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Reference SA/RSP
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Level Collection
Extent 117 Boxes
Extent 11 Oversize Boxes
Extent 5 Oversize Volumes
Title Royal Society for Public Health and predecessors
Date 1876-1997
Ordering Instructions This archive record describes a grouping of orderable items: to order any of them for consultation, order copies or view them if they have been digitised, navigate down the archive hierarchy to Item level.
Description Records of the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health and its predecessor bodies, including the Sanitary Institute and the Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene. Includes minutes, examination registers, publications, financial, legal and administrative material, along with photograph albums and property records.
Historical Background

The Sanitary Institute was founded in 1876 by a group of prominent sanitary reformers who wanted to provide a unified perspective on health following the 1875 Public Health Act. It amalgamated with the Parkes Museum of Hygiene in 1883, opened a School of Hygiene and ran examinations for a range of public health professions, including sanitary inspectors, health visitors and school nurses. In 1955, the name was changed to the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health, with the name the Royal Society of Health, also being used.

The Royal Institute of Public Health was originally founded in 1886 and offered courses for the Diploma in Public Health, had laboratories for bacteriology, pathology and chemistry, organised lectures and demonstrations and published the Journal of State Medicine. The same founders simultaneously established the College of State Medicine which merged in 1892 with the laboratory founded by the British Institute for Preventive Medicine and eventually became the Lister Institute.

The Institute of Hygiene was founded in 1903, primarily to establish an exhibition, but it also ran courses and examinations for non-medical workers and offered certificates in a variety of subjects including food and beverages, clothing, and dental and toilet accessories. In 1937 it merged with the Royal Institute of Public Health to form the Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene.

In October 2008 the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health merged with the Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene to form the Royal Society for Public Health.

Both the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health and the Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene were in decline for much of the late 20th century. However, in recent years this trend has been reversed, as pro-active and responsive policy work has led to the Royal Society for Public Health establishing themselves as a powerful player in the field, and working with both Government and industry.

Acquisition Details Presented to the Wellcome Library by the Royal Society for Public Health in October 2009.
Accession Number 1694
Accruals The main body of records of the Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene were surveyed by the Wellcome Library at its headquarters in the 1990s, but have subsequently been lost. The Royal Society for the Promotion of Health is keen for these to be deposited in the Library once they have been located.
Access Status Certain restrictions apply
Access Conditions The majority of the papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to Archives and Manuscripts material. File SA/RSP/A/1/1/34 is closed until 1 January 2014.
Reproduction Conditions Images are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.
Related Material

In the Wellcome Library:
MS.8949 is a collection of prize winning essays from the Royal Society for the Promotion of Health and the Royal Sanitary Institute.

Records of the Lister Institute are held as SA/LIS.

Records of the Society of Medical Officers of Health, predecessor and successor bodies are held as SA/SMO.

Notes

Abbreviations:

IH - Institute of Hygiene

RIPH - Royal Institute of Public Health

RIPHH - Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene

RSI - Royal Sanitary Institute

WHO - World Health Organisation

Subject Public Health
Subject Hygiene
MaterialType Archives - Non-digital
System No. 3b8f76a6-508a-441c-ae50-bd41990264c2