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  Early History
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by John Hopewell F.R.C.S. (Editor)


This website has been set up to gather the histories of renal units in the United Kingdom and store them together on one site.

Since founding the renal unit at the Royal Free Hospital, London, in 1957. I have known many of the early British workers in this field and am concerned lest their interesting and valuable efforts be forgotten.

I have written an accout of the early history of haemodialysis and transplantation as they developed as complementary treatments for chronic renal failure in the United Kingdom: it is published on the website of the British Transplantation Society, and can be accessed through the “Early History” link button above. In it I have written all that I have been able to collect about the early history of the units which I believe to have been the chief pioneers in this field, and believe that it is a story that has not been told elsewhere. I have judged the units involved in ths story to have been chiefly those at Belfast, Charing Cross London, Edinburgh, Hammersmith, London, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle. and Royal Free London (in alphabetical order). I am aware that it may be incomplete and I have asked for significant corrections or omissions to be sent to the BTS website.

All renal units in the United Kingdom have their stories of scientific advance and the personal achievements of those who have set them up and run them. I hope that this website will give an account of as many as possible of these.

Any amendments to these histories would be appreciated, but even more welcome would be new stories of any unit not included here – where obvious omissios are the units in Glasgow, St.Bartolomew’s and the Westminster Hospitals in London.

I would welcome such contributions to this website, asking for them kindly to be sent to:-