Getting involved to improve cancer research

At The Christie, we are committed to involving our patients, their families and the wider public in our work. This helps us deliver a service that best meets the needs of our patients.

There are a variety of ways that members of the public can get involved in improving cancer research at The Christie that don't involve taking part in clinical trials themselves.

Ways to become involved

  • Join the Greater Manchester Patient and Public Cancer Research Advisory Group – a group for anyone affected by cancer (whether as a current or former patient, or as a care giver or a family member of someone who has or had cancer) to use their experiences to improve the way research is designed and run. You don't need any experience of research to take part. The group runs both online and through face-to-face meetings so everyone can get involved.
  • Join the Clinical Research Facility Involvement and Engagement Group – a group for anyone who would like to use their experiences to work with the Manchester Clinical Research Facilities (based on Oxford Road, in Wythenshawe and at The Christie) to improve patient experience, awareness and involvement in research carried out in these facilities. The group holds face-to-face meetings every two months.
  • Join VoiceUp - a group for young people aged 11-24 years, living in Greater Manchester to have their say on research taking place in Greater Manchester. The group meets every three months in Manchester City centre and works on a range of health and research related projects. There are also online opportunities.
  • Raising the profile of patient and public involvement and engagement

To make sure research is done in the best way possible, we want to include people with a wide range of backgrounds in our groups. We are therefore actively encouraging people from Black, Asian, Minority, Ethnic and Refugee (BAMER) backgrounds or people who identify as disabled in particular to get in touch as we aware these groups are currently under-represented in research. Please let us know how we can best support you to be involved. 

All these groups are run by the public programmes team, a specialist unit who work to make health research relevant and accessible for all. If you are interested in joining any of these groups or want to find out more, please contact: publicprogrammes@mft.nhs.uk or call 0161 276 6614.

These opportunities are funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Manchester Biomedical Research Centre and Clinical Research Facility.

Patient and staff experiences of clinical research

I have been a patient at The Christie for 14 years. I wouldn't want to be treated anywhere else. I am a phase 1 clinical trial patient and have been fortunate to have access to the most up-to-date cancer treatments, and have been treated by, and met some incredibly inspiring people along the way. 
Having a genetic cancer that has plagued my family for generations, personalised medicine has been the difference between life and death for me. The knowledge gained from it will have far-reaching implications for my family and many more like us.

Diane Brooks, phase 1 clinical trial patient treated in NIHR CRUK Christie CRF

Clinical research had become a life-saver for me. In late 2014 I had exhausted all of these options and my cancer was progressing unchecked at an alarming rate. My oncologist referred me to the Christie Clinical Research Facility and I was accepted onto a trial for an experimental drug which targeted specific mutations in my cancer. 

Since starting the trial I have not looked back. I am so fortunate that it become very effective immediately. The care I have received and the lovely attitude of the staff in the Clinical Trials Unit is second to none. I count myself as very lucky to be a patient there and feel like I have experienced a miracle.

Geraldine Peddie, phase 1 clinical trial patient treated in NIHR CRUK Christie CRF

I love the reality that the trial treatments of today have the potential to become innovative and potentially curative treatments of the future.

Christie clinical research nurse in NIHR CRUK Christie CRF

I love being first point of contact for patients on clinical trials, educating and supporting patients and their loved ones throughout their cancer journey.

Christie clinical research nurse in NIHR CRUK Christie CRF



Manchester University Manchester Academic Health Science CentreCancer Research UK National Institute for Health Records