St Clements - A Brief History

St Clements Hospital was a mental health hospital in Bow, East End of London. The building opened in a former workhouse building as the City of London Union Infirmary in 1874. In 1902 it had 511 beds. The palatial design of the workhouse had been created by architect Richard Tress and had cost over £55,000 to construct. It had central heating, a dining-hall measuring 100 feet by 50 feet, Siberian marble pillars, and a chapel with stained glass windows and an organ. It closed in 1909 but re-opened as a hospital for chronically ill people as the City of London Institution in 1912 and as the Bow Institution in 1913.

During WW2, when the hospital had 397 beds, it was badly damaged by bombing in 1944. It became a psychiatric unit, known as St Clement’s Hospital in 1936 and joined the National Health Service in 1948. It came under the same management as the London Hospital in 1968. After services were transferred to a new Adult Mental Health Facility at Mile End Hospital, the hospital closed in 2005.

St Clements is now a large residential development of 252 homes, of which 58 are for social rent managed by Peabody, and 23 are Community Land Trust homes.