Nurse's book opens a window on the past

Staff at Stepping Hill Hospital turned detective to find the family of a nurse who captured a fascinating insight into life on the wards a century ago.

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Nurse's book opens window on the past

Stepping Hill Nurse Mary Hicks with her four sons Credit: ITV Granada

A book of sketches and poems collected by a nurse at Stockport's Stepping Hill Hospital during the First World War has been discovered.

Mary Hicks began the 'autograph book' in 1906 but most of the entries are from wounded soldiers she cared for, when the site became a military hospital in 1914.

Soldiers sketches from Mary Hicks autograph book Credit: ITV Granada

The book was discovered in a second hand store in Cornwall and hospital staff turned detective to find the nurses relatives.

Sketch of Nurse Hicks caring for injured soldier Credit: ITV Granada

Nurse Hicks' granddaughter Sally-Anne Bromley was living just four miles away in Cheshire.

'I'm thrilled this is a new chapter in our family history. It is clear from the book her patients must have found her caring and great company to write so many messages. We are overwhelmed to read it.'

A Sketch of an 'Orderly' at Stepping Hill Hospital Credit: ITV Granada

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