The National Health Service
The magazine of the photo-essay
“A free, really high quality photo-essay magazine. Fabulous!”
Stephen Fry. British actor, writer and film maker
To coincide with the 75th anniversary of the National Health Service, this
book captures the optimism and ideals of the early years. Since its inception in 1948,
the NHS has held a place at the heart of the nation. Promising to care for the
citizens of Britain ‘from the cradle to the grave’, its offer of universal health care for
all, regardless of wealth or status, is widely regarded as one of Britain’s greatest
These images, all taken from the 20th century, celebrate the NHS’s many triumphs
and trials – providing a timely reminder of the importance of its continued survival.
Aneurin Bevan, the Labour Minister for Health responsible for inaugurating the NHS,
reviews the public information campaign in 1948.
The first babies to be born under the new National Health Service, 5th July 1948.
Glasses were initially free of charge on the NHS. Production couldn't keep up with demand, and there was soon a six-
month waiting list.
With regular check-ups, younger generations would get to keep their teeth.