Henry Loose and Wattie Fletcher first met at a John Reidy's interventional day in 1987.  Over a cup of coffee they bemoaned the lack of a forum at which interventional radiologists could share their experience with others from all over the country.

In particular, they wanted district general hospital radiologists to play an equal part in the organisation.  A meeting of interventional radiologists from all over the country and two commercial representatives was arranged at Green College, Oxford on the 15th January 1988 to discuss the idea.

Establishing the British Society of Interventional Radiologists (BSIR)

The meeting approved the formation of the British Society of Interventional Radiologists with the object of advancing education in interventional radiology and assisting in the provision for further facilities for education and research in interventional radiology.  To achieve these objectives the society may (a) foster relationships between all those engaged in and associated with interventional radiology, (b) engage in fund raising and other activities in support of education and research in interventional radiology, (c) co-operate with other organisations associated with interventional radiology.  The steering committee was set up with a member from each of the English regions, two members from Scotland and one each from Wales and Northern Ireland with the object of making sure that the whole of Britain was represented.

The first BSIR annual scientific meeting

All known interventionalists were contacted and the response was so positive that the first meeting of the BSIR was on November 11th 1988 at Alveston Manor Hotel, Stratford-upon-Avon.  78 members attended with EWL Fletcher as Chairman, HWC Loose, Vice-Chairman, JF Reidy, Treasurer and RJ West, Secretary.  We started with a magnificent performance of Richard the III on Friday evening.  On Saturday there were 22 wide ranging papers followed by dinner at which Oscar Craig was the guest speaker.  Henry Loose organised the second meeting in York which was enthusiastically supported by interventionalists and commercial firms from all over the country.

The society has grown in an exponential manner and is now the largest radiological subspecialty society in the UK.  Membership currently stands at over 650 UK members, and 35 overseas members.