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Cotford St Luke Parish Council

Before 1995 – The Psychiatric Hospital

Photo supplied by Jane Hinton

The opportunity to develop Cotford St Luke arose from the closure of the NHS Tone Vale Hospital in 1995.  The following is a brief summary of the hospital’s existence.

Under the name Somerset and Bath Asylum, it admitted its first patients in 1897.  It continued in various ways as a psychiatric hospital for patients across Somerset until March 1995 when it was closed as a result of the policy  ‘Care in the Community’.


Over time it developed into more than simply a hospital – it comprised a working farm, landscaped grounds with an impressive collection of trees, with homes for senior administrative staff; a home for the nurses; a staff clubhouse; large ball room used for major local events; and a chapel.   There is also a burial ground, today marked by an engraved stone placed there at the request of the Cotford St Luke Community Association.

Photo supplied by Jane HintonThe main hospital building comprised a central administrative section with two wings, one for male the other for female patients – keeping the sexes separate.  This segregation extended to the chapel; attendance was compulsory with segregation imposed by separate entrances for men and women.  At its peak the hospital cared for over 1,300 patients.

Photo supplied by Jane HintonThe hospital is remembered today through Cotford St Luke’s roads that are named after its staff.   Its first medical superintendent was Dr Henry Aveline whose names appears in Aveline Court; others are remembered through Venn Close, Bethell Mead, Stutts end, Needhams Patch and so on.


The book The Tone Vale Story: A Century of Care,[14] edited by David Hinton and Fred Clarke gives an account of the hospital’s history.  A more personal and unflattering account is to be found in The Light in My Mind, the memoir of Joyce Passmore.  There is also a detailed entry in

Photo supplied by Jane Hinton

Upcoming Events

6:30 pm Badminton @ Community Hall
Badminton @ Community Hall
Feb 19 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm
Mondays 6.30-8.30pm : Cotford Badminton Club, Cotford Community Hall.  If you’re 16-70 and fancy a game, do come along and give it a try, or just come along to watch first if you prefer.  Contact[...]
6:30 pm Karate Club @ Community Hall
Karate Club @ Community Hall
Feb 19 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Term time only   All event details are provided to the best of our knowledge at the time of updating the website. We suggest you contact the event organiser prior to attending to avoid disappointment.
5:30 pm Brownies @ Community Hall
Brownies @ Community Hall
Feb 20 @ 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm
Brownies in Cotford St Luke is held on Tuesdays in term time, in the small village hall. Brownies starts at 5:30pm and finishes at 7pm, and is for girls aged 7 to 10 years old.[...]
7:15 pm Pilates @ School Hall
Pilates @ School Hall
Feb 20 @ 7:15 pm – 8:15 pm
Pilates is suitable for all ages and abilities . It is an excellent way to help improve posture , strength and flexibility. Term-time only.   All event details are provided to the best of our[...]
4:45 pm Pilates with Susanna @ Community Hall
Pilates with Susanna @ Community Hall
Feb 21 @ 4:45 pm – 7:00 pm
Two Mixed ability pilates classes on Wednesday evenings at the times detailed below: 4.45 – 5.45pm 6 – 7pm For more details contact Susanna on the details above or see her facebook page /pilatesbysusanna  [...]