Michael Portillo starts a four-part series about abandoned structures in Portillo’s Hidden History of Britain, beginning with the Royal London Hospital.

Abandoned since 2012 but still standing in London’s East End where it was established 250 years ago, the hospital pioneered medical treatment for people too poor to afford it – this was long before the NHS.

Wandering around the sombre old place with a torch – and dressed to match (which fans of Mr P’s vibrant outfits might be sad to hear) – Portillo hams it up a touch as he relays some of the building’s remarkable history.

Joseph Merrick, aka the Elephant Man, lived here for four years, and the Jack the Ripper killings happened within yards of its doors.