by Monica Hammond
Edward Cridge was involved in the earliest days of what is now the Royal Jubilee Hospital. In 1858 a sick man was found lying on a mattress in the Cridges’ garden. Edward and his wife Mary cared for him, and realized that there was a need in their community for a medical facility. Edward made use of his connections in the community to open a care centre in Blinkhorn’s, a rented cottage at the corner of Yates and Broad Streets in downtown Victoria. Governor James Douglas helped to fund it. The number of patients at Blinkhorn’s grew quickly, and the facility moved to a building on the Songhees Reserve. These were the simple beginnings of what is now the Royal Jubilee Hospital.
This piece is based on the work of Vernon Storey, Terry Worobetz and Henry Kennedy in their book The Home: Orphans’ Home to Family Centre: 1873 to 1998. Copies of the book are available for purchase at The Cridge Centre for the Family.