Annual Review 2020

This year The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust continued to ensure cancer patients at the hospital, across the UK and around the world can benefit from the advances being made in cancer research, treatment and care.

Download the full report to read the Chairman and Chief Executive joint statement.

Read the statement

Who we are and what we do


The complexity of cancer is a constant challenge. The Royal Marsden, alongside The Institute of Cancer Research, utilises an ambitious, patient centred approach that recognises this complexity and develops smarter, kinder treatments for the benefit of cancer patients worldwide


Early diagnosis is crucial to improving survival for cancer patients, and is vital for the research of cancer. Together with RM Partners, we are committed to improving early diagnosis rates, reducing variation in outcomes and increasing capacity to ensure swift diagnosis of cancer for patients.


Patients at The Royal Marsden receive personalised treatment relating to their diagnosis. With innovative equipment including the latest in robotic surgery, radiotherapy and genomics, we ensure every patient has access to the very best treatment through every stage of their cancer journey.


It is vital that the emotional and psychological needs of patients are met throughout their cancer treatment, which is why staff at The Royal Marsden treat the whole person, not just their illness with a compassionate, caring approach for them and their friends and family.


Our achievements

See the full picture

In the National Cancer Patient Experience Survey results, the Trust placed in the top ten of Trusts in England and top trust in London, scoring 9 out of 10 for overall patients received

The Trust retained its outstanding rating from the Care Quality Commission in January 2020, following an inspection in September 2019 and the well led inspection in November 2019

With over 900 trials open, the Trust offers the largest number of cancer research trials to patients, continuing its role as a global research leader

A new cancer surgical hub, the first in the country, was designed and led by the Trust and RM partners, to treat cancer patients safely during COVID-19


Our highlights

Research and innovation

  • Advanced radiotherapy technology could safely deliver curative treatment for some prostate cancer patients in just one or two weeks, according to research by The Royal Marsden and the ICR.

  • In 2019, The Royal Marsden was approved by NHS England to deliver a new type of immunotherapy for patients with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B cell lymphoma. CAR T cell therapy uses the patient’s own immune system to fight cancer.

Read more on page 27

Treatment and care

  • The first patient in the world was treated at The Royal Marsden in late 2019 with an innovative new treatment, acoustic cluster therapy. Acoustic cluster therapy is a new approach which uses microscopic clusters of bubbles and liquid droplets to enhance the delivery of simultaneously administered routine chemotherapy drugs to tumours.

  • The Royal Marsden was approved by NHS England to deliver a new type of immunotherapy for patients with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B cell lymphoma. CAR T cell therapy uses the patient’s own immune system to fight cancer.

Read more on page 31

Modernising infrastructure

  • Advanced stereo-tactic radiotherapy technology is now available for complex treatments at The Royal Marsden in Sutton. The newest model of a CyberKnife was delivered in November 2019 and is now operational.

  • The Royal Marsden was granted planning permission in late 2019 for the new state of the art cancer facility, the Oak Cancer Centre. The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity is raising £70 million for the Oak Cancer Centre, which is named in recognition of a £25 million donation from Oak Foundation.

Read more on page 35

Financial stability and best value

  • The Trust has been running a Transformation Programme since 2013. During this time the programme has delivered a number of benefits for patients including the introduction of a new patient hotline and an Acute Oncology Service at Sutton.

  • Over the next three years, The Royal Marsden Digital Transformation Programme will use technology to transform cancer care, staff experience, and the way in which patients and families experience its services.

Read more on page 39

The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity

The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity raises money solely to support The Royal Marsden, a world leading cancer centre. They ensure our nurses, doctors and research teams can provide the very best care and develop life saving treatments, which are used across the UK and around the world.

In December 2019, thousands of beautiful white roses lit up Mayfair’s Grosvenor Square as part of a light installation to support the Charity. Supporters dedicated an illuminated rose – either in person or online. The Ever After Garden raised £94,000.

A line up of music legends, including Sir Tom Jones, Van Morrison, Eric Clapton and Bonnie Tyler, performed their biggest hits in front of thousands of fans at the O2 Arena in March 2020 at Music for the Marsden, raising £1 million.

In May 2019, almost 4,000 supporters took part in The Banham Marsden March, walking between the hospitals to raise £1.7 million for The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity.

Our values

The Royal Marsden brand is shaped by a distinct set of values that define what we are and how we behave.


We lead the way in cancer research and drive continuous innovation to improve the lives of patients.


We work in an inclusive way, bringing together different expertise, partners and resources to achieve the best possible outcomes.


We strive to be experts in our field, working to deliver outstanding quality in all that we do.


We aspire to create a world class experience where all patients, staff and partners feel valued and respected.

Read the Annual Review and Report in full