Broadmoor was opened in 1863 - the first institution in England built specifically for the 'criminally insane'. Based in Crowthorne, the site originally covered 290 acres and was set behind forbidding high walls. It was designed by Sir Joshua Jebb.
A drawing from August 1867 shows the day room reserved for male patients at Broadmoor Hospital. Infamous Victorian inmates over the years include Edward Oxford, convicted for an assassination attempt on Queen Victoria in 1840.
Broadmoor has had many escapees over the years, including serial killer John Straffen who murdered infant Linda Bowyer from Farley Hill, Berkshire, when he escaped in 1952. He was free for four hours before being recaptured. He died in November 2007.
In 1952 security was stepped up after Straffen's escape. Now there is a siren at the hospital - if it sounds, local schools and institutions have to lock their doors. A cordon is also set up around Crowthorne and each car checked by police.
This photo from 12 May 1956 shows a female patient's room, which has bars on the windows and is always visible through a long slit in the door. Broadmoor first housed 95 female patients, with a block for male patients following a year later in 1864.
William Chester Minor spent 38 years at Broadmoor from 1872 after fatally shooting a man. He is famous for his considerable scholarly contributions to the Oxford English Dictionary, spending 20 years providing quotations with which to illustrate words.
Arguably the most infamous current resident is Peter Sutcliffe, a serial killer dubbed The Yorkshire Ripper following his conviction in 1981 for murdering 13 women and attacking several others. He was sent to Broadmoor in March 1984.
A photo from May 1956 shows a patient making a doll's house in the Handicraft Centre. This activity is a far cry from Broadmoor's original purpose as a prison-like asylum. Broadmoor changed from institution to hospital after the 1948 Criminal Justice Act.
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