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The first Annual Meeting of the ACPGBI was held on 9 March 1990 in the General Hospital in Birmingham with Mr Geoff Oates as the first President. 62 people attended.

ACPGBI’s first President,
Mr Geoff Oates

Ten years later in July 2000, the Annual Meeting with Professor John Nicholls as President was attended by over 900 delegates. The total membership is now almost 1,300. The growth of the association reflects the importance of coloproctology within the field of gastroenterology. Coloproctology is not just about surgeons, it is a specialty comprising physicians, oncologists, pathologists and radiologists with specialist nurse support essential to the management of this group of patients with disorders of the large bowel and anus.

An important feature of the growth of the association has been the development of the regional chapters. Each chapter is represented on Council by a chapter representative elected from within the membership of the chapter. The role of the chapter representative is to arrange local chapter meetings and to represent the chapter within the region at all political levels.

The remaining members of Council are the officers and chairs of the Multidisciplinary Clinical, Education and Training, External Affairs, Research and Audit, Patient Liason Group and Independent Healthcare committees. The Dukes’ Club, the Association of Coloproctology Nurses and the Bowel Disease Research Foundation also have representation on Council together with a representative of the oncology and radiology community.

The association produces its own journal, Colorectal Disease, in close association with Wiley-Blackwell Publishing. The first edition was published in January 1999 and now it is the premier European journal in this field.

The ACPGBI recognises that it has a responsibility to develop the specialty of coloproctology while remaining mindful of the needs of the population that it serves.

Geoff Oates Obituary