In a small town in the state of Hessen in southern Germany there is a long street situated near the centre of the town overlooked at one end by an enormous hotel.  Along most of the length of the street there are private clinics making it a veritable Harley Strasse! The first clinic on the street lies derelict now but it was originally the combined home and practise of a urology specialist, Doktor Klaus Kraft.

Born in 1910, it appears Herr Doktor Kraft practised with his wife and/or another partner. He died in October 1988 at the age of 78 but the house was clearly still occupied for some time afterwards - whether or not it still functioned as a clinic after his demise is unclear - until his wife eventually passed away. The house lies derelict now just a few yards from the busy centre of town and it is very much a time capsule with masses of interesting artefacts scattered about everywhere you look. The fact of there being so much stuff left behind would tend to indicate that in all likelihood the doctor and his wife had no children, or that possibly they were pre-deceased but it has proved singularly difficult to find out anything much at all about this enigmatic location.

The building oozes an atmosphere of the macabre, not least on the ground floor where there are two consulting/operating rooms complete with an array of medical equipment still in place - drugs, surgical equipment, couches with leg stirrups, and even the operating lights. In an anteroom off one of the consulting rooms there is a large trolley upon which there are eight human kidneys pickled in formaldehyde in square glass cases!

It appears the doctor had a strange taste in art for there are several prints of females in pretty pastel summer dresses dotted around the house, not in itself anything particularly unusual until closer inspection reveals that the women wearing the dresses are skeletal and very much in the style of the renowned German artist H. R. Geiger, he of 'Alien' and 'Necronomicon' fame...

Very odd indeed!

Also on the ground floor there is a room which must have been really lovely in it's time, for it looks out across a large private garden and has heavily stacked book shelves along much of the walls - clearly it was a study or a library. A quick look at some of the titles was interesting in itself, one potentially pointing to Nazi sympathies for it was a title on Albert Speer, Hitler's architect. Given that the doctor was at his prime during the Nazi era this is perhaps not particularly surprising.

The bright and airy first floor is reached by a grand curving staircase and constitutes the living area of the house with a lounge plenty big enough for a full size Steinway grand. But here again there is a hint of the macabre for a large, moth eaten, stuffed fox sits atop the mouldering remains of the once mighty piano.  Someone in the household was very much into hunting for there are a number of animal skins and the horns of small deer or mountain goats left lying about. We also found several black and white photographs, presumably of Doctor Kraft and his wife, which look like they were taken on holidays in the early 1950s. A well equipped kitchen opens off the first floor hall but bizarrely there is also what appears to be a small ward to the rear of the kitchen hinting at in-patient treatment on a limited scale. Towards the front of the house we found a room containing several wardrobes with clean and immaculately pressed lady's clothing left hanging there, some of it still in plastic wrap as though it has just come back from the dry cleaners.

The top floor is the bedroom area where there are also a number of rooms which looked very much like they were used as office space, but there is so much stuff heaped up that it's hard to be sure of anything in this house!


Below is a selection of the photographs we took in and around this intriguing private urology clinic in July 2012.

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Judging by the number of old folk wandering in and out of this grand hotel it looks like many of those who are visiting 'Harley Strasse' stay there!

At first glance it is only the rather overgrown garden that gives away the fact this building stands empty.

The library at the rear of the house is still stacked with thousands of books.


The first clinical consultation room still contains everything that is needed to carry out operations.

A glass fronted cupboard set into the wall still contains surgical instruments.

I suspect these are sterilisation cabinets or the like.


In the corner of the room is a scrub area.


A variety of odd looking surgical instruments!


Before the advent of disposable syringes re-usable glass ones were used.

This lamp was used to light up the consulting room's work bench along one of the walls.

The writing on the case indicates that this is part of an endoscope though it doesn't look much like it.

A timer or some sort of gas gauge? It's had to be certain.

The operating couch complete with stirrups.

Were the patient's notes typed up as the doctor operated?

It's gruesome time!

I suspect these preserved kidneys were used to display the effects of a variety of renal diseases.

...ick !!!


This room looked like it was used for processing tissue samples or perhaps for preparation of equipment and medicines.

Test tube racks and possibly an autoclave?


A slightly odd choice of room decoration in the theatre!


This is the second of the clinic's consulting rooms.


Various medicines.
I'm not sure I'd like those waved around my renal anatomy!
A urology reference chart.

The operating lights still sit over the operating couch.


Another pickled kidney, this time halved for display. Or so it would appear - except that it is absolutely enormous!

Assorted equipment in the clinic anteroom.


On the first floor now where the corridor floor was strewn with 35mm photo slides.


It's such a crying shame to see a Steinway rotting away.


This unfortunate fellow was not the only dead animal we found on the first floor - there were numerous tanned skins and several deer horns dotted about.
This huge dresser has been ransacked.
The doctor's wife's fur coat and hat.
In the kitchen.
Here's the first of those creepy prints.
A mass of old monochrome holiday photos.
In happy times.
Is this the doc?


So the print on the left is fairly conventional but what about the one on the right???

Clean clothes hang in the wardrobe.


Two deer skulls amongst yet more photos.


There's even abandoned medical equipment on the upper floors of the house.

How macabre is this???

Urology journals and reference books.

The doctor's clinic sign.

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