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January 1956

The Guillebaud Report

The Committee of Enquiry into the Cost of the National Health Service, led by CW Guillebaud, published its report, highlighting underfunding of the NHS.

July 1956

Clean Air Act 1956

Legislation aimed at tackling the smog and air pollution created by the burning of coal and industrial activities.

June 1957

The Percy Commission

The Report of the Royal Commission on the Law Relating to Mental Illness and Mental Deficiency (chaired by Baron Percy of Newcastle) recommended that care should be provided in the community.

29 July 1959

The Mental Health Act 1959

Legislation was introduced to implement the Percy Commission's 1957 recommendations to move care for people with 'a mental disorder' into the community.


Health and Care Professions Council

The Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine was established to supervise boards representing health professions, later becoming the Health and Care Professions Council.

9 March 1961

Enoch Powell's 'water tower' speech

Minister of Health, Enoch Powell, spoke dramatically about his desire to see greater community care provision for mental health patients.

January 1962

A hospital plan for England and Wales

Enoch Powell's 'A hospital plan for England and Wales' set out plans to develop a programme of hospital building until the 1970/71 financial year.

March 1962

Royal College of Physicians' 'Smoking and Health' report

The Royal College of Physicians published a report on the link between smoking and cancer of the lung and other diseases, with recommended interventions.

3 July 1962

Central Council for Education and Training in Social Work

The Health Visiting and Social Work (Training) Act established the council to provide professional regulation of social workers.