top of page


Melanoma skin cancer is becoming more common in the UK, with around 16,700 new cases every year (46 every day). This week I met with charity, Melanoma Focus, to discuss its recent research which shows that there has been a huge increase in the number of people in the UK being diagnosed with melanoma, despite efforts to educate the public on the risks. Over the last decade, melanoma skin cancer incidence rates have increased by around a third (32%) in the UK. Rates in females have increased by more than a quarter (27%), and rates in males have increased by almost two-fifths (38%). It is expected to continue to rise.

The vast majority (86%) of melanoma skin cancer is preventable yet the new data shows that as well as many not wearing sunscreen, a quarter of British people (24%) think that a sunscreen below SPF 30 is the minimum needed for skin protection and 17% said they didn’t know what the minimum was.

The reported use of sunbeds is also a serious concern. It is estimated that in the UK about 100 people die each year from melanomas that are due to sunbed use.

The survey found that 28% of British people have used sunbeds despite 82% of all respondents knowing that they increase the risk of skin cancer. Sunbed use was highest among 26-35 year olds at 40%.

About seven people die from melanoma every day in the UK and more people die from melanoma in the UK than in Australia.

About 9 in 10 melanoma skin cancer cases are preventable and it is vital that people take the warnings about the dangers of excessive sun exposure and the dangers of sunbed use seriously.

Research shows that many people in the UK don’t always appreciate how dangerous sunburn can be. Sun exposure, particularly when young, can cause permanent DNA damage in the skin making it more likely for skin cancers like melanoma to develop.

I was delighted to meet with melanoma survivors, Luke Thomas and Shiona Ramage (pictured).

I’m delighted to support Melanoma Awareness Month and do what I can to help my constituents in to protect themselves and their loved ones from this rising and very serious form of skin cancer.

bottom of page