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Cancer Research UK reaches landmark £100m target towards Francis Crick Institute

Melanie May | 8 August 2016 | News

Cancer Research UK has announced that it has now raised £100m towards the overall £650 million cost of building the Francis Crick Institute: its new medical research facility in London.

The building in King’s Cross St Pancras is nearing completion with scientists due to move in soon. It will house 1,200 leading scientists from a variety of disciplines working together to tackle the biggest health challenges.

The Crick is a collaboration between Cancer Research UK, the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, UCL (University College London), King’s College London and Imperial College, London.


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The charity launched its Create The Change campaign in 2011 and announced plans to raise the figure.

In 2013, it announced it had raised a third of the target, raising the full amount last month, and making this the charity’s most successful high-value fundraising campaign.

The £100 million raised is one of the largest philanthropic charitable campaigns ever in the UK, and was led by a volunteer development board chaired by Charles Manby.

A US$25m donation was also made by HSBC, Cancer Research UK’s largest ever gift.

Most of the £100m was raised through major gifts, although the public was also encouraged to support the appeal through a fully integrated fundraising campaign which asked them to ‘Be Part of the Crick’s DNA’, which included channels such as digital, outdoor, social media, press and PR, face-to-face and direct mail.

In addition, more than £3 million was raised by the charity’s 2015 London Marathon runners, with a quarter of a million pounds raised from an auction of unique DNA-inspired sculptures created by artists and designers including Ai Weiwei and the late Zaha Hadid.

The fundraising campaign has taken Cancer Research UK’s overall commitment to building the Crick to £160 million, with the extra £60m arising from the sale of its existing research laboratories in London.
Sir Harpal Kumar, Cancer Research UK chief executive, said:

“Through collaboration and sharing insights across many different disease areas, the Crick will make a unique global contribution to our understanding of their causes and drivers.

“This cross pollination of knowledge, delivered through state of the art facilities and the best scientific minds, will accelerate and deepen our understanding of how cancer starts, spreads and develops, ultimately improving the lives of patients across the world.”