Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

The remains of Rottenrow Royal Maternity Hospital

As a bit of a follow-on from yesterday’s catch up with the Big Nappy-Pin at Rottenrow Gardens (apologies, that post has been delayed, but will be along shortly), I thought I should throw in a few pics of the remains left behind after the old hospital was demolished.

The hospital was famous in its day, as a place where worried fathers could be found in the street, banished there in the days when a birth was last place a man was expected to be found – there’s probably many early B&W pics to be found of the entrance below, where they can be seen loitering.

Today it is one of the entrances to Rottenrow Gardens.

Rottenrow Maternity Entrance

Rottenrow Maternity Entrance

An arch above a doorway in the adjacent North Portland Street carries dates relating to the founding of the hospital, and provides another entrance to the gardens:

Rottenrow Maternity Arch

Rottenrow Maternity Arch

Please note the date on the left is 1835 – I mistook this for 1885 at first glance, which caused some confusion.

A closer look allows some of the decaying inscription and Glasgow’s coat of arms to be seen, but I can’t quite make out the word preceding the 1880 date:

Rottenrow Maternity Arch Detail

Rottenrow Maternity Arch Detail

I’ve tried digging up earlier (but still recent) pics of this carving, but they all show similar erosion and loss of distinction of the letters, already confused as a result of their highly stylised form.

Any really old B&W pics I can access are just too small to show any useful detail.


May 8, 2017 - Posted by | Civilian, Lost, photography | , , , ,


  1. ‘Founded’ I think


    Comment by Ray Melville | May 8, 2017

  2. Thanks Ray, but ‘FOUNDED’ is the one on the left, preceding the date of AD. 1835 (note I had this as 1885 in error).

    Problem word is the eroded one on the right, preceding the earlier date of AD. 1880


    Comment by Apollo | May 8, 2017

  3. Is it not REBUILT?


    Comment by Eddie Briggs | May 8, 2017

  4. Thanks Eddie.

    I had rejected ‘REBUILT’ when I thought if it, but with someone else seeing this in the stylised letters I did some more digging, and it seems to be my mistake – so it’s just as well I appealed for help!

    The date on the left is actually 1835, NOT 1885 as it appears at first glance – this mistake on my part obviously made me think 1880 was nonsense for ‘REBUILT’

    Thanks for your contribution, and I have corrected the errors I made – no point in confusing more people.


    Comment by Apollo | May 8, 2017

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