Tokanui Psychiatric Hospital
This is a collection of my favorite photos from Tokanui hospital taken over the last 3 years. With a huge thank you to Jasper (Australia) and Robert.
Jaspers write up:
Now i want to explain a bit more about my trip to New Zealand. I had a rough plan in the back of my mind to explore abandoned, derelict and disused urban places and spaces (because thats what im in to) I had not met my NZ counterpart before
and thus adding to the anticipation of what could/might happen. 2 something hours and 40+ minutes away we arrived at our intended destination, Tokanui, about 20 mins out of Hamilton. We left at 3pm that afternoon and arrived at 11pm, if you would like to know what time we were finishing up the sun was about to come out. Did NOT think i was going to be spending my Saturday evening like this by any account!! Apparently one of the hardest places to get into (and possibly out of once upon a time). Pitch black, small community, electric fences, higher fences, cow sh#t, one pair of shoes, no torches, security patrolling, locked doors, small windows and absolutely no idea which building we were entering next. Until we reached the morgue, we knew what we were doing then... We then drove back to Auckland just in time for breakfast :) so much poo and dust covering my clothes, thank god for my nan!
Opening in July 1912 Tokanui was a rural Psychiatric hospital that was self-sufficient in the early years, much like many other institutes in those days. The sort of patients housed were people suffering OCD, Anxiety and Depression. There is a cemetery on the hospital grounds containing remains of over 500 patients, which the graves remain unmarked. the hospital consisted of a Medium and a Maximum secure ward which was known like Lake Alice for housing the criminally insane. Deinstitutionalisation started in New Zealand in the 1980's and by March 1998 the last ward in Tokanui was shut.