Charley your very good health.

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Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)

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Charley your very good health. Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0). Source: Wellcome Collection.

About this work


A cartoon featuring the character Charley. Charley has the workings of the National Health Service explained to him.


UK : Central Office of Information, 1948.

Physical description

1 encoded moving image (10 min.) : sound, color



Copyright note

Crown copyright, managed by BFI.

Terms of use

Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales

Language note

In English

Creator/production credits

Produced by Central Office of Information. Made by Halas and Batchelor Cartoon Films. Design and story by John Halas and Joy Batchelor.


This video was made from material preserved by the BFI National Archive


Segment 1 As Charley cycles through town a male narrator explains that there is now a new health service organised on a national scale that everyone will pay for. Charley says that he does not need such a system. The narrator supposes what would happen if Charley had a bike accident and had to go to hospital. He also points out that Charley's wife and child would also be covered under the new system. Charley's wife says she cannot afford to get ill anyway. Time start: 00:00:00:00 Time end: 00:04:00:15 Length: 00:04:00:15
Segment 2 The narrator explains that child and maternity services will all be improved. The narrator explains a little more about the new organisational structure, which will include more hospitals and health centres. Charley is seen falling ill, seeing a specialist, having an x-ray and receiving drugs and a blood transfusion, all of which are covered. Charley asks about people who do not want to use the NHS, such as George, a well-to-do man in town. George is seen at the top of ladder tending a tree. Charley asks George what he would do if he fell off the ladder, and George says he would attend a private hospital ward. Charley points out he may need specialist care and to see many doctors, which would cost a fortune. George thanks him for pointing this out. Charley and his family are seen cycling on a tandem bike as the narrator reminds the audience that the new scheme is comprehensive and will both treat and prevent illness. Time start: 00:04:00:15 Time end: 00:08:35:07 Length: 00:04:34:18



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