A Princess By Any Other Name
Hello Sarah, My husband and I have just spent two nights in Hanmer Springs and whilst there I opened the latest edition of NZTODAY which had arrived earlier in the week. I was particularly interested in reading Allan Dick’s article “A Camping Extravaganza – The Grande Tour” as we too have toured the South Island with our caravan but always looking out for places we may have missed or need to revisit.
Many of the places Allan Dick stopped at we are familiar with, especially Hanmer Springs where we stay frequently. I was surprised however on reading about Hanmer, that Allan referred to the Hospital there as Princess Margaret Hospital (see pg. 86) when in fact it is the Queen Mary Hospital.
It was built by the Department of Defence in 1916 on the site of a previous 1897 sanatorium and was used for convalescent soldiers returned from World War I. Later, the hospital was used for hydrotherapy and treatment of functional nervous disorders until 1971, and then as an alcoholic rehabilitation centre.
In 1968, my mother suffered from a mental breakdown (probably now determined as suffering from depression) and was sent to Queen Mary Hospital for treatment for three months. She didn’t speak very often about her stay there, as some of the treatment she received was very harsh and she didn’t want to keep the memories.
I am a fairly recent subscriber to NZTODAY, having seen a copy at a friend’s home, but just think it’s great. I often don’t open it to read until I know that I will have some “me” time to read it in peace and quiet. Regards Inga Cotton P.S. I was surprised that Allan Dick whilst at Okarito on the West Coast, did not mention Andris (Andy) Apse who lives there with his partner Lynne Bond. Andris is one of New Zealand’s most distinguished landscape photographers. Perhaps, a story of its own for the future? E ED. Hi Inga and thank you for your l letter. Hanmer is a fabulous spot, n not the least because of its hot p pools. Thank you for clarifying t the name of the hospital. I also m mentioned a bit about the history of the Queen Mary Hospital in my recent Molesworth Station story… let’s hope I got the name right. Perhaps Allan was confusing it with the Princess Margaret Hospital in Christchurch, or perhaps he has a soft spot for the Queen’s late younger sister?