To accommodate the great number of injured soldiers returning from the Front during the First World War, 3,000 auxiliary military hospitals and convalescent homes sprang up across the country. Many of these hospitals were based in private houses, schools and asylums and operated as annexes to larger hospitals nearby.
In 1916, Rosslyn Lodge on Lyndhurst Road was lent to the Red Cross by Herbert Hill for use as an auxiliary military hospital. The hospital received mainly bedridden patients, who were encouraged to use the gardens, as illustrated by the pictures in the photo album. A new ward was opened in 1917 by Madame Clara Butt, and photographs of this occasion are included in the album. It also contains pictures of some of the 2,227 patients treated from 1916-1919, as well as the nurses and staff who cared for them. By the time the hospital closed, 43 trained nurses, 4 full-time and 30 part-time VADs were working there.
After the war, Rosslyn Lodge was returned to its owner, and is now the headquarters for the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts.