Historical RoSPA safety posters to go on show for the first time alongside Safety and Health Expo

A recently discovered collection of historical safety posters from the archive of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) will go on public display for the first time next week, alongside Safety and Health Expo.


The three-day exhibition - called The RoSPA Collection - will feature 40 iconic posters dating from the 1930s to the 1970s, covering all aspects of safety - occupational, road, home and leisure. The posters on display form part of a collection of more than 700 historical posters and artwork for posters which RoSPA discovered last year while clearing out its old warehouse.


Among the famous artists who produced artwork for RoSPA during this period were Tom Eckersley, Leonard Cusden and the cartoonist George Smith, better known as Gus. RoSPA, a charity which has been at the heart of accident prevention in the UK and around the world for more than 95 years, has produced a video about the discovery of the posters and artwork.


Next week’s exhibition, which is free and open to everyone, will be in the Warwick Suite at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole Hotel, where RoSPA Awards ceremonies will also be taking place. It is being held alongside Safety and Health Expo, which is taking place at the NEC.


Opening times are 11.30am-4pm on Tuesday, May 15, and 10am-4pm on Wednesday, May 16 and Thursday, May 17.

Janice Cave, RoSPA’s history project manager, said: “We were astonished at the wide variety of styles used by the different artists and the high calibre of their work. Yet their messages are just as valid today as they were when they were created decades ago.”

Graphic design history expert Dr Paul Rennie, of Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, who is working with RoSPA on its historical poster project, said: “The exhibition is the first phase of a project that does two things: the first is to share this amazing work with colleagues and friends and also with a wider public - the work is testimony to a long and continuous effort to improve the quality of working and everyday life for ordinary people; and the second is to showcase the remarkable graphic and artistic talent supported by RoSPA over the years.”

Due to the fragile nature of the posters, they have been reproduced photographically to ensure they can be exhibited safely.

See www.rospa.com/events/rospacollection/ for exhibition details. High quality framed and unframed art prints, canvases and posters from The RoSPA Collection will be available to purchase from http://www.rospaprints.com/.

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