Moments of Care

Logo header with small images of healthcare

The National Health Service (NHS) has stood at the centre of everyday life in the UK for over 70 years. 

The NHS has provided healthcare for all citizens, free at the point of access, since 5 July 1948.   It has been the UK’s largest employer since the 1960s. Since 2017 NHS at 70 has worked with volunteers across the four nations of the UK to record stories from patients, staff and the public.  This new public Archive of NHS history will enable everybody to discover more about the place of the NHS in all our lives, past, present and future.

Capturing and sharing ‘moments of care’, this exhibition is a taster of the diverse collection of voices you can find in our Archive.  All our human experiences are reflected in the history of this unique institution. 

The history of the NHS is the story of our lives in the UK since 1948.


This Digital Exhibition accompanies our 'Moments of Care' exhibition which will be touring at venues throughout the UK in 2020. Click here to view our tour schedule and public events, including art workshops, film showings and much more. 




Lauren reflects here on her experience of mental illness and the NHS.
Jonathan reflects on his patient experience and attitudes to sexual health in the NHS.
Joan talks about suffering from breast cancer and experiencing the same treatment as her patients—but only after she retired.
Geoff considers the NHS to be 'a much loved but slightly dysfunctional aunt'.
Ethel worked in the NHS on the day it started. Here she reflects on the changes she has seen.
Edith Kenny recalls her experience of nursing in the 1940s and how the male patients often fell in love with the nurses.
Conor reflects on how, during the troubles in Northern Ireland, the hospital was seen as a safe space.
Christine recalls her experience of being in hospital as a child in 1948.
Bronwen, a retired physician, recalls having her tonsils removed in her living room as a child, before the NHS started.
Antony reflects on stand-out moments during his career in NHS communications and engagement.