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Wales Cancer Research Centre,
Room 1TB2 31,
First Floor Main Building,
University Hospital of Wales,
Cardiff, CF14 4XN

Cancer in Wales: a Timeline

1911: Macmillan Cancer Support Founded

MACMILLAN founded by Douglas Macmillan under the name of the Society for the Prevention and Relief of Cancer.

1930: Marie Curie Hospital for Cancer and Allied Diseases is established

MARIE CURIE Hospital for Cancer and Allied Diseases is established, specialising in the radiological treatment of women suffering from cancer and allied diseases. The Marie Curie International Memorial was formally established on 6 July 1948, after the hospital was destroyed in an air raid in 1944.

1943: Tenovus founded

TENOVUS founded though didn’t focus their charitable efforts on cancer until the 1960s.

1956: Velindre hospital opens

VELINDRE Hospital opens. Two orthovoltage (X-ray therapy) machines and a single ward patient block.

1958: Marie curie launches day and night nursing service

Following a joint national survey carried out with the Queen's Institute of District Nursing, MARIE CURIE began running its own day and night home nursing service.

1959: The first Marie Curie Home for cancer patients opened in Wales

The first Marie Curie Home for cancer patients was opened in Fife in 1952. During the 1950s and early 1960s, the charity opened nine more Marie Curie Homes in adapted buildings, including at Holme Tower, Penarth in 1959 - now known as the Marie Curie - Cardiff and the Vale Hospice.

1961: First Linear Accelerator (Linac) installed at Velindre

First Linear Accelerator (Linac) installed at VELINDRE along with a new library, physics laboratories and diagnostic radiology suite.

1966: Institute for Cancer Research in Cardiff launched

TENOVUS set up the institute for Cancer Research in Cardiff.

1966: Cancer Research Wales Founded

CANCER RESEARCH WALES founded at Velindre Hospital.

1975: Scientists developed Tamoxifen

TENOVUS funded scientists developed Tamoxifen as a breast cancer treatment.

1975: First Macmillan nurse appointed

MACMILLAN CNACER SUPPORT appointed its first Macmillan nurse to support people with cancer.

1980: Tenovus pioneered mobile screening

TENOVUS pioneered mobile screening taking cervical screening to communities across Wales throughout the 80s.

1980: Macmillan nursing teams expanded

MACMILLAN invests £2.5m to expand Macmillan nursing teams across the UK.

1982: Princess Margaret opens new ward at Velindre

A new ward of 28 beds was opened at VELINDRE by Princess Margaret, and appropriately named the Princess Margaret Ward. Fully equipped Diagnostic Radiology Unit. New two-storey block.

1993: 1,000th Macmillan nurse appointed

MACMILLAN appoints its 1,000th Macmillan nurse.

1995: Velindre Trials Unit opens

VELINDRE Trials Unit opens. Dedicated Early Phase Trial Unit opened in 2013. Welsh patients could access early phase trials in Wales for the first time and not have to travel to England.

1997: Cancer Research Wales Chair of Oncology Appointed

Prof Malcolm Mason OBE - appointed as CANCER RESEARCH WALES Chair of Oncology - went on to transform how prostate cancer patients are treated across the world.

2001: Cancer Research Wales laboratories opened

CANCER RESEARCH WALES laboratories opened at VELINDRE CANCER CENTRE and helped the hospital gain centre of excellence status.

2002: Cancer Research UK founded

CANCER RESEARCH UK formed by merger of Imperial Cancer Research Fund and The Cancer Research Campaign.

2007: Experimental Cancer Medicine Centres launched

EXPERIMENTAL CANCER MEDICINE CENTRE (ECMC) launched including one in Cardiff jointly funded by CRUK and Department of Health in Wales.

2007: Cardiff joins Stratified Medicine Programme

Cardiff become a technical hub for the CANCE RESEARCH UK Stratified Medicine Programme

2009: Tenovus launch their mobile unit treatment facility

2009: Cancer Research UK starts funding Cancer Clinical Trials Unit

CANCER RESEARCH UK starts funding Cancer Clinical Trials Unit at Cardiff University

2009: Marie Curie begins funding palliative care research

MARIE CURIE begins funding palliative care research – investigations focused on improving care for people approaching the end of their lives. Marie Curie researchers were amongst the pioneers in this very new field.

2010: Cancer Research UK funds research nurses in Wales

CANCER RESEARCH UK starts funding 14 research nurses based around Wales to support patients on clinical trials

2010: Macmillan Chemotherapy Unit at opens at Prince Charles Hospital

MACMILLAN opens its Macmillan Chemotherapy Unit at Prince Charles Hospital.

2012: ECSCRI founded


2013: ECSCRI's first patent on anti-metastatic agent filed

The EUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE's first patent on anti-metastatic agent filed.

2013: First patient treated in Wales with Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy

First patient treated in Wales with Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy (SBRT) at VELINDRE CANCER CENTRE

2013: ECSCRI moves

In August theEUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE moves into new state of the art labs in Cardiff University's Hadyn Ellis Building.

2014: Marie Curie launched its strategic plan for 2014-19

MARIE CURIE launched its strategic plan for 2014-19 setting out its response to the challenges faced by people living with a terminal illness today. Marie Curie plans to offer care and support to more people, reach them sooner after their diagnosis and help them in different ways.

2014: Tiziana launched on AIM

TheEUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE's Richard Clarkson was the co-founder of Tiziana which was launched on the London Stock Exchange in April.

2015: Translational Research Committee's first meeting

The EUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE holds its first meeting of the Translational Research Committee.

2015: Prognostic biomarker in breast cancer patent filed

The EUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE's patent application for prognostic biomarker in breast cancer is filed.

2015: Wales cancer Research Centre founded

The WALES CANCER RESEARCH CENTRE is launched, funded by Welsh Government through Health and Care research Wales.

2015: Potential anti-metastatic agent developed

CANCER RESEARCH WALES funded scientists in Cardiff, develop CB1, the first in its class potential anti-metastatic agent.

2016: Alan Clarke memorial

The EUROPEAN CANCER STEM CELL RESEARCH INSTITUTE's director, Alan Clarke, sadly passes away, and a memorial symposium is held in his honour.

2016: Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre's funding renewed

The Cardiff EXPERIMENTAL CANCER MEDICINE CENTRE's funding is renewed for five years.