Thurgood, Graham (2008) A history of nursing in Halifax and Huddersfield 1870-1960. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

Little has been written about nursing in the period 1870-1960 within the geographical boundaries and surrounding areas of Halifax and Huddersfield.

This thesis aims to explore the development of nursing within these towns.

The focus is on general nurses in hospital and community roles.

Rosenberg’s eight areas of importance were used allowing the construction of an historical analysis of both nursing and nurses locally.

Archival sources were found in twenty-five main archives and twelve of these were investigated further. Primary documents belonging to local retired nurses such as personal documents, photographs and memorabilia were included. In total 1493 individual items were subjected to documentary analysis.

The second stage of data collection involved conducting oral history interviews to capture memories and experiences of local retired nurses. A total of 373 named nurses were identified, sixty-eight contacted, forty-four agreed to participate and twenty-one were interviewed. A life story approach recorded their personal lives and nursing careers. This approach required the ethical issues of biographical research methods and interviewing to be addressed. Interviews were recorded on audio tape and transcribed ready to be deposited in the University of Huddersfield archives.

Data was subjected to analysis using NVivo computer software and Rosenberg’s eight areas of importance used as a priori themes.

Nursing in these two provincial towns changed during the ninety years under study often in response to local or national issues such as professional registration. Nurse education occurred in all but the early years and developed alongside the increasing specialization of nurses and as each nursing branch emerged. Nurses in West Yorkshire were subject to particular local issues such as its geography, environment and industrial heritage.

The merits of this research are it provides a unique account of the local development of nursing adding to the professions history and presenting implications for present day practice.

Volume 1
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

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Volume 2 - Appendices
PhD_Appendices.pdf - Accepted Version
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