Kate Platt


Only daughter of James & Elizabeth Platt

Kate was born 6th June 1866


Kate often accompanied her father on his professional journeys to the United States and the continent before her scientific bent led her to enter on her own medical career.

She gained the M.B, B.S, (Lon) in 1904 and went to India in 1907, working in Poona for a year, then later she was in charge of The Dufferin Hospital, at Calcutta. After New Delhi was founded by the decree of King George V at the durbar in 1911 a medical college was started called: –


This was a college to suit the needs of Indian women students of the various races and castes.

When the capital of India was shifted to Delhi, Lady Hardinge (1868-1914) the then wife of Viceroy Charles Hardinge was the first to take initiative for starting a medical school for women, as the lack of a separate medical college for women made it impossible for Indian women to study medicine.

After a visit from Queen Mary in 1911/12, Lady Hardinge laid the foundation stone for the college, on 17th March, to commemorate her visit.

It was named the Queen Mary College & Hospital.

Lady Hardinge was actively involved in collecting funds from the institution of princely state & Public; unfortunately she died on July 11th 1914.

The college was eventually inaugurated on February 7th 1916 by her husband.

On the suggestion of Queen Mary, the college was named after Lady Hardinge to perpetuate the memory of its founder.

The college started under the Leadership of: –


Kate being the 1st Principal of the college.

In its 1st year 16 students were enrolled for the 7 year course.

Kate also travelled extensively throughout India studying the conditions of girls education and visiting the universities and colleges.

In 1913 she came back to England and took an M.D (Lon Uni).  On her return back to India she then engaged staff and the college was opened in 1916; (as stated) the building was among the first to rise on the site of the new city.

From the first the college prospered and the students proved highly successful in the Punjab University examinations.

A Dr Ruth Young CBE who as Ruth Wilson, was the 1st Professor of Surgery at the college, and served as principal from 1936 until 1940.

The college became affiliated to the University of Delhi in 1950 & Post Graduate courses started in 1954.

In 1960 the course duration was reduced to 5 years and today it has 150 graduate admissions.

In 1921 ill-health caused Dr Kate Platt to retire, but other opportunities of service opened at home, such as lecturing to East end audiences on subjects connected with social hygiene (a service she specially enjoyed) and promoting the interests of The Marie Curie hospital for Cancer, Hampstead, also acting as medical adviser in the recruitment of the Lady Minto Nursing Association for India.

Kate died suddenly on the 13th October 1940 at 35 Howitt Road, London, aged 73 years.

Her estate was left to her brother Ralph & her niece Marjorie Platt.

The effects were £4,363 19s 3d

(Will proved in Llandudno (23 Dec 1940)


Comments about this page

  • My father was nephew to great-aunt Kate. He recalls her to be very kind and soft. I have some original letters she wrote from India to England re. her time there. I also have some of her water colours done in India and Simla.

    Ed: Many thanks for your contribution Fi. No doubt you have an interesting collection and all this information adds to our knowledge of Kate. John B

    By Fi (28/01/2022)
  • In the hopes that Dorothy Saul-Pooley checks in with this sight I am the granddaughter of John Platt, sister of Kate. I own two paintings rendered by Kate. One is her cottage and the second interior of cottage. They are well preserved and the watercolor not faded. I would love to share any first hand information I have including personal contact between John’s wife, Mary, included in her journal that I have.
    My hope is that you pursue your plan of writing Aunt Kate’s biography.

    Ed: Virginia, many thanks for your contribution to our website. I will endeavour to contact Dorothy and draw her attention to your comment. John B

    By virginia singdahlsen (29/01/2019)
  • I am doing a lot of research into Kate Platt with a view to writing her biography. I have some original letters that she wrote whilst in India, the prospectus for the first intake to the College when it opened in India, some other information about her lectures to the Royal Society.
    I am a great great niece, my grandmother being Winifred Platt, sister of Marjorie Platt.

    Ed: Dorothy – many thanks for your contribution. We wish you success in your research. Please feel free to add any further comments to this page should you feel they are relevant. John B

    By Dorothy Saul-Pooley (05/12/2018)

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