Anaesthesia Heritage Centre

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The Anaesthesia Heritage Centre is a unique resource for the history of anaesthesia, resuscitation and pain relief. Visit the centre to explore the inspiring stories of the people, past and present, who have done so much to keep patients safe and pain-free.

The museum’s collection includes over 4,500 objects, encompassing the entire history of anaesthesia from the first demonstration of ether in 1846 to machines and equipment in use today. The archives and library provide excellent facilities for research into the history of anaesthesia.

Venue Type:

Museum, Archive, Library

Opening hours

Mon-Fri 10.00-16.00, appointment recommended

Admission charges

General admission is free. There is a small charge per person for group tours.

Additional info

A self-guided walk "Blue Plaques and Buildings - a history of anaesthesia walk around London" is now available in digital format.

All the collections (museum, library and archive) relate to the history of anaesthesia, pain relief and resuscitation and celebrate the people who helped the specialty to develop

Collection details

Archives, Literature, Medicine, Science and Technology

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Transportation of wounded by horse-drawn light railway during the Battle of Ancre Heights, October 1916. IWM Q1348.

The Price of a Mile

  • 1 August 2016 — 30 June 2017 *on now

The Price of a Mile is the third in a series of exhibitions honouring the work of doctors who administered anaesthesia and pain relief to the wounded of the First World War. It explores the anaesthetics and pain relief available during the Battle of the Somme, and the facilities and techniques used by medical teams in 1916.

Suitable for

  • Any age


General admission is free. There is a small charge per person for group visits. To book a visit email or call 020 7631 8865.

Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.
The cover of 'A Heavy Reckoning'.

Anaesthesia Museum Lates: The Price of a Mile

  • 19 May 2017 6-8pm

Join us for a special event to celebrate our latest exhibition, The Price of a Mile: Anaesthesia during the Battle of the Somme.

Hear from Dr Emily Mayhew, author of A Heavy Reckoning: War, Medicine and Survival in Afghanistan and Beyond, with a private view of images from award-winning photographer Rupert Frere, and the museum's latest exhibition, The Price of a Mile.

To be published in May 2017, A Heavy Reckoning explores trauma and medicine in wartime from the First World War to Afghanistan and modern rehabiliation centres. Dr Mayhew's talk will be followed by a panel discussion and Q&A with military anaesthetists, book signing and drinks reception with a special canapé menu.

The Price of a Mile is the third in a series of exhibitions honouring doctors who gave anaesthesia and pain relief during the First World War, and explores the facilities and techniques available to medical teams

Suitable for

  • 18+
  • 16-17
  • 14-15


Tickets are £15 and must be purchased in advance.

Students tickets are £12.


Anaesthesia Heritage Centre
21 Portland Place
Greater London




020 7631 1650


020 7631 4352

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.