Echoes of Care

The Enduring Legacy of Glen Innes Hospital

The rhythmic tap of heels on lino floors, the soft beeps of monitors, and the murmur of hushed voices – the Glen Innes hospital has been a place of care for more than 130 years. First established in 1887 after petitioning from the local community, the hospital has continued to grow from its humble beginnings as a six-bed men’s ward to an institution that provides care to many.

Originally adorned with a canvas cover for outdoor use, this antique wooden trolley likely served as the hospital’s early ambulance. With large wheels to transport patients smoothly over rough terrain, as well as a removable stretcher, this model is similar to the ‘Ashford litter’ style stretcher that was commonly used in the early 1900s. The dropped central axel, a stroke of practical ingenuity, would have allowed the rear carrier to step straight through the trolley, rather than needing to lift the patient over the high wheels.

The grooves etched into the wood tell tales of emergencies met with swift responses and witnesses on the journey to recovery, a tangible link to the dedication and care that have defined the institution throughout its rich history. The trolley’s worn wooden surface, its once vibrant finish now subdued by years of use, stands as a testament to the enduring commitment of the Glen Innes hospital to the well-being of its residents for over a century.