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Qube Gallery shines light on Hospital Heroes (28th August 2015)

Qube Gallery shines light on Hospital Heroes

An exciting new digital visual art experience called, ‘Fracture’, is to be unveiled on September 10 at Qube Gallery, Oswestry.

An exciting new digital visual art experience called, ‘Fracture’, is to be unveiled on September 10 at Qube Gallery, Oswestry. The exhibition, in partnership with the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic hospital celebrates the lives of Sir Robert Jones and local heroine, Dame Agnes Hunt who between them revolutionised the world of modern orthopaedics and nursing rehabilitation.

The story is one of determination, selfless ambition and friendship. Together they left a legacy by founding a world-class hospital and by developing new practices and standards of care and professionalism still used today.

Arts collaborators, Justin Cliffe and Peter Farago take us on a journey of discovery in this unique and engaging, interactive exhibition. Local actor and director, Justin said: “We really wanted to bring the story to life. We’ve woven together historic images with newly created film snapshots, re-created with actors. The result is a mini-universe of sound and film for gallery visitors to experience.”

Robert Jones was an eminent surgeon who was related to his mentor, the renowned Welsh surgeon, Hugh Owen Thomas, a descendant of the Anglesey Bone Setters. Hugh invented the ‘Thomas Splint’ used by Robert during the First World War to save the lives of thousands of soldiers and is still used by the British Army Medical Core to this day.

Agnes Hunt was born into a Shropshire land-owning family in 1867 and despite a painful hip disability, she trained as a nurse. In 1900 she opened Florence House, a convalescent home for disabled children in Baschurch. Robert Jones was so impressed by her visionary work he become Honorary Surgeon to the home which flourished under their joint leadership, becoming one of the first institutions to use X-ray. Florence House became an auxiliary Military Hospital during the war before being moved to the current Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic hospital site near Gobowen in 1921.

Qube chose to highlight the work of these heroes because so few people knew their incredible story. Chief Officer, Laurel Roberts said: “People know the name of the hospital but not many know the importance they played in developing the modern healthcare practices we adopt today. We wanted to highlight the work of these true pioneers”.

Hospital Archives Officer, Marie Carter who provided much of the research material for the installation agreed. She said: “Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt understood the importance of rehabilitating soldiers on an emotional as well as a physical level. Agnes instilled mental positivity in her patients. She gave them a focus. And importantly, she campaigned to the change public attitude to those disabled by their injuries.”

FRACTURE: WW1 to 21ST Century Healing is at Qube Gallery, Oswestry from September 10 to November 11, 2105. Open: Mon to Fri 9pm – 5pm, Saturday 9.30 to 12.30.

For further information call 01691 656882 or visit

This project is funded through the Lottery and Arts Council through The Shropshire First World War Community Consortium. For details of other events in Shropshire visit