Hampton Court and Princess Anne
The Charing Cross International Symposium continued annually, but on the meeting’s fifth year in 1982, the guest of honour was Her Royal Highness, Princess Anne (not yet the Princess Royal). "We dined in Hampton Court Palace," said Greenhalgh. "The Earl and Countess of Westmoreland were also present and Felix Eastcott was a notable speaker and then vice-President of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. Jean Natali, from Paris, showed us his amazing techniques of aortic arch surgery and Dr John Mannick made his first visit to the Charing Cross Symposium of which he became a great supporter for life.
"This was also an occasion for William J von Liebig, the President of Meadox. He enjoyed the occasion greatly. There was support also from Bard, and the then vice-President Guy Guarch."
The 1984 meeting saw the first edition of Vascular Surgical Techniques: the Atlas. This was a major work and a tremendous achievement by Sean Duggan, who was the commissioning editor. Alastair Karmody and Tom Fogarty attended this meeting, with Karmody describing the in situ vein bypass technique, but sadly very shortly afterwards he died of stomach cancer. This meeting’s reception was held in Madame Tussaud’s.
Denton Cooley visited the 1985 Charing Cross International Symposium, while Roger Baird was a regular supporter and always prominent in the meetings.
The European Society for Vascular Surgery
In 1987, Michael DeBakey honoured the meeting with his presence alongside Henner Muller-Wiefel and Professor Paulo Fiorani. The 1987 symposium was a particularly important meeting because it featured the inauguration of the European Society for Vascular Surgery (ESVS). At the meeting, Michael DeBakey called upon every European country to support the ESVS and, with the exception of France, this happened. At the meeting the society was convened. Already, in January 1987, the journal had begun and was published by Grune and Stratton. In no time the ESVS became independent of Charing Cross and the society’s next meeting was planned for September in Rotterdam. Since its early association with the Charing Cross Symposium, the ESVS has gone from strength to strength, but it was from the Charing Cross mailing list that the ESVS was launched and convened.
The 1988 meeting, saw one of the early visits from Frank Veith and Jonathan Towne, as well as Andrew Nicolaides and Bert Eikelboom and newly appointed professor in Lisbon, Fernandez e Fernandez and Wilhelm Sandmann from Dusseldorf. Peter Bell, John Mannick, Bernhard Nachbur and Wilhelm Sandmann, as well as Norman Rich and Michael DeBakey were present once again in 1989.
"1990 was an extraordinary year", reflected Greenhalgh, " in which we were visited by the then Minister of State, Virginia Bottomley, and also by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, who witnessed the Charing Cross 4-layer bandage technique." The meeting switched to the topic "Maintenance of Arterial Reconstruction" in 1991, and "Emergency Vascular Surgery" in 1992, supported by Norman Rich, Carol Ernst, Peter Bell, Jonathan Towne, Jimmy Yao and Professor Norman Brause. In 1989, there was the second edition of the Vascular Surgical Techniques: the Atlas, but in 1994 the Atlas 3rd edition was recast as Vascular and Endovascular Surgical Techniques. Greenhalgh said: "This was the major change introducing endovascular surgery in a major way at this early stage."
In 1995, the symposium concentrated on vascular imaging for surgeons with notable contributions from Eugene Strandness. This was the first appearance of Alun Davies, who joined Greenhalgh’s department following Kevin O’Malley.
The "Trials and Tribulations of Vascular Surgery" in 1996, honed down on the trials and the need for evidence to prove ones position. "This was a very successful meeting and the beginning of the tendency towards evidence-based medicine, which has become a feature of the Charing Cross symposium in recent years," said Greenhalgh.
Vascular and Endovascular
The symposia turned to "Inflammatory and Thrombotic Problems in Vascular Surgery" in 1997 but then dropped into the pattern of vascular and endovascular topics from 1998 onwards beginning in that year with "Indications". The 1998 meeting was the last Charing Cross International Symposium to be held in the old Drew Lecture Theatre at Charing Cross Hospital. It was also the first appearance of Tomislav S×os×a from Zagreb, who is now President of the ESVS. In addition, Professor Lars Norgen and Hans Olav Myhre were prominent guests - "We were bursting at our seams". Over many of the years when the symposium was held in Charing Cross Hospital it was organised by Sue Hamblin, who, according to Greenhalgh, "was absolutely superb but had to leave to have children - she is still missed".
Move to Imperial
The symposium moved to Imperial College’s Great Hall in 1999. "It seemed that the Great Hall would be rather large and we could easily be lost in it," recalled Greenhalgh. "But the meetings, in 1999, on the "Durability of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery" and "Vascular and Endovascular Opportunities" in 2000, were extremely well attended and there was now an increasing contribution from interventional radiologists and endovascular surgeons such as Krassi Ivancev of Malmö and Peter Gaines of Sheffield. "We were delighted to continue to have the support of academic vascular surgeons such as Professor David Bergqvist of Uppsala," said Greenhalgh.
"In the year 2000, the team also organised the Millennium annual meeting for the Vascular Surgical Society of Great Britain and Ireland, which was an additional experience for us all. We were near full capacity for vascular and endovascular techniques in 2001, in which the Atlas had its 4th edition and in 2002, "Evidence for Vascular and Endovascular Reconstruction" pulled an enormous crowd with excellent debates from Tom Fogarty (who was on great form), Professor Janet Powell (a great supporter), Krassi Ivancev, Peter Gaines and others."
Greenhalgh concluded: "These are but some of the exciting activities over the 25 years but the Silver Jubilee will be something special and particularly we look forward to the inaugural Global Endovascular Forum and the enhanced training day for the European Association of Surgeons in Training."
Fact File Charing Cross International Symposium
- 1978 Inaugural meeting
- 1982 Held in Hampton Court and attended by HRH Princess Anne
- 1987 Inauguration of the ESVS
- 1990 Visit of HRH the Prince of Wales
- 1998 Vascular and Endovascular
- 1999 Move to Imperial College
- 2000 Millennium meeting
- 2003 Inaugural Global Endovascular Forum