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The plaque commemorates the centenary of the original North Shore Hospital which was opened in 1888. The foundation stone of the original North Shore Cottage Hospital was relaid at the Royal North Shore Hospital site in 1921. 

In the 1880s a population of some 20,000 lived in relative isolation on the North Shore of Sydney. Any who became ill faced a long and hazardous journey by dray and punt to the city for attention. In 1885, Mr Frank Treatt, the local magistrate, and his wife were instrumental in establishing a committee of citizens to plan for a hospital and to raise funds.

A successful Industrial Exhibition and public appeals were held; the first Hospital Committee was formed in 1886. On 18 June 1887 the foundation stone was laid by Sir Henry Parkes, then the Colonial Secretary, on a site on the North Willoughby Road, St Leonards (now Crows Nest). The land had been given by Mr David Berry, one of a family of Scottish merchants who grew produce in the Shoalhaven area, transporting it to Sydney by coastal boat and landing at a site which now bears his name — Berry’s Bay — which was also in the large municipality of St Leonards. It was subsequently divided into districts, the main one becoming North Sydney.

On Monday 18 June 1888, the North Shore Cottage Hospital, with fourteen beds and a nursing staff of five, opened ‘for the reception of accident patients and illness occurring among the poor of the district. The total cost, including the land, had been £2,960.

The foundation stone of the old North Shore Cottage Hospital, which was laid by Sir Henry Parkes on June 18. 1887, was re-laid yesterday afternoon by the president of the Royal North Shore Hospital, Mr. J. Randal Carey, in the presence of the members of the board of directors, the medical staff of the hospital, and a number of interested friends. Mr. Frank George, one of the vice-presidents, recalled the fact that the old Cottage Hospital, when the foundation-stone was laid by Sir Henry Parkes, was built to accommodate only 14 patients, and when it was opened a year later the total expenditure for upkeep was £900. He contrasted that with the position today, 30 years later, when the hospital would accommodate 250 beds, and the expenditure last year was £22,000.

Mr. George traced the history of the hospital throughout, until an area of eight acres was made available on the present site, and the foundation-stone of the building then erected was laid by Sir Harry Rawson in 1903. The total area of the present site has been increased, until it stands at about 18 acres. He referred to the very keen interest Mr. Carey had taken in the hospital during his presidency for the past 21 years, and a large measure of its success, he said, was due to the president's foresight and careful handling of the finances. Mr. G. S. Bailey, senior vice-president, also referred to the president's popularity and his interest in the institution, and presented him with a silver trowel, and requested him to relay the foundation-stone which was secured after the demolition of the old Cottage Hospital from Mr. C. Schultz.  Mr. Carey said that it was a pleasure to have the honor of laying the stone in its new position, declaring the stone "well and truly laid." The new foundation-stone bears the inscription: "The foundation-stone of the original North Shore Cottage Hospital was re-laid hereunder by the president, J. Randal Carey, Esq., on Feb. 23. 1921," and the foundation-stone which was removed from the old institution was inscribed: "This stone was laid by Sir Henry Parkes, P.C., G.C.M.G., 18th June, 1887." 

Daily Telegraph (Sydney), 24 February 1921.


Address:Reserve Road , Vanderfield Building, Royal North Shore Hospital, St Leonards, 2065
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -33.820197
Long: 151.189033
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Government
Actual Event Start Date:18-June-1888
Actual Event End Date:18-June-1988


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Saturday 18th June, 1988
Front Inscription


On Monday 18 June 1888, the North Shore Cottage Hospital 
opened on the North Willoughby Road for the "reception of 
accidents and non infectious diseases"  

On 10 June 1903, the newly styled Royal North Shore Hospital 
of Sydney transferred to the present Gore Hill site. 

This plaque was unveiled by 
The Hon. Peter Collins, B.A., L.L.B., M.P. 
Minister For Health For New South Wales

On Saturday 18 June 1988.

Dr. Roger Vanderfield O.B.E.  
General Medical Superintendent


Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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