Our history

We’ve been providing support and information about lymphoma for over 30 years, helping thousands of people affected by the UK’s fifth most common
cancer. Read about how the charity started and our progress over the years to become Lymphoma Action - the only UK charity dedicated to lymphoma.

2018

We become Lymphoma Action - launching our new name with a fresher look and a new website - to make sure we reach even more people affected by lymphoma. 

Ropinder Gill is appointed as Lymphoma Action's new chief executive.

2017

We roll out Live your Life - living with and beyond lymphoma - our survivorship programme, helping hundreds of people who have come to the end of their treatment, or are on watch and wait, to take control of their lives.

2016

Lymphoma Association pilots a lymphoma specific Clinical Psychologist programme, recognising the need for lymphoma specific counselling and support.

2015

Lymphoma Association teams up with Royal College of GPs to launch a training course for GPs that will help them spot lymphoma earlier and provide the best possible care to people with lymphoma.

2014

We launch a project to vastly improve our online information offering for people affected by lymphoma, resulting in a surge in the number of people who visit our website.

2013

Jonathan Pearce is appointed as Lymphoma Association chief executive.

2012

Founding trustee Felicity Hilder, wife of the late Tim Hilder, is awarded an OBE in the New Year Honours list.

Lymphoma Association accredited with The Information Standard quality mark in recognition of its excellence in producing patient information.

2011

The Association celebrates its 25th anniversary year, with a special thanksgiving service in St Martin-in-the-Fields in September and a musical evening in West Wycombe Park. 

A fundraising football match between soap stars and former Derby County FC players is attended by more than 1,000 people.

The charity features on the television news twice as part of Lymphatic Cancer Awareness Week and launches an e-newsletter system for the first time.

2010

The Lymphoma Association helpline is reaccredited with The Helplines Association (THA) Quality Standard.

2009

The PITS campaign is launched to raise awareness about lymphoma in the under 30s age group and joint regional patient conferences are organised with Leukemia CARE. 

2008

The Lymphoma Association begins to provide booklets and information sheets about lymphoma free of charge to health professionals and a revamped website is launched.

2007

The Lymphoma Association helpline achieves the Telephone Helplines Association (THA) Quality Standard and throughout the year nearly 6,000 enquiries are received.

Sir Menzies Campbell fronts the Lymphoma Association’s BBC Lifeline Appeal.

The Lymphoma Association’s income rises to over £1 million.

2006

The first annual Beacons of Hope Award ceremony is held and the Lymphoma Association wins the GlaxoSmithKline Impact Award which recognises and promotes excellence in community healthcare.

2005

The Lymphoma Association hosts a global press conference in London to mark World Lymphoma Awareness Day and the Lymphatic Cancer Alliance launches the Lymphoma Manifesto. 

The charity’s Lymphomas booklet is awarded first prize in the British Medical Association patient information awards, the first of several such accolades to be received over the coming years.

2004

Lymphoma Association funds five clinical nurse specialist positions in NHS haematology units.

The Lymphoma Association sponsors the watch and wait clinical trial for patients with low grade non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL).

2003

The Lymphoma Association helps found the Lymphoma Coalition, an international network of patient groups. The LIFEsite website for young people is launched.

2002

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) invites the Lymphoma Association to submit a report to present patients’ views about the use of rituximab alongside standard chemotherapy for high grade non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

2001

The charity is awarded a Communiqé Award for best use of its website.

2000

The first Lymphatic Cancer Awareness Week is launched.

1999

The Lymphoma Association moves to its premises in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire and the helpline becomes a freephone service.

1998

HDLA becomes the Lymphoma Association and a website is launched.

1995

The Medical Advisory Panel (a group of clinicians who specialise in the field of lymphoma) is formed to advise the helpline team. The Vinca (periwinkle) is introduced as the logo because of the use of one of its derivatives as an ingredient in treatment for lymphoma.

1994

Tim Hilder loses his battle against lymphoma. The HDA becomes the Hodgkin’s Disease and Lymphoma Association (HDLA) and handles 2,000 enquiries.

1993

Marti Caine (who is receiving treatment for NHL) appeals to the nation on Radio 4 ‘The Week’s Good Cause’. By the end of the year there are 1,000 members.

1992

HDA moves from Tim and Felicity Hilder’s dining room to its first office accommodation.

1988

HDA starts producing its own literature and the helpline is established.

1987

HDA becomes a membership organisation. By the end of the year it has 147 members and an income of nearly £1,500.

1986

The Hodgkin’s Disease Association (HDA) was granted its charity status by the Charity Commission for England and Wales in June. The idea for a support group for patients and families affected by Hodgkin’s Disease came from two Hodgkin’s patients, Lewis Cash and Richard Franklin. With the active support of Dr Tony Jelliffe, the founder of the British National Lymphoma Investigation, they brought together a group of former patients to found the Hodgkin’s Disease Association in 1983. Lewis became the first chair. Tim Hilder was invited to join the group in 1984 and took over the chair in 1985. The first telephone helplines were operated from Tim and Felicity Hilder’s front room.