Nurses Voices is an oral history project to capture the memories of nurses and midwives who have trained or worked at St George’s Hospital and medical school since 1929. It is being undertaken by the Faculty of Health and Social Care Sciences at Kingston University and St George’s Hospital Medical School (now St George’s, University of London).
Where hospital histories traditionally concentrate on buildings and celebrated administrators, physicians and surgeons, the experience of the patient on the ward and of their treatment is often dependent on the relationship with the nursing staff. Nurses Voices tells the stories of the nurses who support and administer new medical treatments and advances – but are so often un-remarked in official accounts of institutions – as they are remembered, with all the personal interpretation, thoughtfulness and humour that you would expect to find in such a collection. The reminiscences build a picture of what it was like to be a St George’s nurse, while covering topics from the introduction of the National Health Service to the impact of St George’s move to Tooting from Hyde Park Comer.
So far 100 interviews have been conducted, covering a period from the early 1930s to the present day. The recordings and their transcripts will be held in the archives at St George’s, University of London. The project is also collecting photographs and memorabilia from St George’s nurses, and the website includes a photo gallery. A compilation DVD of extracts from interviews and photos is available to purchase.