The National Anti-Vivisection Hospital opened to patients in 1903, the only district hospital in London not financed by state-controlled funds, which refused it support because of its principles. For three decades the hospital treated the local poor and conscientious objectors to vivisection, who were assured that staff pledged not to experiment on animals or patients. After an overambitious building program, the hospital ran into financial difficulties, and the King’s Fund refused to help unless all references to antivivisection were removed from its statutes. Thus it reopened as Battersea General in 1935, continuing to serve the borough until 1972.

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