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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
17th February 1938 1st public experimental demonstration of Baird color TV (London)
17th February 1896 London Country Councils' Muzzling Order becomes effective
17th February 1883 A Ashwell patents free-toilet in London
17th February 1740 The end of the great frost, freezing of the Thames and a terrible Winter
The Middlesex Hospital
The place of the unfortunate death of Prince Monolulu.
Location: Mortimer Street, Soho
Description: The Middlesex Hospital was a teaching hospital until 2005. It first opened in 1745 on Windmill Street and was moved in 1757 to Mortimer Street where it remained.
The Duke of York, later King George VI, visited the Hospital on 26 June 1928 to lay the foundation stone, later returning to finally open it on 29 May 1935.
The building can be seen, just before it was demolished, in the film Eastern Promises. Its name in this film was changed to Trafalgar Hospital using an inscription matching the style and apparent age of the old legend above the main door.
For nearly 100 years, four giant paintings by Frederick Cayley Robinson welcomed visitors to the reception area of The Middlesex Hospital. 'Acts of Mercy' were painted in 1912 by the distinctive yet elusive British artist, after being commissioned by Sir Edmund Davis, one of the governors of the hospital.
Eccentric racing tipster Ras Prince Monolulu (1881-1965) famously died here. The biography of Jeffrey Bernard by Graham Lord describes Prince Monolulu's death in some detail - Bernard at the time was working as a horse racing journalist and visited Monolulu in the Middlesex Hospital to interview him. Bernard had brought with him a box of 'Black Magic' chocolates and offered Monolulu a 'strawberry cream'. Monolulu subsequently choked to death on it and Bernard bade him farewell.