originally published Dec 2nd 2015 @ 10:25 PM | updated JAN 12th 2017 @ 10.08pm
SEXUAL & PHYSICAL ABUSE, DRUG TRIALS, ELECTRIC SHOCK, MKULTRA, HUMAN EXPERIMENTATION
As always, My opinion in PURPLE links in BLUE. Archived is on ORANGE All else quoted from source
“INCIDENTS” & NEWSPAPER ARTICLES
Tea assault probe Nov 2nd 1997
A hospital worker has been suspended over claims that she threw a scalding cup of tea over a deaf mute patient.
The 38-year-old man was badly burned.
Police and bosses at Lennox Castle hospital, near Glasgow, are probing the allegation against Linda Watson, whose duties included cleaning and cooking on the ward. https://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-61089925.html
Hidden Glasgow: Lennox Castle http://www.hiddenglasgow.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5149 http://archive.li/jVimc
INVESTIGATION:the Scottish psychiatric hospital
Scotland on Sunday. September 21, 1997. by Paul Rowinski.
Row as doctored report spares trust’s blushes.
Experts claim edited highlights of official report into Lennox Castle hospital ignore condemnation of unacceptable conditions.
AN official report on conditions inside a Scottish psychiatric hospital was doctored to save a health trust’s embarassment.
The final report on Lennox Castle Hospital outside Glasgow was only mildly critical when it was published last month, but the original draft was infinitely more scathing. It condemned management, basic standards of care, and reported patients’ complaints of physical and mental abuse. Read the articles in full https://prowinski.wordpress.com/investigations/ http://archive.li/XjeEo
- Learning difficulties hospital suspends six 30.05.00 http://archive.li/pUiO6
- Patient was found on fire in hospital toilet, inquiry told Herald Scotland 05.01.93 http://archive.li/5uhtd
- Discharges From Lennox Castle
- Scandal of the orphans lost in unmarked graves Daily Express 23.o2.15 http://archive.li/kogHh
- Victims’ fury as abuse inquiry delayed The National 24.05.15 http://archive.li/5byoR
- IMDb: Most Popular People Born In “Lennox Castle Hospital http://archive.li/bKfxn
Lennox Castle was opened on September 24, 1936, by Lord Provost John Stewart was named Lennox Castle Certified Institution for Mental Defectives.
It was built between 1837 and 1841, in the square style of a Norman castle for John Lennox Kincaid by architect David Hamilton (1768 – 1843). The large, three storey red sandstone mansion has battlemented corner towers, a five story tower, and a large entrance porch to the north.
During World War I, the castle was requisitioned for use as a military hospital.
In 1927, the castle was purchased by Glasgow Corporation for £25,000, together with 494 ha (1,222 acres) of the Lennox Kincaid estate, as part of its plans to create a hospital for the mentally-ill. Built to the designs of Wylie, Shanks and Wylie, the new institution provided twenty dormitory blocks, with sixty beds in each, accommodating a total of twelve hundred patients, six hundred males and six hundred females in separate sections. Each section also had its own dining hall, kitchen, and workshop. There was also a new central administration block, medical block, visitors’ tea-room, assembly hall with cinema, and forty additional houses which served as married quarters for the staff. During the construction phase, the castle building was used to house the hospital’s patients. When the works were completed, the castle then became the nurses home.
In 1936, Lennox Castle Certified Institution for Mental Defectives officially opened.
During World War II, the castle was again requisitioned for use as a hospital, with patients being transferred to huts erected in the grounds – a temporary arrangement that lasted for some forty years.
In 1942, the hospital allocated beds to maternity patients, as part of another temporary arrangement, this one lasting until 1964.
On November 3, 1948, Marie McDonald McLaughlin Lawrie was born at Lennoxtown – now better known as singer Lulu Kennedy-Cairns, OBE.
In 1987, the original Lennox Castle building was no longer required by the hospital, and was vacated.
A phased closure plan for the hospital began in the 1990s, including a planned resettlement of all the residents. Lennox Castle Hospital closed in April, 2002.
By 2004, only the original Lennox Castle building remained on the site, all other hospital buildings having been demolished, and the site cleared.
On May 11, 2006, the first ground was broken to mark the beginning of construction of Celtic Football Club’s new training facilities on the site, due for completion in the summer of 2007.
Builders Mactaggart & Mickel have also been granted consent to regenerate the site of the former Lennox Castle Hospital with a substantial mix of 76 properties in their Campsie View development.
Lennox Castle was severely damaged by fire on May 19, 2008. Part of the tower was destroyed, and movement of the stonework may lead to the demolition of the building. The cause of the fire is undetermined. http://www.secretscotland.org.uk/index.php/Secrets/LennoxCastleHospital http://archive.li/V6kmY
UNMARRIED mothers, wayward teenagers and Down’s Syndrome sufferers were just some of the people starved, drugged and abused at Lennox Castle in Lennoxtown.
This ward was home for many patient’s before the hospital’s closure
AFTER 21 years in Lennox Castle, psychiatrists admitted they could find nothing wrong with Marie O’Connor.
“I never belonged there, at least I knew that and that’s why I wanted away,” she says.
Lennox Castle, in Lennoxtown, Dunbartonshire, was less of a mental institution than a warehouse, where those deemed society’s misfits were deposited.
Truants, unmarried mothers, wayward teenagers and children with learning difficulties, Down’s syndrome or mental illness all ended up there.
They were starved, drugged, physically and emotionally abused and robbed of their humanity.
Wednesday sees the launch of Lennox Castle Stories, a website that gathers artwork and thoughts from former patients and staff of what was Scotland’s largest mental hospital, which closed in 2002.
The project is ongoing, a partnership between arts organisation Project Ability and supported living organisation C-Cange.
Marie is sitting with Norman Telfer, a pensioner put into the institution when he was 14 because he skipped school. He left 45 years later.
He remembers the cold ground under his bare feet from when he ran round the blocks of the hospital as punishment for failing to address a staff member as sir.
The laps were punctuated by blows from a baseball bat.
He says: “Lennox Castle was a wicked place to stay. I wouldn’t have wished it on anyone.”
Conditions were so bad that in 1986, the hospital’s medical director Dr Alasdair Sim broke ranks to say that he had never worked in “a worse pit”
Norman with some of his artwork
He added: “I am sick to the stomach about the plight of these poor people.”
Opened in 1936 to house 1200 people, 1700 were housed there at its peak in the 1970s. They were crammed 32 to a single-sex dormitory, with no right to privacy or individuality.
Part of the castle grounds now house Celtic’s training ground, opened in 2007. Players come and go, oblivious to what went on just decades before.
Marie regularly ran away. She was not the only one.
Those who did were chased by dogs through the surrounding woods. When returned, they were locked up for six weeks, placed on a mattress on the floor, drugged and forbidden visitors.
Punishments included being dressed in a knee-length white nightshirt and being forced to scrub the floors with a toothbrush.
For misdemeanours, patients would be made to sit in a nightdress at a table in the corridor and eat bread and milk.
Not that mealtimes were much better for the rest.
Marie says: “The patients would sit with a plate and the staff would throw a pie at them, like it was feeding time at the zoo.”
One relative of a patient said he was horrified when he saw bread being thrown at his brother, like they were feeding birds.
In December 1989, a study in the British Medical Journal found a quarter of patients in Lennox Castle were grossly underweight and malnourished.
Marie had been placed in the hospital when she went off the rails, drinking and smoking and staying out.
She was diagnosed with a learning difficulty and her parents were assured Lennox Castle was the best place for her.
Marie says: “I was no different from thousands of other teenagers. I knew there was nothing wrong with me and if I hadn’t been strong in my mind, I would have gone crazy.”
Many were drugged and became institutionalised, making it almost impossible to break free.
Psychiatrists eventually admitted Marie had no learning difficulties and she was released but her ordeal wasn’t quite over.
Four years later, aged 39, she had a son, Joseph, to a former worker at the hospital.
But she had to fight to keep him and social workers visited her up to three times a day until they recognised she was a fit mother.
Marie with her son, Joseph
Her life now is a happy one but at 48, she is angry that she left behind her youth in Lennox Castle.
“I should never have been there,” she says. “I’ll never forget what was done to us.”
Norman was a teenage orphan when social workers placed him in the castle. When he came out, he was six years short of his pension.
He remembers patients being treated far worse than prisoners.
He says: “The corridor had to be scrubbed until it was shining or they would kick the bucket over and you would start again.
“Beds had to be made to perfection or they would tip them up and make you start again.”
The men and women were given £5 a week in pocket money, which would be docked if they stepped out of line.
The patients had to work, some in the laundry or, as in Norman’s case, a piggery in nearby Kirkintilloch.
He got up at 6.30am, polished the floor by his bed and tidied, was fed “wallpaper paste” porridge, got a bus at 8am and returned at 6pm to be handed a scrubber and soap to clean the floors and windows.
Sometimes the patients were used as entertainment. Women have talked of having to strip naked while staff laughed at them and men were made to perform sexual acts on each other for the amusement of staff.
Ian Doak, 58, was placed in Lennox Castle for seven years because his mother struggled to cope with him in his teenage years.
Among his artwork is an animation of plasticine figurines seen gazing out of the castle’s windows. They have eyes but no mouth, a poignant symbol of their powerlessness.
Eventually, Lennox Castle became more informal but although patients could leave, many had nowhere to go and no clue how to live without the routines laid out for them.
A phased programme was devised in the 1990s to support them in the community.
Lennox Castle Hospital
Norman, Marie and Ian have all been successfully reintegrated and are part of the team of former patients leading the Lennox Castle Stories project.
Dr Sam Smith, who was on the commissioning team which helped close the castle and move people out, says the project is important, “lest we forget”.
She adds: “It is hard for people to imagine that in our recent history, people thought it appropriate for sections of the population to be kept isolated and away from their communities and loved ones, with no choices on how their lives should be run.”
In 2001, Dr Smith founded C-Change, which advocates that everyone is entitled to the help needed to allow them to live in their own home.
She says: “Lennox Castle was a community but not as we understand community. This community was built on power and control, adversity and strength, weakness and loss of self.”
Her greatest pleasure has been to see the smothered spirits of the patients flourish on the outside.
She says: “The same people are now mothers, fathers, workers who are part of the community and have so much to contribute. I saw them being transformed in a short space of time, just by being allowed to live in their own homes.
CLAIMS that scientific experiments were done on orphans and the deportation of children to Australia and Canada must be investigated by the Scottish inquiry into child abuse, survivors insisted last night.
Allegations that Scottish institutions were involved in drug tests on vulnerable children should be fully explored by the Scottish Government inquiry, according to a group representing hundreds of survivors.
‘This government must always be on the side of victims of abuse’
The Scottish Government is currently deciding what form its historical abuse inquiry should take and how it intends to uncover the deeply disturbing crimes that have been committed against children in Scotland over the last few decades.
Scotland on Sunday has seen a draft submission to ministers prepared by Incas (In Care Abuse Survivors Scotland) demanding that the government sets up an investigation with a wide remit looking at abuse allegations dating from the 1930s to the present. The document says the inquiry should “review medical experimentation that was carried out on vulnerable children and adults without consent”. http://www.scotsman.com/news/inquiry-urged-over-child-experiment-claims-1-3719003 http://archive.li/rQ82R
The allegations centre on at least four institutions where thousands of children are said to have been experimented upon in conditions described as “like something out of Auschwitz”.
It is alleged that Porton Down, the top secret military facility in Wiltshire, was involved in trialling drugs for use in the Cold War on youngsters who were regarded as “feeble-minded”.
One survivor told this newspaper he has obtained written and video evidence that he will pass to the public inquiry into historical abuse of children in care when it begins next year.
The man, now in his 50s, has been advised by lawyers to conceal his identity for his own safety until his full submission can be lodged at the inquiry announced by Scottish Education Secretary Angela Constance.
However, he was willing to divulge some of his intended testimony about the treatment he and others suffered.
He said: “Six and seven year olds were tied to racks and given electric shocks.
“I was incarcerated with orderlies armed with rubber coshes.
“We were imprisoned, experimented upon, lobotomies, you name it, they did it.
“I was there, I saw it with my own eyes.
We were imprisoned, experimented upon, lobotomies, you name it, they did it
“I was classed as a misfit, a mental oddity, made a ward of court.
“My mother was killed and I became an orphan, so they took it upon themselves to have me experimented upon.”
Lennox Castle Hospital, near Lennoxtown, East Dunbartonshire, is one of four Scottish institutions alleged to have been involved.
The witness believes there may have been as many as 3,500 children who were involved in the Porton Down testing programme over the years.
He said: “They were using orphans to experiment with drugs for the Cold War.
“The drug programme ran from 1948 to 1982.
“I believe this happened throughout the UK but I’m referring to Scotland.
“I have this evidence, on paper and on film, and I will hand it to the public inquiry.
“It was like something out of Auschwitz and people will be full of revulsion when they learn the state allowed this to happen.”
Lennox Castle Hospital, which closed in 2002 and is now the site of Celtic FC’s training ground, was home to children and adults with learning difficulties or conditions such as Down’s syndrome, as well as truants, unmarried mothers and wayward teenagers.
Some patients were sent there as children, often for the most trivial reasons, and ended up spending decades locked up.
Conditions improved after a series of damning reports and investigations, including a 1986 World in Action TV documentary which led to questions in the House of Commons.
Last night, Professor Ulf Schmidt of the University of Kent, Britain’s leading expert on human experimentation at Porton Down, said he had never heard of a drug trial programme involving orphans.
He added: “That is not to say these experiments didn’t happen, but I would be very cautious in dealing with these allegations.
“Some stories have appeared and reappeared over the past 50 years, including a similar one about drug testing and euthanasia involving elderly people that was eventually shown to be false.”
Six years ago hundreds of veterans who ‘volunteered’ to take part in tests at Porton Down were offered £3million in compensation.
They were exposed to nerve agents, such as sarin gas, and hallucinogens, such as LSD.
In the most infamous case, from 1953, Ronald Maddison took part in a trial of what he believed was a cold remedy, but died within an hour of having sarin dabbed on his arm.
Other Porton Down experiments included spraying bacteria over the south coast of England and dropping cancer-causing particles from planes.
And Gruinard Island in Wester Ross had to be sealed off for almost 50 years after it was contaminated with anthrax during the Second World War.
Porton Down is the home of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, an agency of the Ministry of Defence.
A spokeswoman said: “We are not aware of any tests involving children at Portown Down and have seen absolutely no evidence to back up these claims http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/548129/Holyrood-child-abuse-inquiry-Scottish-orphans-military-experiments http://archive.li/TSwxX
WATCH Mental Health. LENNOX CASTLE. Open University
- Lennox Castle: A Guided Tour – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (1/15)
- Evidence From The Archives – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (2/15)
- Reporting The Riot – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (3/15)
- Eyewitness To The Riot – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (4/15)
- Resident’s Perspective: Margaret – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (5/15
- Nurse’s Perspective: Colin – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (6/15)
- Resident’s Perspective: Jimmy – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (7/15)
- Starting Work at Lennox Castle – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (8/15)
- The Hospital Community – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (9/15)
- Questioning Practice – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (10/15)
- Going Out and About – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (11/15)
- Institutional Clothing – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (12/15)
- The Beginning of Change – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (13/15)
- Reflecting on A Regime – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (14/15)
- Margaret: Life After Lennox – Mental Health: Lennox Castle (15/15)
More on Lennox Castle
More on Human Experimentation in UK
HISTORY & OTHER INFO
WATCH LENNOX CASTLE HIDDEN HISTORY
LENNOX CASTLE: The Human History Of An Institution
History of the partition of the Lennox by Mark Napier 1798-1879 (Internet Archive)
- Talking Scotland Forum
- PATIENT’S STORIES
- Pictures of Lennox Castle July 2014
- Lennox Castle | Historic Hospitals
- The Centre for the Social History of Health and Healthcare Health and health
- IMDb: Most Popular People Born In “Lennox Castle Hospital
LENNOX CASTLE: INFO ON NATIONAL ARCHIVE RECORDS
- gb812-hb20 – Records of Lennox Castle Hospital
- LENNOX CASTLE REGISTER OF DEATHS
- Records of Lennox Castle Hospital, Lennoxtown
- Register of deaths (patients compulsorily detained) 1962-1983
- Records of Lennox Castle Hospital, Lennoxtown,
- Register of deaths of informal patients at Lennox Castle Feb 1959-April 2004
- Records of Lennox Castle Hospital, Archives Hub 1913-2004
- Records of Lennox Castle: Glasgow Uni Archives
- Lennox Castle: National Archives