Support Debbie Fund and help

find a cure for cervical cancer

Mark Phillips

Debbie Fund's Founder, Mark Phillips:

I met Debbie at 2pm on 13th February 1980.  We were together right through University and on 11th August 1984, we married.  Together with our three children, Katy (born 1990), Sarah (born 1993) and Jack (born 1996) we had a blessed life.  The world changed in April 2006 when Debbie was diagnosed with Cervical cancer.  She remained positive throughout her treatment until the disease eventually overwhelmed her on 11th February 2010.  In June 2008 I realised that Debbie was in real trouble and, together with Dr Mary McCormack, Debbie’s consultant, I scoured the world to see if there were any experimental treatments being developed that might save her.  There weren’t.  Towards the end of Debbie’s life we decided that we would try to help UCL do the research that hadn’t been available for Debbie.  That is why Debbie Fund has been set up.  I hope that one day, out of Debbie’s tragedy and the fund set up in her name, a drug will emerge so that women everywhere can have a better outcome.



Helen Jameson

Chair of Debbie Fund Advisory Board, Helen Jameson

Debbie and I met when our eldest daughters started school together in 1995. We became close friends and shared so many lovely times together. Debbie was such a kind, caring and fun person and it was a joy to count her as a friend and share her company. It is a real privilege, with this fantastic team of Debbie’s friends, to build on the amazing work begun by Mark and the research team at the UCL Research Institute to find better treatments for cervical cancer.



Katy Phillips

I am inevitably biased, but my mother was definitely a wonderful person. I will never be able to say that losing her to cervical cancer was anything but awful, because I miss her every day. However, the fact that it has lead to the foundation of Debbie Fund and the fantastic research that the team is carrying out means that it was not meaningless. I am thrilled to have been asked to join the board and I'm looking forward to contributing to the great work that Debbie Fund is doing.


Rowena Eno

Debbie had an amazing ability to make people happy, and I was lucky to have been a close friend for thirty years.  We shared the best of times – our children have grown up together – but also latterly the very worst of times – Debbie’s illness and death. Research paid for by Debbie Fund really could improve the understanding and treatment of cervical cancer. Debbie Fund could make the future happier for other women – and their families – confronting this disease.





Elizabeth Philipps

The fact that I have the same surname and am also a lawyer are purely coincidental; Debbie and I met through our children, Katy and Olivia, who went to Bute House together. Simply chatting at first at mums’ coffee mornings and by the school gate developed into a deeper friendship just as our daughters became best friends. Highlights of our friendship were many shared trips to the theatre and wonderful visits to France.


Geoff Nicholas

I first met Debbie in 1984 when we were articled clerks at Freshfields.  Even after Debbie left Freshfields in 1990 we remained close friends.  It was through staying in my New York flat that Debbie first came across artist Peter Spens.  Debbie was one of the world's special people, and I'm delighted to be helping Debbie Fund.


Dr Mary McCormack

I first met Debbie with Mark her husband on the 20th April 2006 shortly after she was diagnosed with cervical cancer. Throughout her cancer journey there were many setbacks yet despite everything she continued to smile and never complained. Cervical cancer remains a leading cause of death in young women yet  there is surprisingly little laboratory research. A dedicated research facility will we hope lead the way in characterising  the biology of cervical cancer and aid the identification of  new targets for drug development. With your help I  believe we can improve the outlook for  women like Debbie in the future.


Sarah Falk

Debbie and I first met in 1983, both fresh out university and starting legal careers in London. We both retained vivid memories of sitting together in class at the College of Law, followed by six years at Freshfields, which we joined on the same day in 1984. When Debbie left in 1990 I remained, having decided to go back to work after starting a family a year earlier. We remained close friends. Debbie was a very special person for many people and it would be wonderful if we can really make a difference with this fund.


Richard Sutton-Mattocks

As the Chairman of UCL Cancer Institute Research Trust I was honoured to be invited to join the Advisory Board of Debbie Fund. Sadly, I never met Debbie, but she was clearly a very special person to have inspired so many people in the way she has. The time and energy being devoted to this incredibly worthwhile project by Mark and his team, combined with the generosity of the Fund's many supporters and the excellence of the research team at the UCL Cancer Institute, should ensure that, in time, lives will be saved by Debbie Fund. I look forward to contributing towards that goal.


Christina Fitzgerald


Yes, another lawyer and I have known Mark Phillips for many years. Having had my own personal experience of how this dreadful disease can turn your life upside down, I readily accepted the invitation to support this amazing charity.






Shirley Collings

Sadly Shirley's wonderful daughter Helen Morwenna (on the right in the picture) died from cervical cancer in 2008. Read Helen's story here.