The VAD Auxiliary Hospital was opened in May 1915. The buildings used were the Towers , and the Church Hall or St Edmunds Hall also the School room.
This photograph is courtesy of Mike Bullen and
shows the wounded and their nurses outside the back doors of the school room ( with Charlie Chaplin !!)
And this second one of the interior of the school room .
Listed below are the nurses and other staff of the VAD Aux Hospital at Downham . These are records from the VAD.Redcross.co.uk site , the official records of staff .
ARTHUR ABBOTT , Bridge St , engaged 5th May 1915 . joined HM Forces .
V A ALLEN , Farnborough, Hants. 10/16 to 3 /17. (The record is lacking any further information about V A Allen ) .
MILDRED BARBER , Crow Hall Farm ; aged 20 from 1/11/18 – still serving 2/5/1919 . ( Fargo Military)
FINETTA BATHURST ( ? Finella) , Marham House, comm Downham 26/4/1918 – 24/10/1918.Sister . 3 stripes RRC , RRC 2nd Class , comm August 1914.
ALICE ROSE BENNETT, Ashville House, DM . ” Good pleasant capable ” comm April 1918 . terminated June 1919 . Also April 1917 – Nov 1917 VAD France , returned sick. rank at termination , clerk . . 24th July 1916 transf to Eastern Hospital and 28th General Hospital , France. July 1916 – Feb 1918.
HILDA MAY BENNETT ,, High St, DM , aged 24. engaged 1/1/1917 – 2/2/1918 ; Military Hospital Lakenham , Norwich.
GLADYS HILDA BEVIS c/o Mrs Hedges , Norton , Suffolk , aged 22 , 18/4/1917 – VAD Hosp DM (kitchen 18/4/1917-23/5/1919) 22/11/1917 . 23/11/1917 40 Static ( and 52) Hosp France ,, trans 31/1/1919 2nd Gen Qtrs France . . 30 Aberdeen Road , Bristol, Pay at engagement £20 , pay at Nov 1917 ,£20 . Kitchen , ward and nursing duties.
EMILY BLOMFIELD , Upper Clapton . Aug 1916 – Sept 1917 VAD Aux DM , General hospital work . 87 Eaton Sq 1916-1917 .
ETHEL BODDY , Little London , Northwold . Nov 1915 – 1 /2/1919 . Buckenham Hal, Mundford, Lynford Hall, Mundford . Sister later Matron . Ref Commandant Margaret Amherst, Norfolk 110 , VAD Aux Hosp DM .
HELEN MARGARET BOWMAN , Market Place, DM aged 18 , from March 1918- June 1919 , clerk.
MRS Lizzie May BOWMAN , Market Sq, DM , Sept 1914-Apr 1919 VAD Aux Hosp DM ,. “Getting teas ; supplying extra help Night duty 6 – 8 hours a week when required,.”
ROBERT BOWMAN , Ryston Hall Stables , DM . 5/5/1915 .VAD Aux Hosp DM .
ERNEST BOWMAN ,, Station Road, DM . Oct 1917 – 12/1918 VAD Aux DM .
Miss NELLIE HEPZIBAH RACHEL BRITTON . South Runcton , March 1918-March 1919 . Cooking .
KATIE BURDON BROWN , Sparkhill , B`ham ., July 1917 – Sept 1918. Massage sister. Nov 1917 – Sept 1918 , £1.1s, weekly . Sister Brown left to be married and is now Mrs Doherty . VAD Hosp Commandant Margarete Amhersts .
WILLIAM BROWN ,Market Hill, DM . May 1915 – 12/1918 . Orderly Transport and escort , DM VAD Aux hosp . ]
QUEENIE BUCKENHAM , Osborne House , Stoke Ferry , May – Dec 1918 . Nursing and Ward work .
WILLIAM T CANHAM , The Howdale , DM , May 1915 – May 1917 , orderly , DM VAD Aux hosp.
EMMA CARRUTHERS , 3 Cromwell Cresc , SW5 . Home was Edmonton Alta , Canada . July 1916 – June 1917 , sister, DM VAD Aux hosp ” Her husband was killed 19th Nov 1916″ worked ( Mrs Amherst) at 87 Eaton Square ; appt to the Anglo American hospital in Wimereaux .
CATHERINE CARSON , Blofield , Norwich. Oct 1914 – Aug 1918 . Hardingham Hall , VAD Aux DM , and Prince Edward , Hunstanton .
JAMES CARTER , Lynn Road, DM , May 1915 – joined the Forces 1916.
MAUD CATLIN , Methwold, Oct 1914 – April 1919 . VAD Aux Hosp DM , has also worked Buckenham Hall , Swinton House and Eaton Square .
Hon Mrs ALICIA CECIL , 2 Cadogan Square , Oct 1915 – 1919 , VAD Aux Hosp DM , Secretarial and Nursing .
ALICE EASTER CHAPMAN , Denver , aged 22 , March 1918 – Dec 1918 , cook. Catterick Military Hosp 1918 and Holborn House Military , Nov – Dec 1918 ?
JOHN O CLARK , Bridge St , DMKT , May 1915 – Dec 1918 . VAD Aux Hosp DM.
MAUD CLEMNELL, Northwold , Oct 1914 – 1919 VAD Aux DM , Buckenham and 87 Eaton Square .
MARGERY COMBE , Oxburgh Rectory , Stoke Ferry , 1916-1918 VAD Aux Hosp DM , and Narborough .
MAY COOMBE , Oxburgh Rectory , Stoke Ferry , Nursing VAD member ,,and Quartermaster , has 2 service bars . From Dec 1915 when the hospital opened to when present hospital closed in April 1919 .
CLARA COWLISHAW , Methwold, Oct 1914 – 1919 , VAD Aux Hosp General hospital duties .
MRS GRACE CRISP , Hill View , Methwold, Oct 1914 – 1919 VAD and Quartermaster , VAD Hosp DM , 6 /11/16 – 6/2/17 . 2 bars .
JOY CROXFORD , Howards Lane , Putney , 31/12/1915 – 26/4/1916 VAD DM ,, from 5/1917 . Sister. Has since joined Canadian AMC ; mentioned.Miss GWENDOLINE DAVIS , 23 Lowndes Sq , 15/6/1917 VAD DM , Pantry , wards, secretarial , and 87 Eaton Sq , and K E Vll ; 1 bar .
ELIZABETH de BEAUMONT , Claremont House , ,Methwold , 1915 – 1917 , VAD DM , Buckenham Hall , Mundford .