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Main Historic Building


The main historical building dates back to 1902-1904 where the British Occupying Forces garrisoned after the occupation of Bloemfontein on 14 March 1900. The large British Garrison (soldiers and families) soon had a need for a military hospital which led to the construction of three large pre-fabricated wood and corrugated zinc buildings. Soon after administration blocks as well as nurses quarters were added. The hospital was used during the second South African War (1899-1902) to care for women and children who became sick in the concentration camps which were situated adjacent to the area. The British Garrison made use of the complex until 1912/13. After the establishment of the SA Union Defence Force in 1910, the hospital was declared a Military Medical Service training facility in 1912. It also served as a military hospital until it closed in October 1921. During 1923 it was sold to the Bloemfontein City Council which used it as an isolation hospital during several epidemics such as the polio epidemic of 1934 and 1943. During the latter outbreak the hospital received the first “Iron Long” machine in South Africa to treat patients with lung conditions. In 1966 the hospital stated scaling down and was closed down in early 1967. The then 2nd Armoured Car Regiment moved in to occupy the buildings. Soon after the regiment was incorporated into the School of Armour and in 1970 the final historical building was incorporated. In 1985 several buildings were demolished to make way for more modern development for the School of Armour. The historical building was restored in 1995 and declared a National Monument on 5 February 1999. Presently the historical building which is used by the SA Armour

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