EARLIER this year, we ran a feature in Yesterday Once More on the 'lost' hospitals of York: among them Yearsley Bridge.

We carried a photograph of the hospital then: but while browsing on Explore York's wonderful imagine York archive we came across several more, which we include here.

Yearsley Bridge Hospital, on Huntington Road, opened as the York City Fever Hospital in 1880 as an institution where patients with infectious diseases could be kept in isolation. The fever hospital initially took mainly patients with scarlet fever - although it later took typhoid cases too, as well as children with polio amongst other conditions. In 1948 it became part of the NHS and was renamed Yearsley Bridge Hospital. It was one of five hospitals in the Leeds region specialising in the treatment of infectious diseases.

The steady decline in the number of infectious diseases such as scarlet fever and typhoid saw the hospital gradually become less used, however. It closed in December 1976 following the opening of York District Hospital. Some buildings were converted into a day centre for people with disabilities, and part of it was also used as an office for a team of York social workers.

Many of the photographs we found on Imagine York dated from the 1910s. They show a hospital with open-sided wards - presumably fresh air was regarded as important - and plenty of outdoor seating areas for patients. Some patients seem to have been accommodated in individual huts: presumably because of the risk of cross-infection.

While searching the Imagine York website for images of Huntington, we also came across two photographs of the old thatched cottages which once stood on the south west end of Main Street. The photographs date from the 1890s and early 1900s - but the cottages were already quite old then. They seem originally to have been owned by the 'township of Huntington' and to have been kept for the use of the poor.

The caption to one of the photographs reveals that they had quite a colourful history.

"These cottages... are thought to have been on the south west end of Main Street," the caption says. "They were owned by the township and had had an interesting series of tenants. In April 1843 the tenants were given a month's notice to pay the unpaid rent, they were William Bowl and Francis Londsdale.

"In 1845 at a vestry meeting it was 'resolved that an act of the very immoral conduct of some of the inmates of the houses occupied by F. Londsdale, Geo. Toes and Jn Carter that without considerable amendment of such conduct the Overseers of Poor proceed in the regular Way to dispossess them'."

In other words, the tenants were evicted. We would love to know what that 'very immoral conduct' was. Could one of the cottages have been used as a Huntington brothel, perhaps?

In 1847 the cottages were repaired: John Dennison was paid 1s 6d for 61 and a half straw bricks and Ben Wood was paid 12s 3d for thatching. By the time the photographs were taken 50 years later, the cottages seem to have been well cared for. The two young women standing outside in one of the photographs seem rather genteel.

We don't know what happened to the cottages after these photographs were taken. Do any readers have any information?

Stephen Lewis