consultation with the architect of the Hospital, Benjamin Perrey, Esq., it was found that his estimate for the wing was not less than £1457, Mrs. Bankes at once expressed her readiness to augment her former offer, so as to provide the total amount required.

There still, however, remains that small portion of the building to be completed, which may connect the centre with the wing.  The Chapel also can hardly be permitted to remain in its present state;  and, although the Committee would be decidedly averse to the erection of so needlessly large, and expensive an edifice as was contemplated in the original plan, and are of opinion that there is no more eligible site than that which the present Chapel occupies, they still desire to point out that it’s kind Donors never meant it to be permanent, and that it scarcely affords sufficient accommodation for the existing number of patients.

As to the mode in which funds for these buildings should be supplied, it will be for the Governors to decide.

The sum total, and weekly average of In-patients have not quite reached the amount of preceding years;  but perhaps there never have been more cases of an aggravated character, demanding peculiarly expensive, as well as skilful and vigilant, treatment.

It is almost unnecessary to say that, after  year of especial labour, the warm thanks of the Governors are more than ever due to the Medical Officers.

The Committee grieve to say that the health of your excellent and indefatigable House-Apothecary, Mr. Bacot, broke down beneath the pressure of his urgent and deleterious duties.  They deemed it incumbent upon them, under these circumstances, to afford him the means of obtaining change of air, and engaged a temporary substitute, Mr. Porter, who has satisfactorily carried on his work during his absence.  They have every reason to hope that, by God’s blessing, he will soon be in a condition to return.

The Matron has continued to command that entire and unbroken confidence, which she has so constantly deserved.

Attention must one more be invited to the Chaplaincy Fund.  The Committee have been disappointed in their hope that the publication of the few, but liberal, Subscribers, by whom it has been hitherto supported, would obtain for it the small increase which it demands.  They can only repeat their conviction how very materially the ministrations of a resident Chaplain have tended to the well-being of the Institution, and earnestly solicit contributions to this special object.

On a review of the finances of the Hospital, it will be perceived that, from the dividends of its funded property, and the subscriptions, it may now be said to enjoy a fixed income of some £1200, to meet a probable expenditure of not less than £1550.  The Committee confidently hope that the Clergy will therefore see the necessity of still maintaining their invaluable exertions in its behalf;  and that, by means of Congregational Collections, and Donations, the deficiency will be amply supplied.





During the past Year. From the com-mencement.
In Patients. Out Patients. In Patients. Out Patients.
On the Books Jan. 1, 1856 51 68
On Recommendations 280 381 3002 5590
Household Servants 1 93
Freely as Accident cases 37 2 650 39
 Emergencies 4 38
322 383

Renewed Tickets In-patients … 72. Out-patients … 80 373 451 3778 5629
Casual Cases (1856) 770 (From commencement) 9964
Cured 131 151 1837 2719
Relieved 107 100 928 1394
Made Out-Patients 33 415
Made In-Patients 19 314
At their own request 25 17 184 47
For Misconduct 3 7 4
Not Relieved 8 5 64 32
Incapable of further Relief 5 8 82 40
Improper Objects 2 14 51
Non- attendance (mostly cured) 90 765
Tickets unrenewed 19 22
Died 19 5 157 94
No Report 6 37 91

339 395 3744 5573
Remaining on the Books 34 56 34 56

Weekly average of In-patients – 44¼.






That the best Thanks of the Meeting be given to Mrs. BANKES for her most liberal Donation.

That the Committee be authorized to take immediate steps for the erection of the South Wing, in accordance with the generous proposal of Mrs. BANKES.

That they be likewise authorized to proceed with the remaining fragment of the Centre, for which object, and also for furnishing the New Wards, any Donations would be gratefully received.

That the quest of the Chapel be postponed.

That the Thanks of the Meeting be given to JOHN FLOYER, Esq., M. P., the Chairman of this day.