Skip to main content

'We Are Gay History' Project

The National Ambulance LGBT Network is working in partnership with the National Emergency Services Museum to capture and preserve our LGBT history, and develop resources for LGBT History Month.

The National Ambulance LGBT Network is proud to working alongside the National Emergency Services Museum.


Tell Your Story

In 2017 we published the first version of our 'We Are Gay History' booklet which is a collection of stories written by LGBT people who work, or have worked, in the ambulance service. This resource has been used by many services across the United Kingdom to raise the profile of some of the issues and influence cultural change.

We are looking for LGBT people who would like to add their story to our future resources. Working with the National Emergency Services Museum in Sheffield we are keen to look at how the lives of LGBT staff in the ambulance service have changed over the past decades.

In addition, we are also keen to hear from people who currently work for the ambulance service.

We are looking to launch a new version of this booklet in 2019 in time for LGBT History Month, so don't delay!

If you would like to be involved, please get in touch with one of the following:

  • Alistair Gunn
    Chair to National Ambulance LGBT Network

  • Kirsten Willis
    Deputy Chair to National Ambulance LGBT Network

  • Holly Roberts
    Visitor Experience Co-ordinator at the National Emergency Services Museum

  • Matthew Wakefield
    Chief Executive at the National Emergency Services Museum

You can view a copy of the 'We Are Gay History' booklet (2017 version) below.

'We Are Gay History' Booklet

Photos and Archives

We are currently exploring the possibility of producing an exhibition within the National Emergency Services Museum to enable us to continue to educate, inspire and prompt exciting new conversations. We are keen to hear from anyone who has photographs or objects that could contribute to this exciting venture.

We promise to treat all artefacts with the upmost respect. All items will be handled by the Museum’s collection professionals and any photographs, documents or similar items can be digitised, with originals being returned to their owner. Other items such as equipment and uniform can be donated or temporarily gifted on a loan basis.

If you would like to help with this project, or discuss it further, please do get in touch with one of the people listed above.

National Emergency Services Museum

The National Emergency Services Museum is based in Sheffield city centre. It originally opened in 1984 as the Sheffield Fire and Police Museum, and was given its present name in 2014. The Museum’s collection of over one million items has been in existence since 1931.


The Museum’s rotating displays mean that there are always new things to see. Currently there are over 40 vehicles on display ranging from a Victorian hearse to a 47 foot Tyne Class Lifeboat. The NESM is the final home for many former emergency service vehicles and as a National museum holds extensive archives. Several old ambulances from Yorkshire are housed at the museum including the 1950s City of Sheffield Austin Sheerline in its original dark blue livery, complete with wooden framed stretchers and an 1885 horse-drawn ambulance which would have operated around the Barnsley area. The Museum also owns a 1980s Ford ambulance with Hanlon body, which would have operated throughout West Yorkshire. This vehicle is a regular at public engagements including many arranged by Yorkshire Ambulance Service but is currently awaiting some light restoration work.

Trip Advisor rates the museum as 4.5 stars out of a possible 5, with 63% of visitors describing the museum as excellent. You can find more information about the museum and its collection at

Other useful contact information for the museum:

  • T: 0114 2491 999
  • E:

Please note that staff currently working for one of the blue light services can gain free entry into the museum on production of a valid identification card. Blue Light cards are not accepted.

Celebrating LGBT History Month

Inspired by LGBT History Month, which takes place in February each year, we have developed a set of useful resources to support LGBT Network events.

Ten Things to Know

In this pack we have included some resources to help you promote LGBT History within your Ambulance Trust. There is very little information specifically about Ambulance Services and so we have focussed on the LGBT rights timeline and medical links.

'Ten Things to Know' Resource

LGBT History Quiz

In this pack you will find everything to facilitate a quiz, including the answer sheet and posters. This quiz is based on the development of LGBT rights in the last 60 years.

'LGBT History Quiz' Resource

Rewind 100 Years

The aim of this resource is to give a positive overview of how LGBT rights, and understanding of our lives, has improved in the last 100 years. It also looks at how the Ambulance Service has moved forward in this time. Punctuated with some interesting and amusing facts, this resource will help you facilitiate a history event, and includes some suggested further reading and films to view.

'Rewind 100 Years' Presentation

'Rewind 100 Years' Guidance Notes