Loving Kiss From A Big Brother

Child and Adolescent Health Service

Celebrating 108 years


Princess Margaret Hospital


PMH Pre 1910

Pre 1909

  • 25 per cent of all deaths in WA are of children under one year of age.
  • 31 per cent of all children admitted with diarrhoea and enteritis die.
  • 15.7 per cent of deaths are a result of diphtheria, tuberculosis and whooping cough – diseases that are considered preventable today.
  • Housing in Perth is in short supply with much of the population living in tents and rooming houses.
  • Without a proper sanitation system, health problems are compounded further by the enormous increase in population due to the gold rush.
  • Effects of the 1890s baby boom are being felt, with the population now at 44,000.
  • A children’s ward is added to Perth Public Hospital in response to very high infant mortality rate.
  • Charles Moore, a prominent Perth businessman, begins his campaign to establish a children’s hospital.
  • Building works begin and Charles Moore redoubles his fundraising efforts, personally guaranteeing £2,000 so that construction can continue.


Charles Moore organises the first meeting to gauge public support. He then sets about organising a round of fundraising activities including Government House balls and an ‘Old English Fayre’.

Charles Moore had an enthusiastic group of influential supporters including Harry Boan, Lady Edeline Strickland, Rabbi Freedman, James Sykes Battye, Sir George Shenton and Henry Daglish.

They become some of the very first members of the Board of Subscribers, contributing generous donations to the cause.


After a rigorous fundraising campaign by Mr Moore, Perth Children’s Hospital opened on 30 June with two pavilion wards, each with 20 beds, an outpatients building and one operating theatre.

Dr Norman Good is appointed the first Resident Medical Director, with prominent Perth physicians and surgeons Saw, Trethowan and Officer among the honorary medical staff. Sir George Shenton is appointed first President of the Board of Subscribers.

Matron Annie Anderson comes equipped for the position having been Matron of Perth Public Hospital and holding certificates in general nursing, midwifery and infectious diseases. She is assisted by three nursing sisters, six staff nurses and five probationers.

Elliot Patrick Mullins, aged two years and four months becomes the first patient admitted to the hospital in July for treatment of bronchitis and tonsillitis.

‘The Hospital, built, equipped, and furnished, even to the installing of instrument and drugs, has cost approximately £12,000 and is absolutely free of debt, showing that in twelve months the public of Western Australia have nobly responded to the appeal for the children, and have in that time given over £7,000 to this most deserving object.’

Perth Children’s Hospital first Annual Report.

Original Perth Children’s Hospital outpatients building 1909 Original Perth Children’s Hospital outpatients building

Pre 1920s Perth Children’s Hospital sign Pre 1920s Perth Children’s
Hospital sign

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