11 December 2018

40 years of IVF history: Opening up access to the Lesley Brown archive

Join us for a very special event to celebrate the 40th anniversary of IVF and Louise Brown, the first IVF baby.

Louise will be in conversation with Martin Powell who worked extensively with Lesley Brown, Louise’s mother. The talk will start at 6.30pm with a chance to see some of the IVF archives first.
Free tea and coffee will be served.

The development of in vitro fertilisation, or IVF, culminating in the ‘miraculous’ birth of Louise Joy Brown on 25 July 1978, was a defining moment for reproductive technology pioneered by British researchers.

Louise’s birth followed ten years of experimentation, hundreds of failed attempts and many setbacks for the scientists responsible for this remarkable achievement.

The Lesley Brown Archive has recently been donated to Bristol Culture. Objects include presents from the Brazilian Embassy, hate mail from America, and a letter telling Lesley Brown she is in the early stages of pregnancy.

A small number of these items have been on display at the Science Museum and will be added to the permanent galleries at M Shed in 2019.

Image: © Mark Small