Bedlam - Beechworth Lunatic Asylum c1878 - The HDR Experience by Philip Johnson
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Bedlam - Beechworth Lunatic Asylum c1878 - The HDR Experience by 


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Beehworth is located in the historic gold mining area of the Australian State of Victoria

Beechworth Hotel, built in 1876 and largely intact, was once Beechworth Lunatic Asylum. All it took to be classified a lunatic was to refuse or be unable to answer a judge’s or police sergeant’s questions!

A story is told of a 11 year old boy who was sentenced to the Asylum, he died there at the age of 84 !

The asylum was later renamed Mayday Hills Hospital and operated as one of country Victoria’s major asylums until 1995. A walk around the property has 15 interpretative sign boards providing historical facts.

It is now a campus of La Trobe University, run as a hotel and conference centre. Its magnificent gardens date to 1878, the result of the hard work of landscape gardener John T Tozer and inmates of the asylum. Improvements were undertaken in 1912 and again in 1930 when many exotic shrub and tree species were planted. Some of its native eucalypti are believed to be over 200 years old and one 55-metre Douglas fir is the tallest tree in the garden. Extensive plantings of rhododendrons and azaleas have thrived. The Grand Oak drive is one of the garden’s most outstanding features.

At its peak the asylum that dates back to 1867, held 1200 patients. More then 3000 people died within it’s 3m- high walls. Some died peacefully, but there are others, like the women thrown from one of the towers by her fellow patients, that haunt the imagination and, according to one visitor, the main building.

This picture shows the Women’s block, which is closed due to the state of the building, which still has the original cells.

Ghost tours are run of this site by lantern light well worth the expense

Philip Johnson is a Photographer located on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. Specialising in HDR photography his works have been shown in galleries,published in Tourism campaigns. His work will also be available as Jig Saws through Crown & Andrews Australia

Winner of the Art Unlimited Photography prize 2012

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Comments

  • Smudger
    Smudgerover 6 years ago

    wonderful work – steve ;-))

  • Tracy Faught
    Tracy Faughtover 6 years ago

    Very cool and creepy and interseting! :]

  • C J Lewis
    C J Lewisover 6 years ago

    Amazing shot and very interesting history, thanks Philip :)

  • barnsis
    barnsisover 6 years ago

    Excellent, you know this would fit well in
    Remember When Images there have to have a story with them and yours is excellent.

  • Cherubtree
    Cherubtreeover 6 years ago

    Wow….very intense energy in this one. Great capture!!

  • David Robinson
    David Robinsonover 6 years ago

    Fabulous image and thanks for the historical detail .. great stuff!

  • Jonathan Bartlett
    Jonathan Bartlettover 6 years ago

    excellent shot Philip!

  • Of Land & Ocean - Samantha Goode
    Of Land & Ocea...over 6 years ago

    Great capture Philip. Did you know there is a group? Abandoned Asylums & Hospitals

  • thanks Sam yes i know that group , the host has a predjudice against HDR so we had some spirited discussions lol

    – Philip Johnson

  • ej29
    ej29over 6 years ago

    Excellent work Phillip!!!

  • Of Land & Ocean - Samantha Goode
    Of Land & Ocea...over 6 years ago

    lol oh dear!

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