Over the next few days St. John’s Prep and Senior School, based in Enfield, Potters Bar, will provide reviews from the school’s recent Visits Day.
Below is the review from the Upper Sixth Forms visit to the London Dungeon.
St John’s Senior School students visited the London Dungeon in the morning of their Visits Day before making their way to the Old Operating theatre in London Bridge.
The entrance that led us up was a very narrow, steep and spiral staircase. Once up in the main building, the group spent time looking at the various old
medical artefacts and objects.
An extremely interesting browse around stimulated many questions and points of thought of what surgery must have been like many years ago.
For the talk, the group entered the Old Operating Theatre Room, which was a large room with a viewing gallery, in which the group sat. The lady giving the speech was a very good historian who specialised in the history of medicine. The talk started with a warning that some of the content does sometime make people feel sick or feint!
The talk proceeded with a brief history of the old hospitals, the likely patients and the most common procedures such as bladder stone removal or amputations.
The talk went in to great detail about the horrors of surgery in the 19th century. The appalling hygiene and lack of any pain relief and aesthetic was what stood out in the group’s thoughts. The talk ended in a question and answer session.
The Upper Sixth Form group left with a solid understanding of how the perception of pain, suffering and death has dramatically shifted over the past 200 years. Everyone in the group is now much more thankful and aware for the recent advances in science and medicine.