Black History Month untold stories from Salisbury’s Healthcare History Archives


Post World War 2 the region needed many more nurses for their hospitals and the National Health Service was being set up in 1948

Nurse training in Salisbury offered a great opportunity for career and new lifestyle. Many overseas students arrived from countries that had been devastated by war.

Nursing recruitment leaflet (date unknown)

One German student nurse recalls:

‘We worked alongside Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Swiss, French, Polish, Latvian, Estonian, German and Austrian nurses and there was an Indian and Nigerian nurse.’

Training for nurses at Salisbury General Infirmary from the 1950s until 1990s

Overseas recruitment

Salisbury School of Nursing, in the 1950s-1970s, attracted candidates by reputation as well as being a cathedral city within easy reach of London and the coast helped too. They also offered midwifery, theatre, plastic surgery and ear,nose and throat courses too.

Sister recalls:

‘It was not a problem to maintain a flow of student and pupil nurses. Numbers were augmented during the fifties when a number of overseas candidates came from countries including Hong Kong, Uganda, Finland and Iran; this sort of recruitment continued during the sixties and seventies. Army nurses who came from Tidworth Military hospital for geriatric experience.’
Presentation of Certificates and Awards to the Nurses, 6th December 1972. E/N France Beru receiving Doreen Carpenter Buckle from Miss J Fouracre (Principal Tutor from 1964 to 1969.)

Celebrated visitor to Salisbury hospital ward

Stars of the 1946 Disney film Song of the South visited Chafyn Grove Ward, Salisbury General Infirmary. Staff nurse Targett and Student nurses Tanner and Miles meet actor James Baskett.

Photograph Salisbury Healthcare History: 2018.736

Baskett received an Academy Honorary Award for his performance as Uncle Remus in the film; making him the first black male performer to receive an Oscar. He was visiting Salisbury for the release of the film at the local cinema.

The film is based on the Uncle Remus story which is a collection of animal tales, songs, and oral folklore collected from southern black Americans. Most memorable from the film is Uncle Remus singing “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah”, the film won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.

Since release, Song of the South film has been controversial. Some critics have described the portrayal of African Americans as racist and stereotypical. Because of this Disney has yet to release Song of the South further for television or film.

More information and full archives www.salisburyhealthcarehistory.uk



ArtCare, Salisbury District Hospital