Helping the nation save lives since 1877
This year we celebrate a remarkable 140 years of helping the
nation save lives, through teaching people up and down the country
vital first aid skills, so that whenever an emergency occurs they
can be ready to save the day.
On the 10th July 1877, we were originally set up by the
Venerable Order of St John as a voluntary organisation called the
St John Ambulance Association. Our aim was to set up first aid
training sessions across the country, particularly for workers in
heavy industry where there was a great need to learn life saving
skills. During the 19th century industrial workers rarely had
access to medical help, since accidents in the workplace were
frequent, death or disability from injuries was common.
Over the next 140 years our charitable work rapidly expanded. As
well as providing first aid in local communities, our volunteers
have also played their part in many major historical events, such
as the world wars and more recently, the London Olympics. Keep
an eye out online as we reveal more fascinating stories from our
past throughout the year and celebrate our incredible achievements
over the past 140 years.
How you can support us
With the continued support of all of our amazing volunteers,
donors and dedicated team-members, together we can do more than
just respond to emergencies – we can continue to create the next
generation of life savers. Help support our work for future
generations by making a donation
online or find out
more about becoming a volunteer.
Celebrate our 140th anniversary
Over the next year we’re encouraging all of you to host your own
party or event within your local communities. To help you
celebrate, we’ve created
online party packs which are available to download for
some instant, fun celebration ideas and decorations.
Celebrate our 140th anniversary at a museum family fun
Join us at the Museum of the Order of St John to celebrate 140
years of first aid! From bear bandaging competitions and first aid
demonstrations to crafts and stories from a World War II nurse,
there’s something for everyone to get stuck into!
When: 12:30pm- 3:30pm on Wednesday 23
Where: Museum of the Order of St John, St John's Gate, St
John's Lane, Clerkenwell, London EC1M 4DA
Find out more