Woodilee Winter by Karl Williams

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Woodilee, Kirkintilloch.

This was the site of what used to be a “lunatic asylum” (not a description we tend to use these days) at the turn of the 20th century, and which was latterly converted to an NHS hospital. The hospital was closed in the 1990s with many of the buildings being demolished. A few, like the one shown, remained for several years.

Although those that remained were so-called “listed” buildings (to remain for posterity on account of their architectural qualities), the local council allowed them to fall into disrepair to the extent that demolition was permissable on the grounds of “health and safety” .. the (regrettable) normal ploy in these circumstances.

Since this shot was taken, the building shown has been demolished and site has been completely cleared for a new housing estate.


I’m an award-winning landscape photographer based near Glasgow in Scotland.

To view my full portfolio, please visit my website at karlwilliamsphotography.co.uk

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  • joak
    joakalmost 5 years ago

    smashin karl and guid story..we have a similar thing happening at what used tae be belsdyke hospital in larbert there is a couple of amazin buildings in that place fallin tae bits

  • David Mould
    David Mouldalmost 5 years ago

    Very sad Karl… and having spent seven years working there… a disgrace.
    Im sure i looked out of this window on many occasions… a great loss indeed!!.. cracking historical documentation.
    If anyone is interested there is a fantastic exhibition at the Kelvingrove Art Galleries and Museum about the old psychiatric hospitals.. well worth a look!

  • You’ll notice the bars on the windows have been removed, Mouldy .. just after they let you out into the community to become a drug dealer …

    – Karl Williams

  • Anna D'Accione
    Anna D'Accionealmost 5 years ago

    Funny how councils work, beautiful architecture alowed to get to the point of disrepair. We have the same thing happening (not quite to this extent) at Morisset another old psych hospital. (because it is on very desirable land near a lake)
    A beautiful image, thank you for preserving it. Great work!!!

  • leealanjudy
    leealanjudyalmost 5 years ago

    Great shot! Sad about the buildings being let go!

  • Dawn B Davies-McIninch
    Dawn B Davies-...almost 5 years ago

    wonderful new picture, so gorgeous,dawnx

  • biddumy
    biddumyalmost 5 years ago
    TRAGIC, I have had some relatives who worked there, beautiful capture of what’s left!!!
  • David Lewins
    David Lewinsalmost 5 years ago

    Some wonderful tones and textures Karl and you have certainly preserved its image for posterity. Excellent history and building too, some wonderful architectural qualities. I feel rather sad for David, having been an “inmate” there, he must have thought of it as home! ;-) Ooo’ps Don’t tell him I said that!

  • He’s been told that many times, David .. I have to get my own back for all the “old fart” jibes I receive from him!

    – Karl Williams

  • micklyn
    micklynalmost 5 years ago

    fantastic capture, gorgeous processing, fascinating description ( :

  • Lynden
    Lyndenalmost 5 years ago

    Karl, this is brilliant, I wish I was half a good!!

  • David Haworth
    David Haworthalmost 5 years ago

    Like a postcard. You are lucky to have lunatic asylums abandoned across England and Europe. We let ours roam free in Australia I think. No relics!

  • We let ours out to govern the country, David .. that’s why we’re skint!

    – Karl Williams

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