A research laboratory at the Boots Island Street site, Nottingham, c1930

Chemists to the Nation
Pharmacy to the World

Exploring the Global Dimensions of British Healthcare and Beauty with Boots The Chemists, 1919-1980

For 175 years, Boots The Chemists has been a staple of the British high-street and of British people’s lives.

But for much of its history, Boots was also a global company with shops, factories, and supply chains across the world. This research project aims to uncover the hidden stories behind the company and its familiar British health and beauty products. How reliant have British conceptions of health and well-being been on the British Empire? How were British notions of health and well-being spread around the world during the twentieth century, and how were these impacted by greater independence in the Global South?

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