St John's Hospital - Bakewell Almshouses The word hospital used to mean lodging house, a place where "hospitality" was provided. The original 1602 building was provided by John Manners after an initiative by Bess of Hardwick with the 1597 approval of Queen Elizabeth I. The current building dates from 1709 and houses six separate homes, hence the six front doors you see today. The homes had one tiny room downstairs and one upstairs - no bathroom, toilet or kitchen, The Manners family, Dukes of Rutland from 1703, maintained the building until 1920. They gave it and the adjacent former town hall to the trustees who had been running the charity. The town hall was sold at a 1966 auction for £1,137. Financial problems caused the homes to become derelict and unfit for habitation by 2001. They were rescued and restored by the trustees in 2004-6 at a cost of £325,000, which was raised through donations and grants. There are now three larger homes, combining modern facilities with many historical features. Awards for the restoration include one from HRH Prince of Wales.