Joyce Green Hospital opened in December 1903. Planned in the late 19th century to accommodate sufferers of smallpox, which had reached epidemic levels in London, it was built as the permanent replacement to three hospital ships based nearby.
There were North and South gates. The gate to the North gave access from the Thames and the patients brought down the river on the River Ambulance transport from North Wharf (Blackwall) and South Wharf (Rotherhithe). The Medical Superintendent’s residence and housing for Medical officers was outside the South Gate.