Headley Court

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Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Headley Court
Near Epsom, Surrey in England
DMRC Headley Court
DMRC Headley Court
Headley crest.png
Per Mutua
(Latin for By Mutual)
DMRC Headley Court is located in Surrey
DMRC Headley Court
DMRC Headley Court
Location within Surrey
Coordinates 51°17′13.3″N 000°17′06.3″W / 51.287028°N 0.285083°W / 51.287028; -0.285083Coordinates: 51°17′13.3″N 000°17′06.3″W / 51.287028°N 0.285083°W / 51.287028; -0.285083
Type Military medical rehabilitation centre
Area 30 hectares
Site information
Owner Ministry of Defence
Operator Joint Forces Command
Controlled by Defence Medical Services
Condition Operational
Site history
Built 1899 (1899)
In use Royal Air Force (1946-1985)
Defence Medical Services (1985-present)
Listed Building – Grade II
Official name Headley Court and attached former stables
Designated 18 July 2001[1]
Reference no. 1389265

Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre Headley Court (abbreviated to DMRC Headley Court, and more commonly known as Headley Court), formerly RAF Headley Court, is an 85-acre (34 ha) United Kingdom Ministry of Defence facility in Headley, near Epsom, Surrey, England.

It is used as a rehabilitation centre for injured members of the British Armed Forces.

History and overview

Headley Court was an Elizabethan farm house bought by the Cunliffe family, from Tyrrell's Wood, Leatherhead. They later sold this farm house and built in 1899 the imposing mansion at the centre of Headley Court to the north, namely under Lord Cunliffe, who was Chairman of the Bank of England.[2] Its architect was Edward Warren. During World War II, it was used as the Headquarters for the VII Corps and then for the Canadian Corps.[3] Since the war, it has been used as a Royal Air Force and Joint Services medical rehabilitation centre.[4] During the war, nearby Headley Heath was used as a training ground for engineers building airstrips and trench systems then demolishing them again.

Purchased after that war with money from the Royal Air Force Pilots and Crews Fund, a public collection as a tribute to the deeds, including the Battle of Britain efforts of the RAF, Headley Court lost its social club focus to expand its medical and rehabilitation credentials and become the Defence Services Medical Rehabilitation Centre (DMRC), which aims to return all those service personnel injured or seriously ill to full fitness.

During the 2002 UK Firefighter strike, two Green Goddess fire engines were based at RAF Headley Court. If called upon, the crews would have had to wait for Surrey Police to escort them to a fire.

In November 2005, the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall visited the centre. They met Major David Bradley of the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment who had been given a five per cent chance of survival, after coming under fire from a Rocket Propelled Grenade launcher (RPG) in Basra, southern Iraq in 2004.[5] Other notable patients in 2006/2007 include Sgt Mark Sutcliffe, The Royal Anglian Regiment, Sgt Stuart Pearson, 3 PARA and many others.

In July 2014, the Minister of Defence, Philip Hammond, announced that the services provided by Headley Court would be transferred to a new centre to be developed at Stanford Hall. The opening of the new Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre by the Duke of Cambridge took place in June 2018.[6] The future of the buildings at Headley Court is in the hands of the Headley Court Trust.

Facilities

Headley Court

Rehabilitation staff average around 200 per year from all three services' medical and nursing branches, the longest established here being Princess Mary's Royal Air Force Nursing Service. These comprise specialist medical officers, nurses, remedial instructors, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech and language therapists, a cognitive therapist, social workers, engineers, and administration support staff. Not only does the centre deal with patients with new physical disabilities but it also deals with patients suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

The rehabilitation areas of the unit consist of hydrotherapy pools, gymnasiums, and workshops for prosthetics. The high, wooded countryside setting and grounds of the unit have been welcomed by staff and those recovering; Headley Heath and the North Downs Way share the escarpment and there is a high concentration of woodland wildlife.

The 28 bed[7] Peter Long Ward has single showers and nursing staff on call 24 hours a day, internet access and a kitchen area with washing and drying facilities for clothing. A further large ward opened in September 2010 of 30 beds, rest areas and equipment.

Headley Court was in need of further facilities, particularly a full size swimming pool, as patients had to share a leisure centre in Leatherhead.[8] The charity Help for Heroes was set up in late 2007, with a first objective of raising money to build these facilities.[9] A new gym, swimming pool and lower limbs treatment area opened within two years.

References

  1. ^ England, Historic. "HEADLEY COURT AND ATTACHED FORMER STABLES, Headley - 1389265| Historic England". historicengland.org.uk. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  2. ^ Headley Court - Grade II -Historic England. "Details from listed building database (1389265)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  3. ^ "On Guard in Britain, 1940-1941". The Department of National Defense, Government of Canada. Retrieved 13 February 2016. 
  4. ^ Walk in Tadworth
  5. ^ Prince of Wales news
  6. ^ "Handover of the gift of the Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre by the Duke of Westminster". DNRC. 
  7. ^ Princess Mary's Royal Air Force Nursing Service - Headley Court
  8. ^ Disabled veterans jeered at swimming pool - Telegraph
  9. ^ Help for Heroes

External links

  • Forces Reunited
  • Help for Heroes - Headley Court Gallery
  • Gentleman, Amelia (5 November 2010). "Headley Court: Inside Britain's military rehabilitation centre". London: The Guardian. 
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