After 30 years as a teacher, deputy head and adviser for science and technology for 4-13 year olds, Chris took early retirement on health grounds and now spends time working for Barrett's Wessex, the charity he co-founded. He is also a trustee of the national charity, Barrett's OesophagusCampaign (BOC), and a committee member of Action Against Heartburn (AAH) and the Oesophageal Cancer Westminster Campaign (OCWC).
He is a keen cyclist and has cycled to raise funds in Europe, East Asia and South America.
You may read a summary of Chris's Story here.
In 1999, BOC was founded to maintain the UK Barrett's Oesophagus Registry (UKBOR), with a patient support arm including an on-line forum.
Shortly after he discovered the forum in 2008, Chris responded to a post, “Southampton anyone?” wherein a patient suggested it could be beneficial to meet up with others to discuss their condition. A year later the “Barrett's Support Network – Wessex area” group was formed following an inaugural meeting attended by over 100 people.
After raising funds to purchase a Radio Frequency Ablation machine for Southampton hospital, the group became an independent charity, officially the “Wessex Friends of BOC” but colloquially known as “Barrett's Wessex”, to enable them to concentrate on patients' needs leaving BOC to concentrate on UKBOR, an invaluable resource to researchers.
About the same time, BOC and another charity, Oesophageal Patients Association (OPA) co-founded AAH, now a consortium of all UK charities concerned with raising awareness of oesophageal cancer. AAH campaigned to get the NHS to run a Be Clear On Cancer campaign on oesophago-gastric cancers in 2015 which was boosted by the formation of the parliamentary group, OCWC in 2014.
Acid reflux and its complications is one of the most common complaints in the Western world and there are many charlatans and snake oil salesmen ready to exploit the misery of the gullible and desperate unwary. “Barrett's Esophagus Cure” says the headline while the small print asks $29.95 to let you download the misguided and potentially harmful file.
I am not a doctor but can speak on most of the contents of this book from first hand experience and from the experiences of the hundreds I have met either in person or in on-line forums and facebook pages. - This book should not replace any advice provided by your GP.
This book is freely downloadable from www.DownWithAcid.org.uk by anyone who will find it helpful. It may be distributed freely (as long as it is kept intact and not edited - including cover pages). It cannot be sold for personal gain. Printed copies may be made available at a cost to cover materials and if any profits are made or donations received, they should be forwarded to Barrett's Wessex.
Although some illustrations are the creation of the author, most are believed to be public domain or the creator's consent approved.
Inclusion within this work of illustrations from commercial medical companies does not imply their endorsement of this work nor vice versa.
Apologies are offered if inadvertently copyright has been breached. If you believe this to be so, please inform the author immediately so this may be addressed.
Accuracy and proof-reading
The author would like to thank all the specialist medics, surgeons and nurses for taking the time to check the accuracy of this work and the patients who have checked for legibility.