Hellingly Hospital was designed by architect G.T. Hine, modelled with a late Victorian image. It began admitting patients in 1903, and the majority of buildings eventually closed in 1993. The total site is close to 25 hectares in size.
Hellingly is in a very isolated area, in the middle of East Sussex country side, with only one road leading to it, and its own private train line. The buildings were designed to be as self-sufficient as possible, with most of the staff living on site. This was in line with the belief at the time that isolation was necessary for the care and treatment of mentally ill people.
The hospital boasted many facilities, such as a ball room, sewing rooms, hair salon, laundry room, patients shop, extensive outside grounds, excellent utilities, a boiler house, and a water tower. As well as the main facility, there were also several other villas that surrounded it. Hellingly also had its own small morgue.
Since closing in 1994, the site has been subject to repeated vandalism and multiple arson attacks. As such, the building is very unsafe, with many ceilings destroyed and floors caved in. Most of the hospital has been vandalised by graffiti artists, and most windows and remaining furniture have been smashed and broken. However, despite this, there are still many good views to be found here, and the place is well known to Urban Explorers in the UK.