Basic Site Details

Name: Aberdeen Lunatic Asylum
City or county: Aberdeen
Country: Scotland
Status: Demolished
Grid ref:
Notes: Lodge is C Listed (Westburn Road)

Alternative Names

The following alternative names are associated with this building/design:
 NameCurrent name?Notes
Item 1 of 4Aberdeen Royal Asylum  
Item 2 of 4Royal Cornhill HospitalYes 
Item 3 of 4Royal Lunatic Asylum  
Item 4 of 4Royal Mental Hospital  

Building Type Classification

The building is classified under the following categories:
 ClassificationOriginal classification?Notes
Item 1 of 1Psychiatric hospital  

Street Addresses

The following street addresses are associated with this building:
 AddressMain entrance?Notes
Item 1 of 3Berryden RoadYes 
Item 2 of 3Cornhill RoadYes 
Item 3 of 332, Westburn RoadYesAsylum Lodge


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 2117981800Build/constructionOriginal building
Item 2 of 211 November 1800 OpenedOriginal building
Item 3 of 211817After 1820Build/constructionNew building
Item 4 of 2120 December 1820  Patients moved into new building
Item 5 of 211822  Smith took over from Simpson after dispute
Item 6 of 211833 Journal referenceWash house and laundry
Item 7 of 2118371840Build/constructionKitchens
Item 8 of 211843 Build/constructionWorkshops and colonnades. or perhapds 1845-46- Colvin?
Item 9 of 211847 Plans drawn upDesigns for chapel
Item 10 of 211850 Journal referenceEast wing
Item 11 of 211852 Build/constructionPhysician superintendent's house
Item 12 of 211854  West wing
Item 13 of 211855 Build/constructionChapel built, and central building enlarged to link with wings
Item 14 of 211870 Journal referenceEast wing
Item 15 of 211875 Journal referenceAdditions
Item 16 of 2118901893 Separate hospital section built
Item 17 of 2125 February 1897 Plans submittedAdditions
Item 18 of 2120 October 1898 Plans submittedLodge on Cornhill Road
Item 19 of 2123 March 1899  Additions - major remodelling
Item 20 of 21After 1902  Extensions
Item 21 of 2119391940Demolitionof original Simpson building


Design and Construction

The following individuals or organisations have carried out design/construction work. Where architects or practices worked together, matching letters appear beside their names in the Partnership Group column.
 NameRolePartnership GroupFromToNotes
Item 1 of 27Dodd, ___Architect 17981800 
Item 2 of 27Archibald SimpsonArchitectM18191822New building
Item 3 of 27John SmithArchitectC1822 Took over from Simpson after dispute
Item 4 of 27John SmithArchitectD1833 Wash house and laundry
Item 5 of 27Archibald SimpsonArchitectN18371840Kitchens
Item 6 of 27Archibald SimpsonArchitectO1843 Workshops and colonnades. Colvin gives dates as 1845-46 for additions
Item 7 of 27William RamageArchitectE18471855Additions, including chapel, east wing and west wing, and enlargement of central building to link with wings
Item 8 of 27J & W SmithArchitectural practiceA1870 East wing
Item 9 of 27William Smith IIArchitectA1870 East wing
Item 10 of 27J & W SmithArchitectural practiceB1875 Additions
Item 11 of 27William Smith IIArchitectB1875 Additions
Item 12 of 27W & J Smith and KellyArchitectural practiceG18901893New hospital section
Item 13 of 27William KellyArchitectG18901893New hospital section
Item 14 of 27William Smith IIArchitectG1890 May have been involved at the beginning
Item 15 of 27George Thow SmithArchitectG18911893New hospital section - as apprentice to W & J Smith and Kelly
Item 16 of 27Walter Henry BullochArchitectG18911893New hospital section - as assistant to W & J Smith and Kelly
Item 17 of 27W & J Smith and KellyArchitectural practiceH1897 Additions
Item 18 of 27Walter Henry BullochArchitectH1897 Additions - probably involved, as assistant to W & J Smith and Kelly
Item 19 of 27William KellyArchitectH1897 Additions
Item 20 of 27W & J Smith and KellyArchitectural practiceJ18971899Lodge on Cornhill Road
Item 21 of 27William KellyArchitectJ18971899Lodge on Cornhill Road
Item 22 of 27W & J Smith and KellyArchitectural practiceK1899 Additions - major remodelling
Item 23 of 27William KellyArchitectK1899 Additions- major remodelling
Item 24 of 27George Dudley StalkerArchitectLAfter 1928Before 1933Extensions - as apprentice to James Brown Nicol
Item 25 of 27James Brown NicolArchitectLc. 1930 * Extensions
Item 26 of 27Kelly & NicolArchitectural practiceLc. 1930 * Extensions
Item 27 of 27William KellyArchitectLc. 1930 * Extensions

* earliest date known from documented sources.

Related Buildings, Structures and Designs

Child Structures

This structure or site has the following component or child structures (click on an item to view details):
 Building NameNotes
Item 1 of 1Aberdeen Lunatic Asylum, Elmhill HouseBuilt to accommodate private patients.


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 4Darragh, Alison2011Prison or Palace? Heaven or Hell? An architectural and social study of the development of public lunatic asylums in Scot Unpublished PhD thesis, University of St Andrewsvol 1, pp x-xiii, 59-60, 66-8, 166-80;
vol 2, pp 268-9;
vol 3, pp 19-24
Item 2 of 4Fraser, G M1918Archibald Simpson Architect and his times Aberdeen Weekly Journal, 5 April to 11 October 1918viii, xxvi
Item 3 of 4Richardson, HarrietN.D.Scottish Hospitals Survey Unpublished typescript (copy in DMW Archive) 
Item 4 of 4Sharples, J, Walker, D W and Woodworth, M2015The Buildings of Scotland: Aberdeenshire South and Aberdeen London and New Haven: Yale University Pressp223

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 6Aberdeen Journal30 October 1850  Contracts advertised for east wing
Item 2 of 6Aberdeen Journal17 May 1854  Contracts advertised for additions
Item 3 of 6Aberdeen Journal5 October 1870   
Item 4 of 6Aberdeen Journal19 May 1875   
Item 5 of 6Aberdeen Observer14 June 1833   
Item 6 of 6Architect and Building News1939July-Dec p246

Archive References

The following archives hold material relating to this building:
 SourceArchive nameSource catalogue no.Notes
Item 1 of 4Aberdeen City Archives (Copy in Public Library)Aberdeen Plans Committee Minutes Plans submitted 24 August 1893, 25 February 1897, 20 October 1898; 23 March 1899
Item 2 of 4Grampian Health BoardGrampian Health Board Archives Annual Reports
Item 3 of 4Historic Environment ScotlandListed Buildings Register20559Asylum Lodge
Item 4 of 4RIBA Archive, Victoria & Albert MuseumRIBA Nomination Papers Walter Henry Bulloch: L v6 no338 (microfilm reel 31); James Brown Nicol: F no 2514 (box 7); George Thow Smith: L v14 no923; George Dudley Stalker: A no5583 (combined box 89)