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Jeffrey Hall, Monk Street, Monkwearmouth

4th Durham Voluntary Aid Detachment Hospital

Type: Hospital

The various Voluntary Aid Detachment (VAD) Hospitals in Sunderland were not run by the Ministry of Pensions. During the war they were administered by the Joint War Committee of the British Red Cross and the Order of St. John, overseen by Dame Katherine Furse and later Lady Ampthill, Margaret Lygon Russell.

A scheme for Voluntary Aid was introduced well before the First World War following the 1907 Territorial Forces and Reserve Act. Jeffrey Hall and Hammerton House VADs were established around 1911; Jeffrey Hall being affiliated to the Order of St. John.

The Jeffrey Hall hospital received casualties directly, which were then moved on to the convalescent hospitals later.

The VAD hospitals were closed in late 1918, early 1919 and remaining patients moved to the (Pensions) War Hospital in Chester Road.

The Lady Superintendent and Matron of Jeffrey Hall was Miss Connie Ballingall, she was awarded the Royal Red Cross medal (2nd class)

The Sister was Miss Margaret Sharpe Cuthbertson who was also awarded the Royal Red Cross medal (2nd class).

The hall which is marked as ‘Institute’ on contemporary maps was demolished in the sixties.

The following information comes from records held at the archives at the Museum of the Order of St John, and is used with their kind permission. Reference OSJ/1/1/12/5:

VAD Hospital, Jeffrey Memorial Hall, Sunderland
September 14th 1917

Commandant: Dr Modlin

Hospital: This is St Bede’s Church Hall lent for the purpose of a hospital.

Beds: 63 beds in
3 wards

Trained staff: 1 Matron
2 Sisters billeted out

Massage: 1 Masseur (visiting)

VADs: 16 work in shifts. All live out and are unable to give full time.

Paid help: 3 Charwomen

Remarks: This hospital is in excellent order. There is a good mess room. The wards are light and airy. The stores and kitchens are in excellent order.

Signed: SA Swift

For further information:
Museum of the Order of St John
VAD Hospitals in Northumberland and Durham 1914-1918
Scarlet Finders
Historic England

Civil Parish: Sunderland

Contributed by Simon W