|A post for Diane whose mother worked at the Reception House in the 50s and 60s|
Constructed in 1867, the Darlinghurst Reception House was to help the expanding city cater for the needs of the psychiatrically impaired (lunatics) rather than tossing them into gaol. Located on the corner of Forbes and Burton Streets Darlinghurst, it was constructed opposite the Darlinghurst Gaol and next to the Police Station. The gaol was at the rear of the Supreme Court of NSW. In 1958 its name changed to the Darlinghurse Admission Centre, but was closed down completely in 1961 when a larger facility was opened in the suburb of Ryde.
On a triangular handkerchief of land, the original building is now jammed with unsightly additions, temporary and not so. It is surrounded by fences and walls. It is officially named the Caritas Centre of St Vincent's Hospital, but also houses the Anxiety Disorders Clinic and the Professional Unit in Psychiatry of the University of New South Wales.
Tomorrow, come with me as I wander across the road and into the old Darlinghurst Gaol.