The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre appoints new clinical leadership team


Clatterbridge Cancer Centre makes a series of significant appointments and promotions to introduce a greater clinical presence in its leadership team

The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre NHS Foundation Trust, one of the largest networked cancer centres in the UK, appointed its first full-time medical director in 2012 and has since worked to build on this presence by introducing three new clinical directors and three new general managers to its senior team, placing clinical expertise, research specialism and patient care at the heart of its management structure.

Andrew Cannell, chief executive, has driven the clinician-led management restructure. He said: “Clinical expertise and a strong focus on patient care are paramount for The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre and it is crucial that our management team reflects this. Our new clinical directors are responsible for our core services – chemotherapy, radiation services and integrated care – and are each supported by a general manager bringing strong medical and managerial expertise to the senior team.

“I am delighted to have recruited candidates of the highest calibre to these challenging roles, blending external appointments with the tremendous talent and expertise that already exists within the trust. This wealth of experience, combined with the executive team and wider board, strengthens the management structure to ensure we’re continuing to deliver world-class treatment and care, while further enhancing our research capabilities and services to help transform cancer care in the region for the future.”

Dr Peter Kirkbride heads up the new clinical management team as medical director. He joined the trust in 2012 from his previous role as clinical director for radiation services at Weston Park Hospital in Sheffield. His wealth of knowledge in national oncology practice has helped to shape the new team. He is the national clinical lead for radiotherapy improvement for the National Cancer Action Team and has current membership in the National Radiotherapy Implementation Group. He is also the chairman of the national radiotherapy awareness initiative and the clinical lead of the NICE’s prostate cancer guideline development group.

Chemotherapy services

Dr Ernie Marshall, consultant in medical oncology, with more than 15 years’ experience, has been appointed clinical director for chemotherapy. He specialises in melanoma, lung cancer and supportive care and has been at The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre since 1997, leading the Merseyside & Cheshire Cancer Research Network over recent years. He is also a leading UK chief investigator in melanoma and supportive care research, including the first-ever national portfolio of eye melanoma studies. Dr Marshall has been the principal investigator in more than 50 research trials, is currently a member of the National Cancer Research Institute melanoma clinical studies group, and is the UK lead on the International rare Cancer Initiative (IRCI) for eye melanoma. As the lead on service development in the field of acute oncology, he recently edited the first textbook and a national toolkit for emergency medicine departments. He is also chairman of the national acute oncology sub-committee within the chemotherapy clinical reference group.

Joan Spencer has joined The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre as general manager of chemotherapy. She brings with her more than 25 years’ experience in cancer care and management, including award-winning work in developing patient information. She joins from Royal Liverpool and Broadgreen University Hospitals Trust where she was directorate manager for breast and endocrine services as well as cancer services manager. She was also the clinical lead for Liverpool John Moores University’s breast cancer nursing degree course.

Radiation services

Dr Brian Haylock is one of the most-experienced consultants at The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre and has been appointed clinical director of radiation services. He has been an oncologist since 1985, and from 1991-99 worked at Vancouver Centre, a leading cancer research centre in Canada. He has served two terms on the National Cancer Research Institute brain tumour study group, and a three-year term on the Royal College of Radiologists Faculty. Now an officer on the council of the Royal Council of Radiologists, he has developed a specialism in colorectal, upper gastro-intestinal tract and central nervous system cancer and spearheaded the clinical development of the £17m Clatterbridge Cancer Centre Liverpool in 2011.

Julie Massey brings more 25 years’ experience in clinical and research roles to join the management team as general manager of radiation services. She is a qualified radiographer and has spent more than seven years at The Clatterbridge in senior roles including radiotherapy and imaging services manager. She is a member of the Society and College of Radiographers Radiotherapy Advisory Group and chairs its national radiotherapy workforce group.

Integrated care

Dr Caroline Brammer, an oncologist specialising in head and neck cancers, has joined the centre as clinical director of integrated care to develop even more seamless and more patient-centred approaches to service configuration and care. She joins from New Cross Hospital in Wolverhampton where she was clinical director for oncology and haematology. She has been active in many national multicentre clinical trials, particularly for head and neck cancers.

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Finally, Helen Ferns, general manager for integrated care, has joined the team from The Christie Clinical Research Facilities, where she was operations director and divisional lead nurse for clinical research. She was also the lead manager responsible for developing the UK’s largest Early Phase Cancer Clinical Trials Unit. She is a registered nurse with more than 25 years’ experience in oncology, including leading nursing teams and corporate services. She previously worked at The Clatterbridge Cancer Centre between 2000 and 2002, when she set up the Colorectal Cancer Nursing Service.