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To review publications in Clinical Rehabilitation over the last 30 years, discerning the original goals and whether they were met, and describing major trends over the 30 years.Personal review, backed up by data from ‘most read’ articles and ‘most cited’ articles, from yearly lists of all controlled trials published in the journal and other sources.The original goals included making rehabilitation better understood both within and outside the speciality, and more scientific. The first goal is probably not achieved, but the scientific standard of publication is much higher and it routinely recommends the use of guidelines appropriate to the publication. The journal has established a pre-eminent position in publishing randomized controlled trials, systematic reviews and articles on goal-setting. It has developed a series describing rehabilitation interventions. It aims to increase consideration of the theoretical basis of rehabilitation practices. We would like to think its impact has increased - but we cannot prove that!The journal has established some credentials as being a source of clinically relevant evidence and guidance across the whole field of rehabilitation and across most disabling conditions.