Skip to content

The creation of the National Health Service is considered by many people to be the greatest achievement of any British government. The NHS was established in 1948 on the back of a landslide victory by the Labour Party in 1945, who came to power on a programme that included the creation of the cradle-to-grave welfare state, the mass construction of council housing, and the nationalisation of transport and key industries. Aneurin Bevan, the Labour Minister of Health who pushed for the creation of the NHS, famously said that, “The NHS will last as long as there are folk left with the faith to fight for it.” Now these words are being put to the test as the coalition government seeks to introduce the most regressive changes to the NHS in its history.