Alder Hey Children's Hospital

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Alder Hey Children's Hospital
Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust
Alder Hey Hospital - - 37393.jpg
Location Eaton Road, Liverpool, L12 2AP
Coordinates 53°25′14″N 2°53′48″W / 53.42053°N 2.89677°W / 53.42053; -2.89677Coordinates: 53°25′14″N 2°53′48″W / 53.42053°N 2.89677°W / 53.42053; -2.89677
Care system NHS
Hospital type Specialist
Affiliated university University of Liverpool, Liverpool John Moores University
Emergency department Yes Accident & Emergency; Children's Major Trauma Centre
Beds 309 [1]
Speciality Children's hospital
Founded 1914

Alder Hey Children's Hospital is a major children's hospital and NHS foundation trust located in the suburb of West Derby; in the city of Liverpool, England. It is one of the largest children's hospitals in the United Kingdom and Europe, and one of several specialist hospitals located within the Liverpool City Region; alongside Liverpool Women's Hospital, Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, The Walton Centre, and Clatterbridge Cancer Centre.

The hospital is currently being rebuilt in neighbouring Springfield Park in a £237 million pound scheme. The new hospital began construction on 21 January 2013, and is expected to opened by Summer 2015; where it will be renamed as Alder Hey Children's Health Park. The original Alder Hey buildings will then be demolished and the land reclaimed as new parkland for the surrounding community.[2]


The hospital was founded in 1914 and is one of the largest children's hospitals in Europe.

During the First World War, the United States Army established Camp Hospital 40 on the site, operated by Hospital Unit Q and, subsequently, Unit W. American sources commonly refer to Alder Hey as being within Liverpool's Knotty Ash area.

The hospital acquired the prefix 'Royal' in 1985 and became an NHS hospital trust in 1991. It currently employs about 2,400 staff and treats over 200,000 children each year.

During the 1990s it was featured in the BBC television series Children's Hospital.


In 1978, the charity Art For Their Sake,[3] a team of volunteer artists led by founder George Nicholas (now of Ormskirk, England), produced the world's longest mural in the corridors of Alder Hey Children's Hospital. A Guinness Record was set with a total of 17,963 square feet of murals, and awarded to the hospital in 1986. Nicholas and his team continued to work on these murals for a period of 30 years, adding to as well as restoring and maintaining, for a total of over 34,000 square feet.

Today, a charity, 'imagine', raises funds to assist the hospital's work and to provide art work there.

In one instance, the sound recordist and musician Chris Watson was employed to devise an art project, using bird song recordings made by children to calm other young patients as they received injections and other treatments.[4][5]

Organ scandal[edit]

In 1999 an enquiry was instituted to investigate the hospital's practices in respect of removal and retention of human tissue. The enquiry had far-reaching effects throughout the UK hospital system (see Alder Hey organs scandal for more details).

Heston's Mission Impossible[edit]

In 2011, chef Heston Blumenthal took to the challenge of changing the dinner menu of Alder Hey Children's hospital on his televised show, Heston's Mission Impossible.[6]

Quality of Care[edit]

In October 2013 as a result of the Keogh Review the Trust was put into the highest risk category by the Care Quality Commission[7]


External links[edit]

Media related to Alder Hey Hospital at Wikimedia Commons