The MAD World of Calendar Creator; Midland Man Makes a Date with Lunatic Asylums EXCLUSIVE

Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England), October 9, 2011 | Go to article overview

The MAD World of Calendar Creator; Midland Man Makes a Date with Lunatic Asylums EXCLUSIVE


Byline: ANUJI VARMA

AS the annual Christmas madness draws ever closer, a Midland man has come up with the ideal festive gift - a calendar of LUNATIC ASYLUMS. Kevin Beresford, of Redditch, Worcestershire, came up with the bonkers idea after previously scoring success with calendars packed with pictures of roadkill and roundabouts.

He has travelled around the UK for six months, seeking out and photographing former oldstyle asylums for the new offering, which is already selling well.

"I got the idea after speaking to a customer who had ordered a prison calendar for her son," Kevin told the Sundaymercury.

"She told me his hobby was looking at old lunatic asylums.

"What a great idea! I hit the road and learned so much about them. It was a very interesting project - and it has fast become our best-selling calendar."

Four Midland mental hospitals are included - all of them closed down and most of them surrounded by controversy.

The month of April features a picture and short history of the Victorian-era Warwick County Asylum.

It was built on a grand scale in the gothic style, at one point housing 1,600 patients.

Shocking as it seems now, electric 'bolts from the blue' treatment was considered derigueur for its day. It was also rumoured that some rooms were haunted by past patients.

The Hollymore Hospital, in Rubery, Birmingham, represents the merry month of May. The 100-acre site was purchased because of its location in the farm lands of Rubery, where it was believed that fresh air ''aided the patient's recovery''. …

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