St. George's Hospital Memories

This article was first published on the old Nurse Uniforms - Past & Present website ( around 1999-July 2018, created by Kevin Dycken. It is now offline, this is a remake in a modern look.

St George's Hospital, Tooting

Uniforms from the 1980s, text and pictures by Sarah

I worked as a Staff Nurse at St George's Hospital in Tooting , South London for a year in the mid 80s, which is when all these photos date from.

At that time Student Nurses wore: black shoes, black tights/stockings, the blue and white check "national" dress, an elasticated belt in white for 1st years, light blue for 2nd yrs and dark blue for 3rd yrs, and a plain white cardboard cap.

As Staff Nurses we wore: black shoes, black tights/stockings, a light blue dress that was the same design as the "national" but in a much better cotton-rich material, dark blue belt and silver buckle and the traditional St George's hat that was unique to that hospital. The hat defies description but you can see what I mean from the photos. We were all very proud of that hat and it is really sad that they are no longer worn. I don't know what the current St George's uniform is, does anyone have any idea?

Letter from Margaret, 7 December 2001

I agree with you uniforms aren't what they used to be and it's a shame that today's nurses don't appear to take a pride in them.

I trained as a SEN in 1969 at St. George's, a time when we folded our starched squares of linen around our feet to make a 'butterfly' hat! Try lifting patients with thst perched on your head without knocking it off!

We wore thin striped purple and white dresses with separate hard starched collars attached with collar studs, starched white aprons and starched white belts also done up with collar studs. We never wore our aprons to meals and never sat down without folding the corners in! We had to wear black stockings as black tights weren't the vogue then and black lace up shoes. We topped the uniform off with a warm, heavy woollen navy cloak with red lining with straps passing in front and buttoned behind. we were not allowed to wear the uniform outside the hospital, but all the laundry was done for us. We looked smart and felt smart and so proud to be a nurse at St. George's!

My mother has a photo of me in uniform, so will try and get a copy if you wish to put on your web page!


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