Broadmoor on fire: Huge blaze breaks out at psychiatric hospital where some of Britain’s


A huge blaze has erupted at a psychiatric hospital where some of Britain’s worst criminals have been held.

Broadmoor Hospital in Crownthorne, is currently up in flames sending plumes of thick black smoke into the sky.

Broadmoor is a high-security psychiatric hospital with a history of holding some of the country’s most notorious criminals, including Ronnie Kray, the Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, Charles Bronson and Robert Maudsley.

A Thames Valley Police spokesperson said they are attending the scene and assisting with road closures. They said that the blaze is restricted to the hospital site.

They added: ‘At this stage there is no impact to the wider road network.’

A huge fire has broken out at a psychiatric hospital where some of Britain's worst criminals have been held

A huge fire has broken out at a psychiatric hospital where some of Britain’s worst criminals have been held

Broadmoor Hospital in Crownthorne, is currently in flames which are sending plumes of black smoke into the sky

Broadmoor Hospital in Crownthorne, is currently in flames which are sending plumes of black smoke into the sky

Huge clouds of thick dark smoke can be seen coming from the building

Huge clouds of thick dark smoke can be seen coming from the building 

Broadmoor is a high-security psychiatric hospital with a history of holding some of the country's most notorious criminals, including Ronnie Kray, the Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, and Robert Maudsley

Broadmoor is a high-security psychiatric hospital with a history of holding some of the country’s most notorious criminals, including Ronnie Kray, the Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, and Robert Maudsley

Today, Broadmoor holds the man who tried to kidnap Princess Anne in 1974, Ian Ball, and one of Lee Rigby’s killers, Michael Adebowale. 

Located in Crowthorne, Berkshire, Broadmoor Hospital has housed dozens of sadistic killers since it opened its doors in 1863, including Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, gangster Ronnie Kray and rapist Robert Napper.

The institution for the criminally insane was built after the creation of the Criminal Lunatics Act 1860, also called the Broadmoor Act. 

Violent Gangster Ronnie Kray, pictured, was a patient at Broadmoor until he died of a heart attack aged 61

Violent Gangster Ronnie Kray, pictured, was a patient at Broadmoor until he died of a heart attack aged 61

Peter Sutcliffe, known as the Yorkshire Ripper, who killed 13 women and injured many more in the 1970s, was a patient at Broadmoor

Peter Sutcliffe, known as the Yorkshire Ripper, who killed 13 women and injured many more in the 1970s, was a patient at Broadmoor 

Robert Maudsley, one of Britain's most dangerous killers, was held inside the prison for the criminally insane

Robert Maudsley, one of Britain’s most dangerous killers, was held inside the prison for the criminally insane

Charles Bronson, violent criminal and one of the UK's longest-serving prisoners has spent almost 50 years behind bars, with some of those years spent at Broadmoor

Charles Bronson, violent criminal and one of the UK’s longest-serving prisoners has spent almost 50 years behind bars, with some of those years spent at Broadmoor

The Broadmoor criminal lunatic asylum was opened in 1863 holding 95 female patients, with a block for male patients being added a year later. 

The asylum was established for the ‘safe custody and treatment’ of severely mentally ill criminals.

When it first opened its doors in the Victorian age, there were no drugs or psychological treatments like what we are familiar with today. Instead, patients enjoyed a regime of rest and occupational therapy.

A few years ago, Broadmoor staff revealed what it’s really like to work at the high-security psychiatric hospital treating the criminally insane in Channel 5 documentary Broadmoor: Serial Killers & High Security.

From a patient torturing and killing another inmate to stopping obsessive ‘fans’ visiting high profile murderers with their children mental health professionals opened up about their harrowing experiences.

Professor Pamela Taylor, who worked as head of medical services at the institution, revealed how women would get solicitors to fight for their right to visit sex offenders with their own children in tow, and sent so many love letters to Sutcliffe that he couldn’t answer them all.

Another staff member who featured on the show Dr Jackie Craissati MBE, admitted reading about the crimes committed by the patients she treated left her ‘overwhelmed’ and feeling ‘waves of fear’.



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