A history of these pages

The About Cancer pages began life as CancerHelp UK, one of the first comprehensive cancer websites based in the UK. 

We provide information for people affected by cancer that is accessible, comprehensive and easy to read.

Co founders

The co founders of CancerHelp UK were Nick James and Sally Tweddle.

Nick James is a cancer specialist at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham and Professor of Oncology at the University of Birmingham Institute for Cancer Studies.

Sally Tweddle was an educationalist with an interest in literacy. Her husband's cancer and their search for cancer information online inspired CancerHelp UK.


CancerHelp UK was originally hosted on the Medical School server at the University of Birmingham.

The management of the site passed to The Cancer Research Campaign in 2000. In February 2002, The Cancer Research Campaign and the Imperial Cancer Research Fund merged to form Cancer Research UK. The site is now the About cancer section of Cancer Research UK's website.

Sarah Jane (Sally) Tweddle (1955–1999)

Sally was instrumental in setting up CancerHelp UK in 1994. At the time, most web material on cancer was aimed at professions and little information was available for patients and relatives.

Sally’s background was in education, and she saw that detailed material could be effectively presented to the general public online.  The website launch was a success, and earned Sally a prestigious Fellowship in Cancer Education from the Cancer Research Campaign. In this role, she promoted the transmission of information about cancer to the general public and to medical students.

Sadly, in 1999 Sally was diagnosed as having a widespread cancer of the duodenum. She died peacefully at her home with her family around her, as she had wished.

Last reviewed: 
30 Apr 2020
Next review due: 
29 Sep 2021