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Features

Broadmoor revealed: working with dangerous minds

Understanding the complex history and new beginnings bound for Broadmoor.
Terry Fegan and Marcia Tharp at Broadmoor

In a pretty English village in the leafy, affluent Royal County of Berkshire live some of the most complex and high-risk mental health patients in the country.

Their home, Broadmoor Hospital – a name with mythical associations – is one of only three high-security psychiatric hospitals in England, and the oldest and best known.

With an international reputation in forensic medicine, the hospital is light years from its founding days as the Broadmoor Criminal Lunatic Asylum – first opened in 1863.

Not a prison

But more than 150 years later, Broadmoor struggles against misunderstanding and misrepresentation; its many locked doors shrouding the place in mystery.

In the public imagination, the hospital’s associations with savage and irreparable criminality endures. High profile patients have kept media interest high and years of sensational tabloid stories

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