©Wellcome Library, London

Lord Nuffield was a generous patron of medical research, contributing £2 million in 1936 towards a postgraduate school for clinical research in Oxford. When interviewed by the Sunday Chronicle after his offer to build ‘iron lungs', he admitted that his first ambition as a boy was to be a surgeon. ‘But I had not the money for it, so I became a mechanic - the next best thing'. This Drinker respirator is an English model made by Siebe Gorman & Co.

Source: Special Report Series, Medical Research Council, 1939.