London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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London County Council 1927

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for London County Council]

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The period of observation, reckoned from the date of the first to the date of
the last examination by the assistant medical officers, varied according to necessity
from one to three, or even more years, and in every instance, where observation
has been completed, the form M.0.333 has been returned to the tuberculosis officer,
so that a re-nomination could be made.

An analysis of 500 cases in respect of the period of observation shows the following:—

Years.-11- 22-33-44Died.Refused examination.

Open-air Education.
The provision for Open-air Education during the past year included six day
open-air schools for non-tuberculous children, accommodation, 1,200; seven-day
open-air schools for tuberculous children, accommodation, 540; five country or
seaside convalescent camp schools, accommodating 484 children for short periods,
providing for about 4,700 children annually; and 151 open-air classes in parks or
playgrounds in connection with ordinary elementary schools, providing for about
4,000 children.
Day open-air
The five established open-air schools for non-tuberculous children at Aspen House
(Brixton), Brent Knoll (Forest Hill), Bow Road (Poplar), Shooter's Hill (Woolwich),
and Stowey House (Clapham Common), have continued open throughout the year,
with the exception of the normal school holidays. In addition, the school at Holly
Court (Hampstead), with accommodation for 130 children, was opened on 18th July,
1927. This school occupies an ideal site, overlooking the Heath, and placed under
the direction of Mr. Williamson, transferred from Bow Road, has made a most
auspicious beginning. Preparations are in hand for the establishment of three
further open-air schools at Upton House (Hackney), at Du Cane Road (Hammersmith),
and on the new housing estate at Downham (Lewisham).
Aspen House
Aspen House was opened on the 23rd November, 1925. The head master, Mr.
I.G. Jones, in his report to the Managing Committee in November, 1927, gives the
following account of the activities followed in the open-air and the general medical
"In a new school of a type such as ours splendid opportunities are afforded for
manual work, and it has been our aim in woodwork to employ boys in the making of
articles necessary for the conveniences of the children and for improving the equipment
of the school. Although our classrooms are open-sided shelters which cannot
be closed, yet it is much pleasanter to work in the open-air without a roof overhead
whenever possible. We were thus faced with the necessity for 'stands' for open-air
class sites and for providing raised paths in wet weather. Eighty large duckboards
or wooden slats were made; measured and cut by the bigger boys and nailed
together by the smaller ones. Frames were made for iron scrapers, and these were
found invaluable in the early months of the school's existence. Coat-racks, toothbrush
racks, soap boxes, carrier boxes with handles for gardening purposes (usable
instead of wheelbarrows and much more serviceable), provided opportunities for the
initiative of the boys, for the use of an assortment of tools and for learning to make
simple joints. In addition, the boys realised that they were partaking in efforts
toward the improvement of their school. Later, work which required more skill and
accuracy, was attempted, and among the tasks undertaken was the making of clog
stands, a bird table, a sunshine recorder and stand, moulds for concrete work, a sundial,
and bathroom equipment."