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Black Angels from the Empire

Overseas nurses and doctors played a significant role in filling the gaps in the newly formed National Health Service. In 1949, severe shortages in labour existed at all levels of the health service, with an estimated shortfall of 54,000 nurses.

Prize-Giving-at-Claybury-Hospital,-1966

By the late 1940s, sixteen British colonies had established recruitment procedures to ensure a steady intake of colonial nursing recruits for the National Health Service. Substantial numbers of Caribbean born men and women entered the NHS from the early 50s. Enoch Powell, who later became notorious for attacking black immigration, was Minister of Health in the early 1960s and was responsible for inviting large numbers of Caribbean immigrants to work in Britain’s hospitals.

Esther,-student-nurse-at-Claybury-Hospital,-1966Nurse-Braithwaite,-1968Student-nurses-at-Claybury-Hospital,-1963Student-Nurses,-Kent,-1961

Audio


A Former Nurse talks about the training they had to undertake when they arrived in the UK.

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A former nurse talks about the changes in nursing during her career.

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