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Sutton Scene - Leader of the Council Column

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Published Friday, 20th November 2020

Councillor Ruth Dombey's column from our Sutton Scene newsletter, Friday 20 November.

It was a real honour on Tuesday evening (17 Nov) to attend the (virtual) opening of the Centre for Cancer Drug Discovery in our Borough. It brings together top class scientists from all over the world - biologists, physicists, chemists, biochemists, geneticists, data analysts and many more - to work together under one roof to find new and better drugs for cancer patients, and new ways of beating this terrible disease.

The Centre was opened by the Institute for Cancer Research (ICR), one of the most important cancer research centres in the world, which has been operating in our borough for several years discovering new drugs to beat cancer. The new facility will host the world's first "Darwinian" drug discovery programme with top scientists from all over the world working to tackle cancer's deadly ability to evolve and become more resistant to treatment. The aim is to develop a new generation of drugs that will make a difference to the lives of millions of people all over the world who are living with cancer.

This marks a significant step in our journey towards developing the London Cancer Hub, along with the ICR and the Royal Marsden Hospital. Sutton Council is working closely with both organisations to redevelop the whole site, ensuring they have modern, state-of-the-art facilities for their groundbreaking work and encouraging private enterprises and start-ups to rent space so that they can work closely alongside some of the top cancer researchers in the world. 

It offers huge opportunities for our borough with new jobs, new enterprises, leading scientific research and treatment. And it offers hope that, when the COVID vaccine is confirmed as safe to administer and widely available, we will finally be able to leave this terrible pandemic behind us and think about the future. 

In the meantime, it is more important than ever to keep each other safe, reduce the rates of infection and ensure that our borough continues to be a place where everyone can lead a safe, happy, healthy life and build a hopeful future for our children. Please continue to respect the lockdown in the hope that we can all come out on 2 December and look forward to a brighter future.