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The hospital was founded as a result of a bequest by Dr Alexander Gray (d. 1807), who was born in Elgin but worked as a surgeon for the East India Company.[1] His will was contested by his family, but eventually his bequest of £20,000 'for the establishment of a hospital in the town of Elgin for the sick and poor of the county of Murray (Moray)' was proven in the Court of Chancery.[1]

The hospital was designed by James Gillespie Graham, featuring a large classical block with giant Doric columns that supported a portico and was topped with drum tower and dome.[2] Work on building the hospital at the western end of the town's High Street started in 1815 and the hospital opened on 1 January 1819, providing 30 beds that could be used for any parishioner of Moray who could produce a note of recommendation from their local minister of the established church.[3] Often those of the Episcopalian or Catholic faith were turned away, causing conflict with the Burgh council on a number of occasions. Some patients who required urgent assistance were sent home critically ill lacking the paperwork from the Kirk minister, ultimately causing their death.[4]

A £22 million redevelopment of the hospital took place between 1992 and 1997 and included extensive refurbishment of existing facilities. The first stage, completed in May 1995, created a new complex for obstetrics, gynaecology and paediatric services, three new operating theatres and five new lifts.[5] In January 1997 the second stage of redevelopment was completed, adding a new acute psychiatric ward and a new accident and emergency building.[6]

A sensory garden was opened in 2010 to provide patients, visitors and staff with an attractive place to relax.[7]

In 2012 a further £3 million redevelopment project commenced.[8] The work, which included a new reception area, a rehabilitation ward, children's outpatient area and discharge lounge, was completed in 2013.[9]


Dr Gray's Hospital has 185 inpatient beds.[10] It delivers approximately 1,100 births per year and has had full accreditation as baby friendly since May 2012.[11]


  1. ^ a b "Who was Dr Gray?". NHS Grampian. 14 October 2005. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
  2. ^ "Elgin, Pluscarden Road, Dr. Gray's Hospital". Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. Retrieved 5 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Building up our Health: the architecture of Scotland's historic hospitals" (PDF). Historic Scotland. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
  4. ^ Letters, various - Dr Gray's Hospital, correspondence 1812-1865, The moray Council archives
  5. ^ "Dr Gray's Hospital, Elgin". Robertson Group. Archived from the original on 1 June 2014. Retrieved 1 June 2014.
  6. ^ "Dr Gray's hospital - Elgin: About Us". NHS Grampian. 18 November 2013. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
  7. ^ "Dr Gray's Sensory Garden Official Opening". NHS Grampian. 13 December 2010. Archived from the original on 27 June 2014. Retrieved 27 June 2014.
  8. ^ Saunderson, Chris (27 January 2012). "Dr Gray's £3 million redevelopment". The Northern Scot. Retrieved 14 July 2014.
  9. ^ "Dr Gray's Hospital redevelopment". The Northern Scot. 23 June 2011. Retrieved 14 July 2014.
  10. ^ Crowther, Stuart (8 January 2013). "Fears that Dr Gray's is struggling to cope with reduced bed capacity". STV News. Retrieved 6 July 2014.
  11. ^ "Baby Friendly accreditation: Doctor Gray's Hospital". Baby Friendly Initiative. Retrieved 10 January 2015.

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