Key Contacts 

Training Programme Director for Clinical Oncology: Dr Jonathan Chambers (Based at Torbay Hospital)

Head of School of Medicine: Kathy Woolson

Deputy Dean for Medicine: Dr Jon Francis

Education programme Manager: Naomi Mallinson


NHS England, South West (Peninsula) supervises all postgraduate medical specialist training in the Devon and Cornwall region for Clinical Oncology.

Information about the Specialty 

Clinical Oncology is the non-surgical management of malignant disease, using both radiotherapy and systemic therapy (chemotherapy, hormone therapy and biological agents).  Specialty Training in Clinical Oncology takes a minimum of five years (ST3-ST7) leading to Fellowship of the Royal College of Radiologists (FRCR) and the award of the Certificate of Completion of Training (CCT).  Further information on Clinical Oncology as a specialty can be found on the Royal College of Radiologists website via the following link:

Clinical Oncology Training in the Peninsula

Peninsula was ranked 1st in England for overall satisfaction for Clinical Oncology in the 2015 and 2016 GMC surveys.  The excellent standard of training is reflected in a high pass rate for the FRCR exams and the presentation of the Oncology Registrars’ Forum Trainer Award to one of our consultants in 2014.

Training is provided at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth, the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital in Exeter and the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro.  A typical 5 year rotation would involve 3 years in Plymouth, 1 year in Exeter and 1 year in Truro although there is some flexibility.  There are currently 10 Clinical Oncology Specialty Registrars in the Peninsula.  During the course of the rotation registrars will receive training in state of the art radiotherapy techniques including intensity modulated radiotherapy, image guidance, gating, 4DCT, stereotactic radiosurgery, high dose rate and low dose rate brachytherapy.  All centres on the rotation have active clinical trials units and trainees will be encouraged to take part in research and quality improvement projects.  There are no Medical Oncology trainees in the Peninsula, so Clinical Oncology trainees gain a broad experience in prescribing systemic therapy for all tumour sites.

During the ST3 year trainees are supported to attend a basic sciences course in preparation for the FRCR part 1 examinations.  Recent trainees have attended the three Biological Basis of Cancer Therapy courses run by the Christie in Manchester, each of which lasts one week.  During the ST5 year trainees attend the South West regional FRCR preparation course which runs over 4 months across Cardiff, Cheltenham, Bristol and Exeter.  In addition to these formal courses trainees attend regional training days once a month across the South West and South Wales and local departmental teaching every week.  Less than full time training and out of programme experience is supported.  Recent Peninsula trainees have completed postgraduate qualifications in clinical education, clinical attachments in London and fellowships in Canada.

If you would like more information on the South West Peninsula Clinical Oncology training programme please contact Dr Jonathan Chambers, Training Programme Director by email (click on his name above). 

Annual Assessment Information

Trainees undertaking Higher Specialist Training are required to have an annual assessment (ARCP). By clicking on the your specialty you will find the requirements for your assessment. The checklists are by no means exhaustive and it is advised that you communicate with your Training Programme Director or Educational Supervisor for more detailed requirement information once you have been scheduled for an assessment Please use these checklists as a guide when preparing for your assessment. Its is your responsibility to check what is expected of you and prepare accordingly. The JRCPTB website is an invaluable source of assessment information.

The Training Hospitals

Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust

Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust

Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Foundation Trust

Torbay & South Devon NHS Foundation Trust

Related Sites

The Association of Cancer Physicians

The Royal College of Radiologists