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Roehampton - Queen Mary’s Hospital

During wars in the 1900s large numbers of soldiers had similar injuries and specialist hospitals were established to treat them. Roehampton was set up at the Queen Mary’s Hospital as a specialist centre for fitting prosthetic limbs to soldiers from the First World War - over 41,000 men lost limbs during that conflict.

The basement and huts in the grounds housed a number of limb-makers who manufactured limbs for the soldiers. After the limbs were made, the patient would learn how to use them, walking with prosthetic legs in the gymnasium or using his new arms in the workshop. These soldiers would often be retrained for different jobs.


Between the wars Roehampton treated civilians who had lost limbs in industry. In the Second World War, Roehampton continued to service the needs of those who had lost limbs - twenty thousand soldiers and two thousand civilians. Douglas Bader was one of the most famous patients who attended Roehampton. Queen Mary’s Roehampton remained a major centre for limb fitting during more recent wars.

Related Themes and Topics



H Alper (ed.), A History of Queen Mary’s University Hospital Roehampton (Roehampton: The Trust, 1997)

L Gillies, ‘Fifty years of rehabilitation at Queen Mary’s Hospital Roehampton’, Rehabilitation, 61 (April-June 1967), pp 5-20



Artificial body parts, or materials inserted into tissue for functional, cosmetic, or therapeutic effect. Prostheses can be functional (artificial arms and legs), or cosmetic (artificial eye).