The hospital derives its name from the Aston Hall estate, which was purchased by Nottingham Corporation in 1924, although there was reportedly a military hospital in the area during the First World War, and possibly even earlier. The existing hospital was opened by the corporation in 1937. It provided care for people with learning difficulties, known at the time as, “mental defectives” and later “mentally handicapped”.
The hospital has a “villa” layout, spread over 3.2 acres of land. There are several accommodation villas as well as a purpose built leisure block and other functional buildings. This is typical of the early 1900s, when progressive ideas had replaced old style wards and corridors with a more therapeutic approach.
Villas housed approximately 50 patients each. In 1979 Aston Hall housed 478 patients and by 1985 there were 141 female and 165 male residents. At this time, the “Derby scheme” aimed to close the facility by 1995/6, with all patients being discharged into the local community (BBC Domesday). However, it wasn’t actually closed until 2004, when the final 58 patients were rehomed elsewhere.