Forest Town

Roundwood Surgery on Ellesmere Road 2007
P Marples
Dr Tweedie
Private Collection
Early Shop Advert
Private Collection

Doctors Surgery Ellesmere Road

The Chad newspaper in November 2006 reported on plans to turn a house on Ellesmere Road into a temporary doctor’s surgery, and the concerns over car parking for patients. It also said there was a need for this facility in Forest Town.

While the village had been without a Doctors and Health Centre for a number of years it has not always been the case. Read on to discover information on the various Doctors,their surgeries, and concern in previous years.

Surgery inthe Avenues

An article in a church magazine about one of the first village surgeries reveals concern for ‘waiting patients.’ This surgery was in a house in the Avenues where Dr Houfton attended the need of the community. Few people will remember Dr Houfton but many still remember a later doctor, Dr Tweedie, and they even recall the treatment he gave them.

The surgery was still being used in November 1949 when Rev. John Spencer wrote: in St Alban’s Church magazine

Dear Friends of Forest Town,

I was so distressed to hear of the sick and infirm waiting out in the street for admission to Dr Tweedie’s surgery on Second Avenue, that I have taken sole responsibility for opening the Church Hall to patients awaiting surgery from 8.30am each morning except Sundays….There seemed to be a great need in this particular instance. The rain was pouring down the morning the Doctor approached me and I felt no other course than to lend the room for a temporary measure. The Church Council will have to confirm or reject the step I have taken…

Whether the Church Council approved or not is unknown. The Church Hall that is talked about was the old Mission Church building that was next to St Alban’s Church.

Surgery on Clipstone Road West

Through the years Forest Town has had a number of Doctors surgeries, one in the Avenues as previously mentioned, and also among the shops and houses on Clipstone Road West. Linney’s Directory of 1930 lists Dr Preston and Dr Gray there. Little is known of those two doctors but when asking local people about the surgery or surgeries on Clipstone Road West some interesting memories were revealed:

‘Dr Gettlestone had a surgery there, it was in Stan Wilsons front room, it was between the shops and the bottom of George Street.’

‘In the 1950’s Dr O’Connoll had a surgery up an alley between the Post Office and Terry Allsops shop. We used to sit outside on a form, waiting to see him, it could be very cold. Dr Ellis and Dr O’Donovan took over this surgery and later moved to the Health Centre.’

Health Centre

A Health Centre, which was situated behind the Library, opened in 1964 and for around forty years various Doctors held surgeries there. When this closed only a short time ago Forest Town was left without a doctors surgery. On and off there have been rumours of a new health centre, however it seems that once again it is a house that has been the immediate answer to local health care needs.

Surgery in a former shop

Interestingly the house on Ellesmere Road, which has now become a surgery, has seen many changes since it was built in the early 1930’s. Originally it was a house and general grocers, and the first owners were Harry and Charlotte Parkin. They retired in the 1940’s. Ernest and May Bingley were the next owners. The 1976 Linney’s Directory list the premises as ‘Alliance Food Store’, and while the shop may have had other owners since then, including being a bakery, it is in recent years that the house and shop were converted into one large house and eventually put up for sale.

Roundwood Surgery

The new surgery on Ellesmere Road which is part of the Mansfield Roundwood Surgery was opened on Wednesday 25th April 2007 by Mrs Margaret Hughes, wife of the late Tony Hughes who had been a key worker with the Primary Care Trust in Mansfield.

Time will tell how long these premises remain a Doctors Surgery


[Early advert for Bingley’s shop]

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