University to unveil ‘blue plaque’ to celebrate dentists who invented the airbag


The University of Birmingham will unveil a new plaque to celebrate the work of two dentists, whose work has saved thousands of lives.

On Monday 18thMarch, 100 years since the two dentists filed the patent for the airbag, the blue plaque will be unveiled at a special event at the University’s School of Dentistry.

The plaque pays tribute to the University of Birmingham alumnus Harold Round and his colleague Arthur Parrott, who were both involved in developing an early version of the airbag to prevent impact jaw fractures during the First World War.

The event is open to the public and will showcase both Harold Round’s and Arthur Parrott’s work as well as featuring other University of Birmingham innovations in dentistry.

It will include lunch and a presentation on the history of dentistry by Jonathan Reinarz, a Professor at the University of Birmingham.

There will also be an opportunity to view some historical dental instruments and experience first-hand how challenging the profession has been across the ages.

The public can also view the state-of-the-art facility in the Birmingham Dental Hospital and School of Dentistry.

Professor Iain Chapple, Head of the University of Birmingham’s School of Dentistry, said: “Since its earliest days, the University of Birmingham has been a home to innovative pioneers who have effected change in the world we live.

“The University’s Blue Plaque Trail, modelled on schemes adopted in many British cities, celebrates their ground-breaking achievements and we are delighted that two such accomplished pioneers in dentistry will now be honoured as part of this trail.

“We hope this latest blue plaque will inspire those who pass by and will encourage continued innovation and achievement in the future.”

The blue plaques around the campus serve as reminders of the immense accomplishments of the men and women who have worked at the University.

Since it received its Royal Charter in 1900, the University of Birmingham has been responsible for an immense number of innovations, inventions and breakthroughs, including the creation of the Cavity Magnetron which made possible both radar and microwave ovens and changed the world as we knew it.

Health and life expectancy throughout the world have been improved through the work of the University of Birmingham, with developments such as the variable-rate heart pacemaker, pioneering experiments in skin grafting, and the synthesis of Vitamin C.

The University of Birmingham is ranked amongst the world’s top 100 institutions. The School of Dentistry is ranked 13th in the world QS University rankings 2019, largely based upon its research.

The general public must register in advance if they wish to attend the unveiling of the blue plaque on March 18th 2019 by completing the BOOKING FORM




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