Old medical kit is a marvel

Nadeem Shah shows his medical memorabilia to members of Morpeth Antiquarian Society.
Nadeem Shah shows his medical memorabilia to members of Morpeth Antiquarian Society.

Morpeth Antiquarian Society

At the recent AGM of Morpeth Antiquarian Society Christopher Hudson (Chairman), Allan Wade (Vice Chairman), Pamela Cassells (General Secretary) and Gordon Shaw (Treasurer) were re-elected.

Kim Bibby-Wilson, Janet Brown and Angela Teasdale will continue as members of the Executive Committee. Other post holders are John Bibby (Conservation), Doreen Bolton (Registrar), Bettie Hogg (Social) and Pauline Chisholm (Projectionist and Sound).

The season 2016-17 is a momentous one for MAS, which will celebrate its 70th anniversary with a programme of lectures based on Morpeth. April 2017 will also see the 50th, or golden, Gathering.

The AGM was followed by a fascinating talk by Nadeem Shah, from Kirkhill Pharmacy.

He described how in 2006 he was asked by a friend if he would look at “something in the loft”. This turned out to be a bag containing an amazing collection of medical memorabilia belonging to a previous owner of the house who may have been a military doctor. There were bandages, creams, tablets, tourniquets, sedatives, field dressings, steel syringes, burners for boiling water and other instruments.

While showing the collection Mr Shah described how the items would be used in emergencies in combat by trained medical personnel. There were ‘ship labels’, which would be attached to casualties who were shipped to appropriate hospitals.

This has become the basis of Mr Shah’s collection, which can be seen at the pharmacy.

Another of his hobbies is cooking and he described the history and health benefits of chillies and turmeric.

Chris Hudson thanked Mr Shah for two great talks in one night as members gathered round to see the collection for themselves.

The next MAS talk is on Friday, June 24, at 7.15pm, in St James’s Centre, Wellway, when Michael Taylor will talk about Stephenson’s Lighthouses. Visitors are welcome to attend. Admission is £3.

The annual MAS Exhibition, Conflict and Fire, is on Saturday, June 11 and Sunday, June 12 in Morpeth Town Hall.