Ward 1 the latest to go

The latest inferno at Royal Derwent Hospital

UPDATED: FIRE has destroyed the second-last of the 1950s-era wards on the former Royal Derwent Hospital site. The brick building was gutted early this morning. The fire was reported at about 12.15am.

Ward 1 was one of the first two buildings erected in 1957 when the hospital embarked on its landmark rebuilding program that completely modernised mental health care in Tasmania.

In 2001 the building served as the venue for the ceremonial closing of Royal Derwent Hospital, with the then health minister Judy Jackson doing the honours.

It then became one of the first wards recycled for alternative use, reopening as the New Norfolk annexe of Claremont College. This was discontinued after several years.

Ward 1 now becomes the third of the former hospital buildings destroyed by fire this year, following Wards 11 and 2 in June, as well as Ward 9 last December. The tragic process of wiping Royal Derwent from the map is almost complete and we should hang our heads in shame.

In the cold light of day only the shell remained. It was demolished later

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