Dr Mary Coghill-Hawkes

Innovation & Vision winner

Past Staff

Dr Mary Coghill-Hawkes worked at City from its very earliest days as the Northampton Institute, lecturing in first aid and disease prevention. Her work helped shape the Institute's early focus on public health and wellbeing. In her more than twenty years at the Institute, Dr Coghill-Hawkes expanded her initial remit teaching St John's Ambulance courses, to include vital courses in disease prevention. She earnt a doctorate in 1901 from the London School of Medicine for Women. This was via the ‘Triple Qualification’, offered by the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh and the Faculty (later Royal College) of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow, which was one of very few avenues to medical practice for women in the late 19th century. Dr Coghill-Hawkes also worked as a registrar and anaesthetist at the Royal Waterloo Hospital for Women and Children and later at the Royal Free Hospital, alongside her work at the Institute. In 1904, Coghill-Hawkes opened the Swedish Institute, the first UK school teaching “Swedish gymnastics”, a practice now known as physiotherapy.