12 dead in Bridgend smallpox outbreak – 24 April 1962

By this date 50 years ago, 12 women patients from Glanrhyd Hospital near Bridgend had died of smallpox – in the third phase of the outbreak in Wales. Continue reading

Doctor leaves smallpox hospital after three months – 21 April 1962

Fifty years ago today, the South Wales Echo reported that Dr Jim Thomas returned home after 93 days in the isolation hospital at Penrhys in Rhondda. Continue reading

Three dead in new smallpox ‘mystery’ outbreak – 9 April 1962

Fifty years ago today, a third patient at Glanrhyd Hospital near Bridgend died of smallpox. The new outbreak in the mental hospital had the authorities worried – they did not know how the disease had got into Glanrhyd. The South Wales Echo headline that day read ‘Big search for smallpox carrier’. Continue reading

‘Smallpox All-clear Likely Tonight’- South Wales Echo 2 April 1962

Fifty years ago today, medical officers in the South Wales Valleys were due to give the ‘all-clear’ which would mean that the smallpox outbreak – which began in Cardiff in January – was over. But documents in the National Archives show that their bosses were unhappy about the decision. And only days later, a new outbreak in the Bridgend area would show that the local authorities’ optimism was misplaced. Continue reading