The event held at Governors’ Hall, St Thomas’ Hospital highlighted the Charity’s achievements over the last 20 years and honoured instrumental figures in accomplishing important milestones, such as changes to food labelling and the establishment of many of the UK’s allergy clinics.
The Campaign was founded in 1994 by a small group of parents led by David Reading OBE. David’s daughter, Sarah,tragically died aged just 17 from anaphylaxis to peanut in October 1993. Her death and others that were also triggered by nuts grabbed the media’s attention and became national news.
David said: “The death of my daughter and so many other young people from something so unassuming was very shocking at the time – and continues to be. Twenty years ago it was clear there was very little awareness of how serious allergy could be. We have made great steps in improving awareness levels amongst the general public, food industry and within government and this event was a chance to take stock of just how far we have come.”
The event brought together over 100 friends, members and supporters of the Anaphylaxis Campaign, including the Campaign’s 102 year old Honorary President, allergy pioneer Dr William Frankland.
There were speeches from Tom Horwood, Chair of Trustees, David Reading OBE, Professor John Warner OBE, Consultant paediatric allergy and chest physician at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Professor of paediatrics at Imperial College London, Dr Andrew Clark, Consultant in Paediatric Allergy, Cambridge University Hospital Trust, whose peanut allergy desensitisation work hit headlines earlier this year as a potential ‘cure’ for the allergy, Lynne Regent, CEO of the Anaphylaxis Campaign, and Dr William Frankland.
Lynne Regent, Anaphylaxis Campaign CEO said: “This event was very important to us in so many ways – it is a chance to remind ourselves of all the achievements we have made in our 20 year history, to say thank you to all those who have supported us throughout and to look to the future.”