Since the BSAVA was founded in 1957, the Association has been committed to its mission of promoting excellence in small animal practice with a strong focus on innovation in science and education.
As 2017 marked the 60th anniversary of the BSAVA, we’ve created a simple timeline which illustrates some of the key dates in the Association’s history interspersed with a few world events.
Inaugural meeting of the BSAVA
The inaugural meeting of the BSAVA was held on the 7th March 1957.
In 1957 the membership subscription was 2 guineas (£2.10).
The first Congress was held between the 28th-30th March 1958 at the Shaftesbury Hotel London and was attended by 245 vets.
C.E Woodrow became first president of BSAVA
Negotiations took place with publishers regarding the production of the Journal of Small Animal Practice.
Third annual Congress
The third annual Congress took place in the Washington Hotel, London between 18th – 20th March
The first four issues of JSAP, edited by Bruce Vivash Jones were issued this year.
Fourth BSAVA Congress
The fourth BSAVA Congress held in the Kensington Palace Hotel, London was the first International Small Animal Veterinary Congress.
At the AGM it was recognised that the Constitution of the Association needed to be amended because of the growth of the Association and it was hoped that this would be achieved by 1963.
There was a proposal from BVA to reduce the number of BSAVA Representatives on the BVA council from 6 to 4.
C.E. Woodrow published first publication for members
One of the first records of a publication for members can be attributed to C.E. Woodrow – a book on The Export and Import of Dogs and Cats.
It was proposed that Standing Committee meetings should all be held on the same day, some weeks before the Executive Committee meeting; this would allow all members to attend meetings in London which was the preferred venue.
The Simon Award was first introduced.
C.E. Woodrow was awarded Honorary Membership
As the first president of the Association, Mr C.E. Woodrow occupied a particularly important place in the history of the BSAVA. His contribution to its life and growth had been considerable. It was right and proper that he should be honoured by the Association with the presentation of the Scroll of Honorary Membership.
The Past Presidents Committee was formed, to act as a continuity committee in relation to Congress and advance bookings. It was decided that the Chairman of this committee would be the Senior Vice President.
The Executive Committee changed its name to Council.
Proposed increase in membership fee
Reports on the work of standing committees were requested for the Annual Report. An Extraordinary General Meeting was held to discuss a proposed increase in the membership fee.
The Animal Nursing volumes 1 and 2 became Jones's Animal Nursing
The Animal Nursing, volumes 1 and 2, first published in 1966, became Jones’s Animal Nursing for its second edition in 1972. Although the textbook was re-titled Veterinary Nursing in 1994.
JSAP moved to monthly editions from January 1966.
The Association organised a symposium ‘Diseases of animals communicable to man’.
BSAVA agreed not to sponsor any commercial products
BSAVA agreed to not be involved in sponsoring/supporting any commercial product.
Membership of the Association reached 1099
The twelfth annual BSAVA Congress hosted the third WSAVA Congress at the Royal Lancaster Hotel, London.
Membership of the Association reached 1099.
Council held discussions regarding Product Endorsement
Council held discussions concerning Product Endorsement.
Council proposed that the Association should join the European Union of Practising Veterinary Surgeons, jointly with SPVS and contribute £50 towards delegates travelling expenses providing SPVS agreed.
Melton Award introduced
A new Melton Award sponsored by Pet Foods LTD was introduced. The Award would be presented annually to the veterinary surgeon in practice, who, in the opinion of the Awards Committee, had contributed the most during the previous year, in the field of Avian care, medicine and surgery. The first recipient of this Award was P N Humphreys.
The first true manual was published
The first true ‘Manual’ was published, entitled A Manual of Practice Improvement, edited by Ian Hughes. It was loose-leaf and ring-bound so could be updated as required.
Clinical Research Trust Fund was set up
Council set up the Clinical Research Trust Fund which later became known as PetSavers.
The Constitution changed at the AGM to allow full members to pay one half of the full subscription the year following their 65th birthday.
Regional Coordinator post introduced
An EGM took place to discuss the proposed increase in membership fees, the increase was agreed but not unanimously.
The post of Regional Coordinator was introduced into the Association.
A proposal was made at Council that the next four Council meetings were non-smoking environments.
Congress delegates attended the premiere of 'It shouldn't happen to a vet'
A Manual of the Care and Treatment of Children’s Pets (Cowie, 1976) was published and was the most successful of the early manuals with over 1000 copies sold.
Congress continued to grow and moved to the Cunard International Hotel, London where delegates attended the premiere of the film ‘It shouldn’t happen to a vet’
Charges for tea and coffees at Council were introduced – 25p per person.
The Manual of Laboratory Techniques was published
The Manual of Laboratory Techniques (Parkin, 1977) was published.
Congress reached record attendance at the time
The attendance for Congress in 1978 was 923 people, which for then was an all time record.
The Manual of Anaesthesia (Furber, 1979) was published.
As the number of trade stands approached 50, BSAVA Congress became the largest veterinary event in the UK.
A Manual of Anaesthesia (Furber, 1979) was published.
The Association membership were asked to comment on the Royal College specialisation proposals. 87% of the membership responses were in general favour with the preliminary proposals and this was fed back to the Royal College via BVA. The Royal College was primarily interested in the number of practitioners who would wish to participate in specialist courses which might be set up.
A review of the Vet Surgeons Act was proposed and the membership were asked to comment.
The Association donated £1000 to the RCVS Building Fund
The Association made the first move towards being able to offer payment of membership via Direct Debit.
The Association donated £1000 to the RCVS Building Fund.
The Association strongly supported the resolution in relation to examination prior to vaccination of dogs and cats.
JSAP was published by the Association
JSAP would no longer be published by Blackwells Scientific Publication but by the Association.
BSAVA celebrated 25th Anniversary with Congress Ball
BSAVA celebrated its 25th Anniversary with a special Congress Ball at the Savoy Hotel, London. The Association now had 2636 members.
The Manual of Exotic Pets and Feline Medicines and Therapeutics was published
The 4th Edition of Jones Animal Nursing was published, along with the manual of Exotic Pets and Feline Medicines and Therapeutics
The BSAVA Corporate identity was redesigned
A decision was made to have a discounted ‘members price’ on book sales; this benefit to members has remained ever since. The Woodrow Award was presented for the first time.
Council approved a budget of £1000 to redesign the BSAVA Corporate identity.
The Association made representations via BVA
The Association made representations via BVA on a range of subjects during the year.
At the AGM in 1988 the President asked that all members keep themselves acquainted with what was happening in the political arena
The Manual of Neurology was published
The Association issued a statement on pet health insurance.
The Association supported an amendment to the Dog Licence recommending a dog registration scheme.
Hill’s sponsored a new Award – The Amoroso Award which would be presented at Congress in 1989.
A donation of £250 was made to BVNA to allow them to purchase equipment for their office.
The Frank Beattie Travel Scholarship was introduced at Congress
Congress moved to Harrogate and hosted the fourteenth World Congress. This meant more space and more delegates than ever before.
The Manual of Endocrinology and the Manual of Radiography were available at Congress 1989.
The Frank Beattie Travel Scholarship was introduced at Congress.
The first BSAVA European Congress was held in Harrogate
The first BSAVA European Congress was held in Harrogate
The Practice Standards Scheme was initiated by the Association
The Practice Standards Scheme was initiated by the Association and was initially supported by the BVA and RCVS.
As Congress continued to grow, BSAVA made another move, this time to the ICC in Birmingham.
BSAVA entered into a marketing partnership with Manson Publishing Limited
The Association agreed that it should enter into a marketing partnership with Manson Publishing Limited to help realise the full sales potential of the manuals.
The Practice Standard Scheme work continued, entirely funded by the BSAVA.
A new European Committee was formed, now known as International Affairs. There was a proposal that BSAVA had a representative on FECAVA.
The Association officially became a charity
The Association officially became a charity.
Initial discussions took place on the Small Animal Formulary, it was hoped that it would be launched at Congress 1994 where it would be sold to members at a cost of £7 and £10 for non-members.
Lynne Hill became the first female President of the BSAVA
Lynne Hill became the first female President of the BSAVA.
A feasibility study was commissioned into the BSAVA holding the 1997 WSAVA Congress.
The Clinical Research Trust Fund changed its name to PetSavers
BSAVA’s charity, the Clinical Research Trust Fund, changed its name to PetSavers.
A joint WSAVA, BSAVA, FECAVA Congress was held in Birmingham
A joint WSAVA, BSAVA, FECAVA Congress was held in Birmingham.
Brian Singleton opened Woodrow House, BSAVA's new purpose-built headquarters
Founding member, Brian Singleton, opened Woodrow House, BSAVA’s new purpose-built headquarters in Gloucester.
Membership reached over 5000
Membership of the Association reached over 5000 as the organisation entered the new millennium.
Congress offered a paired down social programme out of respect for colleagues
Congress offered a paired down social programme out of respect for colleagues affected by the outbreak of Foot and Mouth disease.
Congress became a multi-site event
Once again Congress had outgrown itself and so the exhibition and registration moved across to the National Indoor Arena and Congress became a multi-site event.
The BSAVA Manual of Exotic Pets (fourth edition, eds. Meredith and Redrobe, 2002) had sold nearly 7,500 copies and remains the most successful BSAVA manual to date.
Prescription Only Medicine crisis
Much time was spent by the President, Freda Scott-Park at Westminster tackling the Prescription Only Medicine (POM) crisis on behalf of the profession.
The 2nd edition of Canine and Feline Emergency and Critical Care manual was published
The BSAVA Manual of Canine and Feline Emergency and Critical Care 2nd edition was published.
The association celebrated its 50th anniversary.
A new veterinary nurse membership category was introduced
A new veterinary nurse membership category was introduced.
The BSAVA Manual of Exotic Pets 5th edition was published.
BSAVA hosted WSAVA and FECAVA Congresses in Birmingham
BSAVA hosted both WSAVA and FECAVA Congresses in Birmingham.
BSAVA President Tricia Colville abseiled to raise money for PetSavers
BSAVA President Tricia Colville abseiled at Congress to raise money for PetSavers. Party Night at Congress became VetFest.
Susan Dawson was inducted as the third female President in consecutive years
Susan Dawson was inducted as the third female President in consecutive years, reflecting the gender shift in the profession.
The BSAVA celebrated its 60th anniversary.
The BSAVA celebrated its 60th anniversary.