It is impossible not to think of the thousands of people who must have walked through these wards.

The Victoria Infirmary is one of the south side's most imposing buildings and holds the memories of patients, visitors and staff from across Glasgow.

Closed in May last year, the hospital has lain empty while NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde chose which developer to sell the 9.5 acre site on to.

Now housing provider Sanctuary Group has taken over, I wanted to take one last tour round the building before it begins its new chapter.

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Operations and Environment manager Andrew Smillie, from SafeDem, agreed to allow me in.

The first thing we see is beautiful stained glass on one of the Victoria's huge stairwells. The staircase will be knocked down but Sanctuary has vowed to retain the windows and repurpose them elsewhere in the planned development of flats.

Andrew likens taking apart a building of this size like manipulating a "huge Meccano set".

On each floor, once busy wards lie eerily empty. Most of the contents of the Victoria have been cleared out but in some wards there are signs of life left behind - overhead lights in an operating theatre or call buttons for nurses.

The building is a puzzle box of rooms and ante-rooms - doors lead off in unexpected directions.

Andrew insists he doesn't believe in ghosts but says: "When you're walking alone - then you start seeing things."

The Victoria Infirmary was opened at a cost of £16,880 on February 14, 1890 by the Duke of Argyll.

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It was the result of years of fundraising, boosted when Queen Victoria gave her backing to the financial efforts after learning the new hospital was to be named in her honour.

The people of the south side were encouraged to give an annual donation of £1 or a payment of £10, which allowed the donor to recommend one person annually to admission to the hospital.

At the time, people had to be referred and there was a scale of eligibility for a bed.

Battlefield was just one of a number of sites considered for the hospital, including Eglinton Toll, Kinning Park and Govan Toll.

Glasgow Council offered 4.5 acres of land on the edge of Queen’s Park at a reduced price of five shillings per square yard.

A competition for architects to submit plans for a 120-bedded hospital - to cost no more than £20,000 - received 46 entries from around the UK.

Each design was known only by a code name and the judges chose the design codenamed “Hygiene” by the Glasgow firm of Campbell, Douglas & Sellars.

The Vicky was staffed by two residential doctors and six visiting consultants as well as a team of four sisters, four staff nurses, three night nurses and four student nurses - all headed by Matron.

There was also a small live-in staff of janitor, cleaners, cooks and others whose lives were governed by strict rules.

If patients were well enough they had to help around the hospital with women put to sewing and cleaning.

New wards opened in 1893 and 1906, the x-ray department in 1902 and the clinical laboratory in 1913.

In its day, the hospital had a reputation for constant innovation, introducing new developments to the building that were often the first of their kind in Scotland.

Now, the signs of slow decay are clear as you walk around the building: window sills are peeling paint, roofs leak and remaining furnishings, such as carpets, look decades out of date.

Read more: Victoria Infirmary closures brings car park misery for drivers

In a shower block, there is a sticker from the now-defunct Scottish Health Education Group, which reads "Smoking Spoils Other People's Appetites."

In the x-ray department, doctor's names are still attached to dookits bearing labels such as "soft tissue", "gynaecology" and "vascular".

While in the mortuary, where metal tables are still lying out, the only remaining sign of staff is a notice reading "When placing a body in the fridge, please write the details on the board."

Throughout the building, staff have written notes on walls saying goodbye to their hospital.

The last shift in A&E has written a list of their names. Someone else has scrawled "Ward A rocks". Someone called Denise writes that she will "miss these walls".

Having stood for 125 years, the Victoria Infirmary is a vital part of the south side landscape.

Now staff, and locals, have said their final goodbyes they face an interesting wait to see what will come next in the life of the Vicky.

On 5 July 1948 the Victoria became part on the NHS and earned its place in the hearts of the local population as‘The Vicky’.

In 1971, the Victoria Infirmary opened the ground-breaking Victoria Geriatric Unit which was later renamed the Mansionhouse Unit and was known locally as the “Langside Hilton”!