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Fort Pitt


History of Fort Pitt in Chatham Kent and the Army Medical School



In 1860 the first Army Medical School was established at Fort Pitt in Chatham, Kent, England (cited in Soldier Magazine 6 October 1996). Prior to this army doctors would be posted directly to their units and regiments, often with little or no military training. Those who did get army doctor training would have been sent to York Hospital in Chelsea or the General Invaliding Hospital on the Isle of Wight.

Though Wars, Pestilence and the Surgeon's Blade. The Evolution of British Military Medicine and Surgery during the Nineteenth Century. (Helion Studies in Military History) cites that in order to improve hospital administration and education facilities York Hospital in London was closed due to the location, in the centre of London, was inconvenient for the transport of patients. A site accessible by ships was also needed. They further cite that the new hospital at Fort Pitt in Chatham, near the mouth of the River Medway, had nine wards with accommodation for 200 patients. Sir James McGrigor, Director General of Army Medical Services opened a museum with anatomical, anthropological, botanical and pathological sections. Sadly his ambition of opening an Army Medical School could not be fulfilled in his lifetime due to the expense of the Peninsular War.

Fort Pitt was formerly a hospital for invalid soldiers in 1828. An asylum was added in 1849.



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The Drummer Boy The Drummer Boy continues the adventures of QARANC nurse, Scott Grey, who has the special gift of seeing military ghosts. In this novel he is haunted by the ghost of a Gordon Highlander Drummer Boy from the Battle of Waterloo. It is based on the legends of the Tidworth Military Hospital Drummer Boy.


Chapters take place in modern day Aberdeen, at the Noose & Monkey bar and restaurant as well as His Majesty’s Theatre and Garthdee. Other scenes take place at Tidworth and during the Napoleonic War where I describe battlefield medical care of this era.


Read the first three chapters for free on most devices.


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In 1863 the Army Medical School moved to the newly opened Royal Victoria Military Hospital Netley and then moved to the Royal Army Medical College Millbank in 1907.

The Fort Pitt area is now a Grammar School.


If you would like to contribute any info or photographs then please contact me.





Forces War Records

Forces War Records are a genealogy site where you can find military records of over 6 million British Armed Forces personnel cross matched with over 4000 Regiments, Bases and Ships. This link includes a free search and a special discount of 40% off membership offer for visitors who use the discount code AF40 if they decide to become a member.
Search Now. A unique feature is their WW1 Soldiers Medical Records section.







If you would like to contribute to this page, suggest changes or inclusions to this website or would like to send me a photograph then please e-mail me.



Official QARANC webpage.

QA Association website.

In The Company of Nurses Book.


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The Grey Lady Ghost of the Cambridge Military Hospital Novel - a Book by CG Buswell


The Drummer Boy Novel


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