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A tribute to Professor Jane Wardle

by Sara Hiom | Analysis

23 October 2015

65 comments 65 comments
Jane Wardle
Remembering Jane Wardle

This week, we lost a dear friend, a colleague, a mentor, an intellect and an exceptionally talented researcher – Professor Jane Wardle, one of the UK’s leading health psychologists.

Jane’s contribution to the field of cancer research is hard to overstate. Unlike many of her peers, she came from neither of the traditional cancer research backgrounds – clinical and biological research – but, instead, from the behavioural sciences. And this unique approach led her to assemble one of the largest, most innovative and productive groups in this field worldwide – the CR-UK Health Behaviour Research Centre at UCL.

Since taking over as Director of the Centre more than two decades ago – back then a mere handful of researchers –  Jane had a sustained record of pioneering research that has transformed our current understanding of cancer prevention, screening, early diagnosis and survivorship. Over this time, she mentored more than 40 PhD students, and produced more than 600 peer-reviewed publications.

But mere numbers do not do justice to the impact her research has had.

To take just a few of many prominent examples from throughout her career, her work in collaboration with Professor Wendy Atkin on the UK Flexible Sigmoidoscopy Trial led to its incorporation into the NHS bowel screening programme, while she also helped pave the way for the introduction of the HPV vaccine, exploring its acceptability among parents.

Her pioneering work on obesity and weight control has led to the development of evidence-based methods, such as the Ten Top Tips, to support people in improving their health behaviours to reduce cancer risk.

In the field of early diagnosis, Jane’s achievements are perhaps best exemplified by the Cancer Awareness Measure, now used to measure the impact of a wide array of initiatives aimed at improving awareness of cancer risk factors and symptoms and adapted for use around the world; and in pioneering studies understanding the role of fear and fatalism as people seek help for cancer symptoms – with particular focus on social-economic inequalities.

Undoubtedly, Jane’s contribution to the whole NAEDI movement, and our thinking about cancer diagnosis, has been pivotal.

And more recently, in the field of survivorship, Jane set in motion ongoing work with potential to change ‘usual care’ for cancer survivors, understanding their health behaviours and needs. She was an active, expert member of the NCRI’s lifestyle and behaviour change clinical study group – an essential part of the UK’s cancer research infrastructure. And Jane was one of only a handful of researchers to have been elected to both the British Academy and the Academy of Medical Sciences.

But to many of us, Jane was more than a brilliant researcher, she was so much more: an incredible friend, mentor, mother, grandmother and wife. She had so much time for people and was fun, insightful, humble, gentle, caring – and so very wise. She was the person many of us would choose to share their problems, frustrations and innermost secrets with, simply because she had an uncanny knack of getting straight to the nub of the issue in the most non-judgemental way, and articulately providing any number of elegant solutions, when none had previously seemed possible.

Jane also had quite a wicked sense of humour when she chose to reveal it. She shared so much of herself and all that were privileged to know her well, benefitted hugely from her generosity. She also possessed an immense capacity for new ideas and for sheer hard work – a powerhouse in a tiny frame, with such a distinctive and musical ‘hello’.

And Jane absolutely adored her family, was inseparable from her beloved Andrew and always spoke so tenderly and proudly of her children and, more recently, about her grandchildren too. When Dorsey arrived, in her own inimitable style, Jane was quite clear that she was unimpressed by fancy ‘grandmother-type names’ and determined she would be called Jane, thank you very much.

After being diagnosed with chronic leukaemia, Jane wrote eloquently about the impact it had on both her understanding of her work, and family life – the professional and personal. Her article, published in 2002, concludes:

“I hope that we are in a new era where patients and doctors will work together to understand and treat disease, and people with a foot in both camps might be able to make a special contribution.”

Jane’s contribution to our lives, both professionally and personally, was more than special. She is irreplaceable, and as you can see in the comments below, from the scores of heartfelt tributes that have poured in since the news broke, she will be missed tremendously by so many.

Our thoughts and sincerest sympathies are with Andrew, Lucy, Matt and all Jane’s extended family.

Sara Hiom, Director of Early Diagnosis and Cancer Intelligence


    Comments

  • Margo Saunders
    17 January 2016

    I am devastated to learn of the death of Jane Wardle. As a health researcher in Australia with interests in health literacy, men’s health, and food & health, I quickly learned that any publication with Jane’s name on it was worth an immediate read. I have valued her thoughtful contributions and have often thought how wonderful it would be if we had a few more Jane Wardles. She will be greatly missed.

  • Dr Karen Gough
    30 December 2015

    I am so sorry to learn of Jane’s passing through the BPS Psychologist journal. Jane supervised my D Clin Psy dissertation in 1997-98. She was incredibly knowledgable, and extremely patient as a supervisor. Her contribution to Health Psychology is incalculable.

  • Lesley Campbell
    29 December 2015

    I was shocked to hear of Jane’s passing. Although I haven’t seen her for many a year we shared a lot of fun together during our training at the Institute of Psychiatry. At that time my name was Lesley Holloway. We shared a sense of irreverence and Jane encouraged to do my thesis on non-compliance with therapeutic instructions. It was very clear then that she had a brain the size of a planet and a heart to match. Over the years I have followed her career from my much more lowly positions. I have been amazed at the span of her work and her massive contribution,.

  • Dorina Cadar, UCL
    8 November 2015

    It is extremely sad to learn about the passing of Professor Jane Wardle.
    In 2012, when UCL was reorganising the space for PhD students and researchers, she offered me a desk within her research group to complete writing my thesis on lifestyle behaviours and cognitive decline. That was the time, when I learned about the world of Jane Wardle Research group.
    Jane was known for sharing with her students her enthusiasm, motivation and wisdom. She not only brought her love to her group, she also imparted on her students one of the highest standards of academic research. Most of her students (also my colleagues and friends) are now pursuing successful academic careers.
    Jane was a first class mentor and a brilliant researcher. She was a true force and a pioneer in health psychology bringing different perspectives of public health, health behaviours and prediction risks into a combined approach. To me, she was an outstanding academic and a role model.
    Her legacy to the field could be cemented by creating a “Jane Wardle Fellowship” or “Jane Wardle Prize”.

  • Romano Endrighi - NIH Bethesda US
    5 November 2015

    I was truly saddened of learning of Jane’s passing. I knew Jane and most of the wonderful and talented researchers at the HBRC during my time at UCL. She inspired so many people and run the largest and most prolific group of health psychology researchers in Europe. My thoughts are with Andrew and their family in this difficult and trying time.

  • Marta Jackowska Roehampton University
    5 November 2015

    Professor Jane Wardle’s death has broken so many hearts. There are no words that can possibly describe how truly remarkable she was. She transformed lives on a huge scale starting from her pioneering health behaviour research (among other topics) to the lives of those who were privileged to work or study with her. Jane’s life was way, way too short but she managed to make the world we live in a better place. Jane gave me my first ever research job because she believed in me before I did. Thank you Jane. Today at her funeral we found out that Jane loved fireworks, it will be impossible for me now not to think of her each time I see them.

  • Lizzy Lubczanski (nee Leigh), Swiss Re
    5 November 2015

    I very recently came across an old email that made me realise that I owe Jane for even more than I realised. She encouraged Andrew to give me a job even though I wasn’t selected for the one I’d applied for. I then spent 4 years in the Psycholobiology group and Andrew got me through the PhD that’s enabled me to be where I am today. I was privileged to attend Jane’s very sad but very beautiful funeral today; she really was one in a million, and will be missed widely and deeply. My heart goes out to Andrew, her children and all who knew her.

  • Claire Mimnagh
    30 October 2015

    It came as a huge shock to find out about Jane. How can someone who I remember as being so full of life, no longer be here? I worked at UCL for three years as course administrator for the MSc Health Psychology. My memories of Jane are of someone who was profoundly impressive, warm and very funny.

    I’m incredibly grateful to both Jane and Andrew for the opportunities they gave me to get involved in research and for sparking my love of science and Health Psychology. It was quite literally, life changing. My thoughts are with Andrew and their family and everyone in the HBRC.

    Claire Mimnagh, Research Assistant and Consultation Skills tutor, Manchester Medical School.

  • Astrid Mayer
    30 October 2015

    Very sorry to hear the sad news. I have worked with Jane and her group on a number of projects over the years. She has been truly inspirational.

  • Julietta Patnick. Formerly Director NHS Cancer Screening Programmes
    28 October 2015

    Like everyone I have been horribly shocked by this terrible news. She is a terrible loss to us all. I loved listening to Jane. Whenever she was round the table, there would always be a point in the discussion where she just made you think and forget your own agenda. As a lecturer, she would present a new slant on old data, or explain a new concept in a way which made it clear and understandable. She always got my brain going and I really valued her interest in my area of work. This early loss seem so unjust

  • Sophie Pilgrim
    28 October 2015

    I’m so sorry to hear this – Jane was also a wonderful help for CRUK fundraising – no least helping us to secure a £3million donation from a Foundation towards our behavioural research.

  • Jenny Fidler
    27 October 2015

    I worked in the HBRC for nearly ten years, leaving in 2011. In my first week in post, a colleague gave me Jane’s 2002 guardian article, then very recently written. It was a very intimate insight into Jane’s life for such a new starter and at the time quite a challenge to read. However, over time the contents of the article, although remaining in my desk drawer, left my conscious memory as Jane powered on in her tiny frame running the unit with determination, clarity and utter brilliance. I spent many late nights and early mornings in the unit and Jane would pad around in her bare feet (silent, so no one knew she was about to dance in with that musical hello and a swish of a floaty skirt) for a chat before getting down to the important stuff of how something could be done so much better! Yes there were periods of illness, when staff would go for meetings with Jane at home, but to our awareness these were few and far between and rarely impacted upon her ability to carry on working. That this day would come therefore has come as a great shock to me because it never seemed to be an option that Jane wouldn’t be there at the helm and her death is an unquantifiable loss to healthy psychology and cancer research, not to mention to her family, friends and colleagues. My thoughts go out to Andrew and her family, and to the current HBRC team who must be floundering and quite daunted by the sad task ahead as they continue her work. I am so grateful to her for giving me that first opportunity and teaching me so much, for all the advice and support over those years, for challenging track changes documents, for fabulous conference experiences together, for being a shoulder to cry on, for her wonderful witty sense of humour and the reassurance that I’m not the only one who sometimes needs a little bite of chocolate to get going in the morning. Thank you Jane.

  • Clare Llewellyn
    26 October 2015

    I cannot begin to describe what Jane meant to me. I don’t simply owe her my career – she raised me as a scientist. I will never forget the life-changing moment when I first met her. She gave a lecture on the Psychology of Cancer when I was doing my MSc in Health Psychology at UCL in 2006. Her charisma, unbridled passion, and razor-sharp intellect had me hooked. I fell in love with science; and realized that I wanted to work with Jane in any capacity for as long as I could.

    What set her apart from other brilliant scientists and mentors was not just her unwavering loyalty to every member of her group, but her total commitment to any research being undertaken; however small or large. The level of attention she offered in each meeting was almost unnerving; at that moment you felt that you were the only person in the world, and that there was nothing more important than your current question, concern or idea. She combined all of this with a wicked sense of humour, warmth, openness, humility, and an incredible ability to lighten any conversation. I will miss her terribly, but will always be grateful for the privilege of having had her for nine years as both my mentor and my friend.

    Clare Llewellyn, Lecturer at the Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL

  • Andrea Smith, PhD Student, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL
    26 October 2015

    I already miss Jane. It was an immense privilege to have known her and to have had her as my PhD supervisor. There was something wonderfully unique about her in the way that, even though she was a world-class scientist, she remained so down to earth and human in her contacts. Whenever I nervously requested a meeting she would respond nearly immediately and try to arrange a mutually convenient time and place; and this is merely a hint of how generous she was with her commitment to guiding her students through their projects. After every conversation with Jane, I would frantically try to scribble down all the points we had discussed, acutely aware that her insights were too valuable to forget.

    Jane’s determination, wit and ability to make sense of people’s innermost feelings were what made her an amazing inspiration to anybody who knew her. I will always treasure my memories of her and will do my best to harness her enthusiasm and what she taught me to complete our current projects and to inspire any future research.

  • Jinata Subba
    26 October 2015

    I met Jane a year ago and briefly worked for her as a research administrator earlier this year before her treatment began. She was nothing short of spectacular in making me feel welcome and comfortable. She was a power house and it was very obvious what an inspiration she was to so many but the greatest thing about her was that, regardless of hectic schedule, she always had time for everyone. She listened to me talk – teary eyed – about the earthquake back home and this was on day one. Even the most mundane conversations with her were concluded with a little laughter and her emails were always decorated with a kiss because that’s just the kind of lovely she was. I’m so happy to have had the opportunity to surround myself with her positivity (however brief) and will always be thankful for the light she shared.

    Jinata Subba
    PA to Prof Andrew Steptoe
    Research Administrator – Psychobiology Group and HBRC

  • Eleonora d'Orsi
    26 October 2015

    We had not heard these sad news, we are very sorry for this terrible loss. It was an honor and a joy to have met Prof Jane Wardle and worked with her, She was very supportive of my husband Andre Xavier and I. She will be missed. With love, Eleonora d’Orsi

  • Nancy Keating
    26 October 2015

    As a researcher and physician in the US, I was lucky enough to collaborate with Jane Wardle on a paper. We were connected via a colleague who engaged Jane because of her depth of understanding about fatalism. Despite only a relatively brief collaboration, it was quite clear to me that Jane was the epitome of a successful and generous researcher. She had an immense depth of knowledge that she willingly shared. She could dig up a relevant citation in minutes. She was generous with her time and incredibly responsive and prompt despite her demanding schedule. It was an absolute pleasure working with her, and I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity.

    Nancy Keating, MD, MPH
    Professor of Health Care Policy and Medicine

  • Terry Dovey (Eating behaviour change - Brunel University)
    26 October 2015

    Eating behaviour and health psychology lost one of our pioneers and leaders. A woman who was irrepressible and will be irreplaceable. I had the pleasure of looking after once at a conference as a PhD student. She was get nice and easy to talk to. Always had time to go that extra mile to help you understand and definitely did it in very few words. 10 years later, she will be one person that will inspire us for generations to come. She has definately inspired me. A silent hero of UK and global research that has had a huge impact on society.

  • Sammy Quaife, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL
    25 October 2015

    It is difficult to articulately capture what Jane meant to me; not just a supervisor, she became a very important part of my life, and my inspiration. She was quite simply wonderful. Her intellectual brilliance, infinite wisdom, sharp wit and warmth of character meant she was a complete joy to spend time with. She pushed and nurtured my academic thinking and growth, but was also someone I could confide in about absolutely anything. I will always treasure her advice, mentorship and kindness, and I miss her terribly.

  • Nathalie Kliemann, PhD student, HBRC, UCL
    25 October 2015

    I had the privilege of being Jane’s PhD student for two years. She was a remarkable researcher and a wonderful and very supportive person. She changed my life and career accepting me as her student, and I will be forever grateful for that. She will always be a source of inspiration for me and will be hugely missed!!

  • Emily Power
    24 October 2015

    It’s true, Jane really did have a musical ‘hello’. I can hear it so clearly when I think of her. She was also the only senior figure I’ve come across who ended her staff and student emails with a kiss, a lovely touch that just underlined the tremendous warmth of her personality. Jane was brilliant: a fantastic thinker with relentless energy and enthusiasm for research, a great champion of behavioural science and a wonderful mentor – she was an incredibly busy lady but always had time for a chat. I owe her so much. She gave me the opportunity to complete a PhD at the HBRC, where I spent four very happy years, and then guided me towards a job at CRUK, which I’m still enjoying five years on. I feel incredibly lucky to have worked with Jane so closely for the past 10 years and will really miss her advice and guidance. x

  • Dr Gianluca Baio, Reader in Statistics & Health Economics, Statistical Science, UCL
    24 October 2015

    Terribly sad news. I count myself lucky to have met and (although very briefly) worked with Jane. Her outstanding work will make her impossible to forget. But more than that, I will remember her for the lovely person she was.

  • Peter Fonagy, Head Clinical Educational & Health Psych, UCL
    24 October 2015

    Jane was a tremendous intellect, one of the smartest academics around with wonderful imagination. She had unimaginable breadth and understood everything. She was an extraordinary colleague, sharp, witty, sometimes even mildly cutting, but someone you knew would be always there for you when you needed her. I knew Jane as a junior lecturer at the IoP almost 40 years ago and feel proud to have been part of the group who tried and ultimately succeeded to attract her to UCL. More than that, I feel proud and very grateful to have known this incredible person: intellectually unrivalled and as a character an extraordinary yet totally unpretentious figure. Above all I will miss a wise, funny, caring and inspiring old friend.

  • Ruth Evans, Post Doc Fellow, Birkbeck College
    23 October 2015

    In 2003 Jane offered me the chance to join the HBU to complete my PhD. It took a little longer than planned due to the arrival of my children but Jane’s help, guidance and the loyalty that she inspired got me to my viva in 2011. Working with Jane changed my view of myself personally and professionally through her honesty and generosity. I shall be forever thankful for knowing Jane, she will be sorely missed

  • Andrew Renehan
    23 October 2015

    Shocking and very sad news. I have known Jane for almost ten years, but only started to collaborate in the last 18 months. She had a great gift to take the strength of another’s option and marry it with her wisdom to bring clarify to a research question. It was only 4 weeks ago that Jane was emailing me pursuing the completion of some of our work, keen to bring research to a practical conclusion, ultimately to benefit others. She will be hugely missed in the world of cancer prevention.
    Professor Andrew Renehan, University of Manchester

  • Susie Meisel- former HBRC member, now IoPPN trainee in Clinical Psychology
    23 October 2015

    Jane was so much more to me than a PhD supervisor.She had a profound influence on me an ‘made’ me as a researcher, and in many ways, shaped me profoundly as a person.I will be forever grateful for that. She was incredibly honest and to the point but always with a sense of humour and a lot of compassion. She always had time for me, and my thoughts, no matter what else was going on. I can’t even begin to imagine how busy she was. But it didn’t matter. She taught me to walk my own path, stand on my own two feet, and, perhaps, most importantly, to think for myself. She will always be with me in everything I do. Susie

  • Abi Fisher
    23 October 2015

    I started working with Jane in early 2009. As a new postdoc, feeling slightly unsure of what to do with my life, I took a year-long position with her in the HBRC, then never left. I could write another thesis and hardly begin to capture the essence of Jane. She was wonderful; a truly inspirational scientist, warm, witty, ever-surprising, and as a mentor, simply as good as it gets. No question was ever too trivial, no idea not worth at least exploring. I doubt there are many who have had such a significant positive impact, both on science and personally. I can’t convey how important Jane was to me. She defined the trajectory of my career, introduced me to some of my closest friends, constantly inspired enthusiasm for our work, and so, so much more. We lost someone irreplaceable this week, but I am profoundly grateful to have known her. Abi Fisher, UCL

  • Ali Fildes
    23 October 2015

    I first met Jane when she interviewed me for an administrative support role working on her (then) newly established twin cohort. She was inspirational from the outset and despite her unimaginably busy schedule she made time to chat to me about my thoughts and ideas. Jane repeatedly encouraged me to undertake a PhD and in doing so changed the course of my life and career. I will feel eternally grateful to have had her as my PhD supervisor and mentor. If possible, my admiration for Jane grew even further over the past few months as I watched her deal with the challenges of her illness and treatment. Her positivity, drive and continued enthusiasm for research were at times superhuman. No matter how unwell she felt, she still managed to ask after my mum who was herself diagnosed with leukaemia last year. I will miss our chats forever.
    – Ali Fildes, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL.

  • Nora Pashayan, Senior Clinical Lecturer, UCL
    23 October 2015

    I used to look up to Jane and open up for advice. She was approachable and insightful mentor. It tells a lot about Jane how she was keeping mentoring and looking after her staff during her illness while being at home. She will be terribly missed.

  • Becca Beeken, HBRC, UCL
    23 October 2015

    It is hard to put into words what Jane meant to me. A few sentences really cannot do her justice. She was a wonderful mentor- both inspiring and supportive. She would always make time for you, whether it was to talk about your latest idea, paper, or personal crisis. She would challenge you, make you laugh, and offer a perspective that nobody else could. My partner recently said to me that one of the first things he discovered about me was my admiration and love for Jane, my mum described her as ‘my 2nd mum’. It is a true testament to her that she inspired such devotion from so many. She was brilliant and we will always miss her.

  • Anna Roberts
    23 October 2015

    I have just started my PhD in the HBRC and have been overwhelmed by the response to Jane’s passing among her colleagues and students. If I did not know this before, my first few weeks here and reading the many touching tributes and comments have confirmed what a truly remarkable woman she must have been and I feel very unfortunate that I didn’t have the opportunity to meet her. I feel incredibly privileged that I am doing my PhD at the HBRC and am certainly inspired by her legacy to give it my all! My thoughts are with Andrew and the rest of Jane’s family, friends and colleagues.
    – Anna Roberts, PhD student, HBRC.

  • Katriina Whitaker
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the sort of person who was so intelligent, loving and interesting that you never wanted meetings with her to end. She was the greatest mentor anyone could wish for- clever (well beyond clever), funny, and accessible. I am so grateful for every minute I spent in Jane’s company, and will miss her enormously. Katriina Whitaker, University of Surrey.

  • Georgia Black
    23 October 2015

    Jane is part of my extended family, and I grew up being told “you could be like Jane one day” when I became interested in psychology in my teens. I didn’t know what ‘being like Jane’ meant because she seemed so normal. I did indeed pursue a career in psychology and so it transpired that I got a job at UCL after my PhD, a floor above Jane and along from Andrew. I was pleased to see friendly faces in the corridors & my grandmother’s paintings on her office walls. It transpired that my work overlapped with her department’s and I witnessed Professor Jane for the first time – the calm thinker, the polite critic and the inspirational teacher. I wish I’d had many more opportunities, but like others who have commented, she knew exactly who to introduce me to. I now have lots of friends at the HBRC and I’m sure we will be doing research together in Jane’s memory for years to come.
    – Georgia Black, Department of Applied Health Research, UCL

  • Stephen Duffy
    23 October 2015

    Jane was deputy director of the Policy Research Unit and was a tower of strength in our dealings with the Department of Health. I also recall her at meetings for projects which included big, rival personalities. Jane always helped make these meetings productive because both sides liked, trusted and respected her. She was a great person, a marvellous friend and colleague. I don’t want to sound selfish, but I have no idea what we are going to do without her.

  • Lindsay Kobayashi, HBRC
    23 October 2015

    Jane was my PhD supervisor, the person who guided my academic growth. I feel privileged to be a part of her legacy, which really is remarkable in scope and depth. Although I miss her terribly and regret not having the chance to continue working with her, we at the HBRC will all carry her influence forward in our future research and that is a beautiful thing.

  • David Forman
    23 October 2015

    In Jane’s moving and brave Observer article from 2002 about her initial diagnosis, talking about cancer patients and their doctors, she said “people with a foot in both camps might be able to make a special contribution”. This was no more evident than in her own very many special contributions.
    -Dr David Forman, Senior Visiting Scientist, International Agency for Research on Cancer

  • Kat Arney
    23 October 2015

    Since starting as a volunteer at the HBRC through to my postdoctoral work, Jane has championed me and steered my career in directions I did not realise were available. She did this with a kindness, wit and intellect that only those who knew her can appreciate. I will never tire of exchanging stories about Jane with those around me, and if the last few days have taught us anything it is that there are plenty more stories to tell.
    A famous saying around the HBRC, and one that was echoed almost daily within the unit, is that ‘you never leave a job at the HBRC, you simply take on new ones’. I only hope this is true as Jane has created and fostered a group of people that are a credit to her excellence as a scientist, mentor and friend. It is these people who will be her legacy. I miss her dearly already.
    – Sam Smith, Cancer Research UK Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Cancer Prevention, Queen Mary University of London

  • Kat Arney
    23 October 2015

    I first got to know Jane at the Institute of Psychiatry back in the 1980s when she was a clinical psychologist doing work on blood phobia and I had just started to work in the field of smoking cessation. It was evident then that she was a star in the making and since then she has done as much or more than anyone in the world to shape the field of behavioural medicine. I personally owe her a huge debt of gratitude for bringing me to UCL to work in her team and providing such a wonderful, stimulating, collegiate environment – and for being a brilliant, stimulating colleague and friend who was always fun to be with.
    – Professor Robert West, Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Peter Johnson
    23 October 2015

    Jane was a marvellous person working in a special field of science. She brought great wisdom and understanding of human behaviour to the problem of how to help people adjust their lifestyle to reduce their risk of cancer, and played a big role in helping us think about how to train the next generation of researchers as well. We will miss her in many ways.
    – Professor Peter Johnson, Chief Clinician, Cancer Research UK

  • Sarah Jackson
    23 October 2015

    I had the privilege of working with Jane for five years, first as a PhD student and then as a post-doctoral researcher. As well as being an inspirational academic, her kind-hearted and generous nature made Jane the most wonderful supervisor I could ever hope to work with. I hope to continue to produce work she would be proud of throughout the rest of my career. She will be sorely missed by everyone who knew her.
    – Sarah Jackson, UCL

  • Steve Halligan
    23 October 2015

    Jane showed me, a dyed-in-the-wool quantitative researcher, the very real benefits of well-performed qualitative research. Via her open attitude to collaboration, Jane was pivotal in convincing me and my group to perform psychological research in our field (radiology). She was also fundamental to supporting collaborations between my group and researchers who worked for her, collaborations that have gathered much momentum over the years thanks to her facilitatory attitude. Jane will be sorely missed.
    – Steve Halligan, Professor of Radiology, UCL

  • Una Macleod
    23 October 2015

    It is one of the great privileges and pleasures of my professional life that Jane Wardle considered me a peer. But I didn’t think of her as a peer. I considered her a role model, an academic of amazing ability and clarity of thought, a perceptive generous individual with an outstanding grasp of her field. Almost every conversation I had with her was a mixture of trying to work out the current or next research challenge interspersed with her inimitable take on life so it was also fun. I always felt better for talking to her even when she was ill. I recall probably the last conference we were both at – NAEDI 2015 – when we were paired to examine posters during the wine reception. Neither of us had examined posters while drinking red wine plus balancing marking sheets before. We had great fun with it; we hoped the best poster got the prize. I will miss her. As a dependable colleague, as a wise counsellor, as a star in the early cancer diagnosis firmament and as a fair decent person. It was a joy to know her.
    – Una McCleod, Hull York Medical School

  • Yoryos Lyratzopoulos
    23 October 2015

    Jane’s research has completely changed the way we understand cancer diagnosis: from a purely medical problem for doctors and hospitals to a broader societal responsibility and imperative. Her impact on cancer prevention and control policies is immense, and will resonate strongly in global initiatives to stem the tide of rising cancer mortality for many years to come.
    – Yoryos Lyratzopoulos, CRUK Clinician Scientist Fellow & Reader in Cancer Epidemiology, HBRC, UCL

  • Iain Foulkes
    23 October 2015

    Jane was such a great scientist who made an immense contribution to her field and to CRUK.
    We’ll greatly miss her input and her passion – a sad day.
    – Iain Foulkes, Executive Director Strategy & Research Funding, Cancer Research UK

  • Bill Klein
    23 October 2015

    Jane Wardle was the perfect combination one would want in a colleague – a brilliant scientist, exceptional leader and mentor, and kind soul. Few behavioral scientists have had the wide-ranging impact Jane had throughout her career on science, policy, and public health – all the while doing so with humility and rigor. Her intelligence, warmth, and energy will be missed greatly by her peers, but her work ethic and passion will live on in her trainees and colleagues as they continue to pursue the critical work of improving public health.
    – Bill Klein, NIH, US

  • Christian von Wagner
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the greatest mentor I have ever had and a wonderful friend. During the time I knew her, she completely changed my life and helped me develop as an academic and as a person in ways I could not have imagined. Among all the sadness over the last few days, one of the surprises and a source of comfort has been to find out that so many people I have spoken to had the same experience. I will be eternally grateful and miss her terribly.
    – Dr Christian von Wagner, Senior Lecturer in Behavioural Research in Early Diagnosis of Cancer, Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Kate Brain
    23 October 2015

    Jane was a brilliant, generous and inspiring woman. She was a pioneer in understanding the role of health psychology in cancer prevention, who paved the way for researchers working in this field. Jane shared her extensive knowledge and expertise liberally. She gave a helping hand to many researchers, and I am personally thankful to her for opportunities to contribute to the field. She also had an amazing gift for communicating complex scientific concepts in simple, elegant and human terms. Jane was a wonderful role model for women in science and her gift will be felt for years to come. My thoughts are with Jane’s family, friends and colleagues.
    – Kate Brain, University of Cardiff

  • Rosalind Raine
    23 October 2015

    Remembering Jane: her measured judgement, her sensitive approach to multidisciplinary team working, her tireless commitment to her craft. We will miss her.
    – Professor Rosalind Raine, UCL

  • Greg Rubin
    23 October 2015

    She was a wonderful colleague, even though I knew her only for comparatively few years. A deep understanding of her field and razor sharp intellect and at the same time a warm and generous person.
    – Greg Rubin, University of Durham

  • Harpal Kumar
    23 October 2015

    Jane was someone who taught me a great deal in a wonderfully unassuming way. She was a powerful advocate for behavioural science and used it to great effect to enlighten us all about issues in prevention and late diagnosis. She was also a wonderful ambassador for Cancer Research UK. We will miss her greatly.
    – Harpal S. Kumar, Chief Executive, Cancer Research UK.

  • Roganie Govender
    23 October 2015

    I was really nervous the first time I met Jane on the 19 March 2013. She knew nothing about me except that I was a speech and language therapist working in cancer and I was looking for a research supervisor to support me in a grant application with 6 weeks to go to the deadline! She patiently listened to my project pitch (at that stage fairly scantily developed, I thought) and instantly got what I was trying to do in the project! Her manner put me at immediate ease. I was able to answer the questions she had that helped clarify my own thinking about my project. At the end of our meeting, Jane agreed to support me in the grant application process. I recall walking out of her office with a feeling of confidence and renewed inspiration. I decided that I was going to make every effort to submit the grant application despite the tight deadline. I did, and I was successful in obtaining the grant – in no small part to that initial hour-long interaction I had with Jane. I joined the HBRC in March 2014, with Jane as my co-primary supervisor.
    I recently completed my MPhil/PhD upgrade at the HBRC. Jane was having chemo but she somehow remembered the day of my upgrade and sent me her good wishes, apologizing for not being there to support me in person! So in addition to her academic tutelage, this is how I will remember her on a personal level – for the great kindness she showed me when I was no more than a stranger who knocked on her office door, her caring manner and her ability to inspire. In talking to others I know she has done the same for them too. Her academic legacy is so much more than her own prolific research, but will continue in the work of the many students and colleagues she has supported and inspired.
    – Roganie Govender

  • Stephen Halloran
    23 October 2015

    Very sad news, she is a lady for whom I very swiftly developed respect, she had a comprehensive knowledge of her subject, provided a wise insight into behavioural aspects of screening and showed a welcome and pragmatic common sense approach to cancer screening. I will miss Jane and I’m sure she will be greatly missed by my colleagues in the NHS screening programme.
    – Prof Stephen P. Halloran, University of Sussex

  • Jo Waller
    23 October 2015

    I feel incredibly privileged to have worked with Jane for 17 years. She was not only brilliantly clever, but kind, supportive, generous with her time, and always thoughtful about helping her students and colleagues progress in their careers. She had a fantastic sense of humour and meetings with her were full of laughter. I will desperately miss her ideas, wisdom, advice and friendship.
    – Jo Waller, HBRC

  • Gemma Vart
    23 October 2015

    I remember the first meeting I had with Jane; I was quaking in my boots keenly wanting to impress my highly esteemed colleague. What struck me the most was her warmth of spirit, her passion for cancer screening, and her unfathomable work ethic. I went on to learn so much from Jane and for this, together with the opportunities she gave me, I will always be incredibly grateful.
    – Dr Gemma Vart, University of Roehampton

  • Martin Jarvis
    23 October 2015

    I first met Jane in 1976, when I enrolled on the clinical psychology course at the Maudsley, and Jane was a new 25-year old lecturer, having just herself completed the course. She was then, as now, an inspiring mentor. We became good friends and collaborated on some research. In the 1980s, as I worked with Michael Russell on tobacco, my interests shifted from the individual to focus more on the broader population to achieve significant behaviour change. Jane was still working primarily as a clinical psychologist with research interests in dietary restraint and binge eating. If I had an influence on her subsequent career, it was to persuade her of the greater attractions of the population over the individual, and I was instrumental in recruiting her to join ICRF. We were close colleagues and friends from then on.
    The Health Behaviour Unit was Walter Bodmer’s initiative, set up in 1988 to give ICRF, which was then almost entirely focused on molecular biology with a leavening of epidemiology, a presence in behavioural science approaches to cancer prevention. Mike Russell’s tobacco group formed the initial nucleus of the new unit. Jane joined in 1991 to expand research into areas such as screening and food choice. Many in ICRF were unsure that this kind of thing was real science. The HBU was only half accepted and was hanging on by its fingertips. The unit’s quinquennial review in 2000 marked a turning point. We had heard rumours in advance that ICRF, beset by budgetary constraints, was minded to close things down. At the site visit, Jane, who was by then Director of the unit, dazzled the review panel, which included two ICRF scientists later to win Nobels, with the quality of her work and vision, and the HBU got outstanding ratings which ensured funding. That marked the beginning of the acceptance of behavioural cancer prevention into the ICRF mainstream.
    – Professor Martin Jarvis, Emeritus Professor of Health Psychology UCL, Former Principal Scientist, ICRF

  • Katie Robb
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the best teacher I ever had. She was so kind and clever and also very funny. Her enthusiasm for research was infectious and she created a brilliant environment at the HBRC. When I’m working I’m always thinking, ‘how would Jane do this?’ and ‘what would Jane have said about that?’ and to think that I won’t be able to ask her again is very hard. I feel privileged to have known her.
    – Dr Katie Robb, University of Glasgow Leadership Fellow, Institute of Health & Wellbeing

  • Kelly Winstanley
    23 October 2015

    Jane was, without a doubt, the most dedicated and intelligent woman I have ever met. A true inspiration, who always made time to talk. I have learnt so much from working with Jane, and feel privileged to have been able to call her my mentor and my friend. I will miss talking to her, laughing with her and hearing her unique perspective on things. I have learnt so much from Jane, and feel blessed to have known her. She will never be forgotten, and has left a lasting impression on the lives of so many people. I consider myself very lucky to be one of them. Rest in peace, Dearest Jane.
    – Kelly Winstanley, UCL

  • Annie Anderson
    23 October 2015

    For twenty years I have had the priveledge of knowing Jane as a collaborator, committee member, reviewer, guide and mentor – a true light in an often hazy academic world. Her academic legacy is large, outstanding and leading in many areas and a great many of us have and will continue to benefit from her wisdom. Jane as a person was energetic, enthusiastic and fun. Allways warm and welcoming, wise and honest and we will miss her and remember her with love
    – Professor Annie S Anderson, Centre for Public Health Nutrition Research, University of Dundee

  • Alice Forster
    23 October 2015

    Jane helped all of us grow and develop independence as researchers. She was always so incredibly generous with her time. I’m really going to miss her.
    – Alice Forster, PhD, Senior Research Associate, Cancer Research UK-BUPA Cancer Prevention Post-doctoral Fellow, CRUK Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Wendy Atkin
    23 October 2015

    It is hard to convey briefly my love and admiration for Jane, a dear friend and close colleague, to whom I owe so much. I enjoyed her astounding intellect, creativity, kindness, honesty, integrity, empathy, wit and joie de vivre as did her family, friends, colleagues, students, and the cancer prevention community. Jane was a huge part of my life.
    – Professor Wendy Atkin, Cancer Screening and Prevention Group, Imperial College London

  • Noel Brewer
    23 October 2015

    This is terribly and upsetting sad news. I always really enjoyed seeing Jane. She was someone who—even though I did not know her well—I admired tremendously. I always looked forward to seeing her at SBM and when I visited London, to hearing about her latest brilliant line of research. She was an inspiration. It’s just impossible to believe she is no longer with us.
    – Noel T. Brewer, Associate Professor of Health Behavior, Gillings School of Global Public Health and Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of North Carolina

  • Peter Saseini
    23 October 2015

    Many of us in the Centre for Cancer Prevention feel bereft with the sudden loss of our dear colleague and friend Professor Jane Wardle. Collaboration between our team (formerly, Imperial Cancer Research Fund’s Mathematics, Statistics and Epidemiology Laboratory) and Jane’s Health Behaviour Unit go back over 20 years and I don’t remember a time when it wasn’t amicable and productive. Mathematical statisticians and clinical psychologists make strange bed-fellows due to their very different approaches to scientific research, but all of us who worked with Jane were charmed by her personality, wowed by her intellect, impressed by her willingness to listen and ultimately won over by her argument.
    We worked with Jane on a number of projects relating to cancer screening: the landmark Flexi-Sig trial of bowel screening; studies of HPV testing in cervical screening; information needs for breast cancer screening; and factors that affect cancer screening uptake. We sat on Cancer Research UK committees together reviewing grants, interviewing early career researchers and discussing cancer strategy. Most recently, within the Department of Health’s Policy Research Unit on Cancer Awareness, Screening and Early Diagnosis we designed and discussed projects related to the Cancer Awareness Measure that Jane developed, and worked with her on many other studies.
    There are few colleagues from whom one is happy to receive harsh criticism, but Jane was one. We were discussing ideas for a new study in cancer awareness. I presented an idea for a possible study. Jane listened to my pitch and was quiet during the short discussion that followed. She then announced that it was the most stupid idea she had heard from our group. She was right! We stopped wasting time discussing it and happily chatted about other things over lunch.
    That epidemiologists working in cancer screening and prevention should work closely with psychologists is largely down to Jane Wardle. She was sensible and pragmatic. She generously gave of her time, wisdom and knowledge and was a great team-player. Without doubt Jane was our favourite psychologist, and a lovely person. We will miss her.
    If there is a silver lining it is that Jane was also a superb teacher and mentor. Over the last decade she trained, supervised and encouraged a large number of bright and talented psychologists to become health behaviour researchers. Professor Wardle’s contribution to our research team will be impossible to fill, but she leaves behind so many disciples that we are spoilt for choice in deciding with whom to collaborate in the future.
    – Professor Peter Saseini

  • Peter Vedsted
    23 October 2015

    Jane Wardle was a true collaborator, keen to study specific themes in an international context. When the idea of the International Cancer Benchmark Partnership (ICBP) came up, Jane co-led the ICBP module 2 looking at the impact of people’s attitudes, awareness and beliefs in health care seeking on cancer outcomes. Jane made an incredible effort to ensure the success of this ambitious international research study – from data collection to the writing of high impact papers. And she focused on a continuous use of the data, meaning that the module continues to produce outputs today, three years after the international survey was run. Jane made a huge contribution to the field on the fundamental importance of public awareness and health care seeking in understanding and ensuring earlier cancer diagnosis.

    Jane was a true collaborator, inviting researchers from the international group to visit her department – where they met the inspiring and motivating leader ‘at home’ – as well as generously involving colleagues in the dissemination of the results at conferences, providing helpful feedback.

    Just recently, a group of us asked for her comments on the proposals for yet another paper using the Module 2 data. Jane felt that it was an innovative analysis that should be done as it would add important new knowledge to the field. She won’t now be able to provide her feedback and we will sorely miss her input in the future. But we will remember her and use all the advice, feedback and knowledge that Jane has given us. It will live in the papers that have been written and in those to come, in Jane’s memory.

    -Professor Peter Vedsted, Research Unit for General Practice, Aarhus, Denmark and ICBP lead researcher for Module 2, Denmark

  • Mick Peake
    23 October 2015

    Jane was just a wonderful, all-round human being. Highly intelligent and original in her research, she was always humble and inclusive. She supported a large number of postgraduate students through their early research careers and as a result of that alone, she will leave a lasting legacy. Her research has been hugely influential and the work she was undertaking and planning at the time of her death promised to add significantly to our knowledge. Her death is a huge loss to the cancer community, but she will also be missed simply as the lovely person that she was.
    – Mick Peake, Consultant Respiratory Physician, University Hospitals of Leicester

  • Michel Coleman
    23 October 2015

    Aside from her huge list of academic achievements, Jane was above all a wonderfully warm and funny colleague, and a joy to work with. I will miss her a lot.
    – Michel P Coleman, Professor of Epidemiology and Vital Statistics, Cancer Research UK Cancer Survival Group

    Comments

  • Margo Saunders
    17 January 2016

    I am devastated to learn of the death of Jane Wardle. As a health researcher in Australia with interests in health literacy, men’s health, and food & health, I quickly learned that any publication with Jane’s name on it was worth an immediate read. I have valued her thoughtful contributions and have often thought how wonderful it would be if we had a few more Jane Wardles. She will be greatly missed.

  • Dr Karen Gough
    30 December 2015

    I am so sorry to learn of Jane’s passing through the BPS Psychologist journal. Jane supervised my D Clin Psy dissertation in 1997-98. She was incredibly knowledgable, and extremely patient as a supervisor. Her contribution to Health Psychology is incalculable.

  • Lesley Campbell
    29 December 2015

    I was shocked to hear of Jane’s passing. Although I haven’t seen her for many a year we shared a lot of fun together during our training at the Institute of Psychiatry. At that time my name was Lesley Holloway. We shared a sense of irreverence and Jane encouraged to do my thesis on non-compliance with therapeutic instructions. It was very clear then that she had a brain the size of a planet and a heart to match. Over the years I have followed her career from my much more lowly positions. I have been amazed at the span of her work and her massive contribution,.

  • Dorina Cadar, UCL
    8 November 2015

    It is extremely sad to learn about the passing of Professor Jane Wardle.
    In 2012, when UCL was reorganising the space for PhD students and researchers, she offered me a desk within her research group to complete writing my thesis on lifestyle behaviours and cognitive decline. That was the time, when I learned about the world of Jane Wardle Research group.
    Jane was known for sharing with her students her enthusiasm, motivation and wisdom. She not only brought her love to her group, she also imparted on her students one of the highest standards of academic research. Most of her students (also my colleagues and friends) are now pursuing successful academic careers.
    Jane was a first class mentor and a brilliant researcher. She was a true force and a pioneer in health psychology bringing different perspectives of public health, health behaviours and prediction risks into a combined approach. To me, she was an outstanding academic and a role model.
    Her legacy to the field could be cemented by creating a “Jane Wardle Fellowship” or “Jane Wardle Prize”.

  • Romano Endrighi - NIH Bethesda US
    5 November 2015

    I was truly saddened of learning of Jane’s passing. I knew Jane and most of the wonderful and talented researchers at the HBRC during my time at UCL. She inspired so many people and run the largest and most prolific group of health psychology researchers in Europe. My thoughts are with Andrew and their family in this difficult and trying time.

  • Marta Jackowska Roehampton University
    5 November 2015

    Professor Jane Wardle’s death has broken so many hearts. There are no words that can possibly describe how truly remarkable she was. She transformed lives on a huge scale starting from her pioneering health behaviour research (among other topics) to the lives of those who were privileged to work or study with her. Jane’s life was way, way too short but she managed to make the world we live in a better place. Jane gave me my first ever research job because she believed in me before I did. Thank you Jane. Today at her funeral we found out that Jane loved fireworks, it will be impossible for me now not to think of her each time I see them.

  • Lizzy Lubczanski (nee Leigh), Swiss Re
    5 November 2015

    I very recently came across an old email that made me realise that I owe Jane for even more than I realised. She encouraged Andrew to give me a job even though I wasn’t selected for the one I’d applied for. I then spent 4 years in the Psycholobiology group and Andrew got me through the PhD that’s enabled me to be where I am today. I was privileged to attend Jane’s very sad but very beautiful funeral today; she really was one in a million, and will be missed widely and deeply. My heart goes out to Andrew, her children and all who knew her.

  • Claire Mimnagh
    30 October 2015

    It came as a huge shock to find out about Jane. How can someone who I remember as being so full of life, no longer be here? I worked at UCL for three years as course administrator for the MSc Health Psychology. My memories of Jane are of someone who was profoundly impressive, warm and very funny.

    I’m incredibly grateful to both Jane and Andrew for the opportunities they gave me to get involved in research and for sparking my love of science and Health Psychology. It was quite literally, life changing. My thoughts are with Andrew and their family and everyone in the HBRC.

    Claire Mimnagh, Research Assistant and Consultation Skills tutor, Manchester Medical School.

  • Astrid Mayer
    30 October 2015

    Very sorry to hear the sad news. I have worked with Jane and her group on a number of projects over the years. She has been truly inspirational.

  • Julietta Patnick. Formerly Director NHS Cancer Screening Programmes
    28 October 2015

    Like everyone I have been horribly shocked by this terrible news. She is a terrible loss to us all. I loved listening to Jane. Whenever she was round the table, there would always be a point in the discussion where she just made you think and forget your own agenda. As a lecturer, she would present a new slant on old data, or explain a new concept in a way which made it clear and understandable. She always got my brain going and I really valued her interest in my area of work. This early loss seem so unjust

  • Sophie Pilgrim
    28 October 2015

    I’m so sorry to hear this – Jane was also a wonderful help for CRUK fundraising – no least helping us to secure a £3million donation from a Foundation towards our behavioural research.

  • Jenny Fidler
    27 October 2015

    I worked in the HBRC for nearly ten years, leaving in 2011. In my first week in post, a colleague gave me Jane’s 2002 guardian article, then very recently written. It was a very intimate insight into Jane’s life for such a new starter and at the time quite a challenge to read. However, over time the contents of the article, although remaining in my desk drawer, left my conscious memory as Jane powered on in her tiny frame running the unit with determination, clarity and utter brilliance. I spent many late nights and early mornings in the unit and Jane would pad around in her bare feet (silent, so no one knew she was about to dance in with that musical hello and a swish of a floaty skirt) for a chat before getting down to the important stuff of how something could be done so much better! Yes there were periods of illness, when staff would go for meetings with Jane at home, but to our awareness these were few and far between and rarely impacted upon her ability to carry on working. That this day would come therefore has come as a great shock to me because it never seemed to be an option that Jane wouldn’t be there at the helm and her death is an unquantifiable loss to healthy psychology and cancer research, not to mention to her family, friends and colleagues. My thoughts go out to Andrew and her family, and to the current HBRC team who must be floundering and quite daunted by the sad task ahead as they continue her work. I am so grateful to her for giving me that first opportunity and teaching me so much, for all the advice and support over those years, for challenging track changes documents, for fabulous conference experiences together, for being a shoulder to cry on, for her wonderful witty sense of humour and the reassurance that I’m not the only one who sometimes needs a little bite of chocolate to get going in the morning. Thank you Jane.

  • Clare Llewellyn
    26 October 2015

    I cannot begin to describe what Jane meant to me. I don’t simply owe her my career – she raised me as a scientist. I will never forget the life-changing moment when I first met her. She gave a lecture on the Psychology of Cancer when I was doing my MSc in Health Psychology at UCL in 2006. Her charisma, unbridled passion, and razor-sharp intellect had me hooked. I fell in love with science; and realized that I wanted to work with Jane in any capacity for as long as I could.

    What set her apart from other brilliant scientists and mentors was not just her unwavering loyalty to every member of her group, but her total commitment to any research being undertaken; however small or large. The level of attention she offered in each meeting was almost unnerving; at that moment you felt that you were the only person in the world, and that there was nothing more important than your current question, concern or idea. She combined all of this with a wicked sense of humour, warmth, openness, humility, and an incredible ability to lighten any conversation. I will miss her terribly, but will always be grateful for the privilege of having had her for nine years as both my mentor and my friend.

    Clare Llewellyn, Lecturer at the Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL

  • Andrea Smith, PhD Student, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL
    26 October 2015

    I already miss Jane. It was an immense privilege to have known her and to have had her as my PhD supervisor. There was something wonderfully unique about her in the way that, even though she was a world-class scientist, she remained so down to earth and human in her contacts. Whenever I nervously requested a meeting she would respond nearly immediately and try to arrange a mutually convenient time and place; and this is merely a hint of how generous she was with her commitment to guiding her students through their projects. After every conversation with Jane, I would frantically try to scribble down all the points we had discussed, acutely aware that her insights were too valuable to forget.

    Jane’s determination, wit and ability to make sense of people’s innermost feelings were what made her an amazing inspiration to anybody who knew her. I will always treasure my memories of her and will do my best to harness her enthusiasm and what she taught me to complete our current projects and to inspire any future research.

  • Jinata Subba
    26 October 2015

    I met Jane a year ago and briefly worked for her as a research administrator earlier this year before her treatment began. She was nothing short of spectacular in making me feel welcome and comfortable. She was a power house and it was very obvious what an inspiration she was to so many but the greatest thing about her was that, regardless of hectic schedule, she always had time for everyone. She listened to me talk – teary eyed – about the earthquake back home and this was on day one. Even the most mundane conversations with her were concluded with a little laughter and her emails were always decorated with a kiss because that’s just the kind of lovely she was. I’m so happy to have had the opportunity to surround myself with her positivity (however brief) and will always be thankful for the light she shared.

    Jinata Subba
    PA to Prof Andrew Steptoe
    Research Administrator – Psychobiology Group and HBRC

  • Eleonora d'Orsi
    26 October 2015

    We had not heard these sad news, we are very sorry for this terrible loss. It was an honor and a joy to have met Prof Jane Wardle and worked with her, She was very supportive of my husband Andre Xavier and I. She will be missed. With love, Eleonora d’Orsi

  • Nancy Keating
    26 October 2015

    As a researcher and physician in the US, I was lucky enough to collaborate with Jane Wardle on a paper. We were connected via a colleague who engaged Jane because of her depth of understanding about fatalism. Despite only a relatively brief collaboration, it was quite clear to me that Jane was the epitome of a successful and generous researcher. She had an immense depth of knowledge that she willingly shared. She could dig up a relevant citation in minutes. She was generous with her time and incredibly responsive and prompt despite her demanding schedule. It was an absolute pleasure working with her, and I feel so fortunate to have had the opportunity.

    Nancy Keating, MD, MPH
    Professor of Health Care Policy and Medicine

  • Terry Dovey (Eating behaviour change - Brunel University)
    26 October 2015

    Eating behaviour and health psychology lost one of our pioneers and leaders. A woman who was irrepressible and will be irreplaceable. I had the pleasure of looking after once at a conference as a PhD student. She was get nice and easy to talk to. Always had time to go that extra mile to help you understand and definitely did it in very few words. 10 years later, she will be one person that will inspire us for generations to come. She has definately inspired me. A silent hero of UK and global research that has had a huge impact on society.

  • Sammy Quaife, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL
    25 October 2015

    It is difficult to articulately capture what Jane meant to me; not just a supervisor, she became a very important part of my life, and my inspiration. She was quite simply wonderful. Her intellectual brilliance, infinite wisdom, sharp wit and warmth of character meant she was a complete joy to spend time with. She pushed and nurtured my academic thinking and growth, but was also someone I could confide in about absolutely anything. I will always treasure her advice, mentorship and kindness, and I miss her terribly.

  • Nathalie Kliemann, PhD student, HBRC, UCL
    25 October 2015

    I had the privilege of being Jane’s PhD student for two years. She was a remarkable researcher and a wonderful and very supportive person. She changed my life and career accepting me as her student, and I will be forever grateful for that. She will always be a source of inspiration for me and will be hugely missed!!

  • Emily Power
    24 October 2015

    It’s true, Jane really did have a musical ‘hello’. I can hear it so clearly when I think of her. She was also the only senior figure I’ve come across who ended her staff and student emails with a kiss, a lovely touch that just underlined the tremendous warmth of her personality. Jane was brilliant: a fantastic thinker with relentless energy and enthusiasm for research, a great champion of behavioural science and a wonderful mentor – she was an incredibly busy lady but always had time for a chat. I owe her so much. She gave me the opportunity to complete a PhD at the HBRC, where I spent four very happy years, and then guided me towards a job at CRUK, which I’m still enjoying five years on. I feel incredibly lucky to have worked with Jane so closely for the past 10 years and will really miss her advice and guidance. x

  • Dr Gianluca Baio, Reader in Statistics & Health Economics, Statistical Science, UCL
    24 October 2015

    Terribly sad news. I count myself lucky to have met and (although very briefly) worked with Jane. Her outstanding work will make her impossible to forget. But more than that, I will remember her for the lovely person she was.

  • Peter Fonagy, Head Clinical Educational & Health Psych, UCL
    24 October 2015

    Jane was a tremendous intellect, one of the smartest academics around with wonderful imagination. She had unimaginable breadth and understood everything. She was an extraordinary colleague, sharp, witty, sometimes even mildly cutting, but someone you knew would be always there for you when you needed her. I knew Jane as a junior lecturer at the IoP almost 40 years ago and feel proud to have been part of the group who tried and ultimately succeeded to attract her to UCL. More than that, I feel proud and very grateful to have known this incredible person: intellectually unrivalled and as a character an extraordinary yet totally unpretentious figure. Above all I will miss a wise, funny, caring and inspiring old friend.

  • Ruth Evans, Post Doc Fellow, Birkbeck College
    23 October 2015

    In 2003 Jane offered me the chance to join the HBU to complete my PhD. It took a little longer than planned due to the arrival of my children but Jane’s help, guidance and the loyalty that she inspired got me to my viva in 2011. Working with Jane changed my view of myself personally and professionally through her honesty and generosity. I shall be forever thankful for knowing Jane, she will be sorely missed

  • Andrew Renehan
    23 October 2015

    Shocking and very sad news. I have known Jane for almost ten years, but only started to collaborate in the last 18 months. She had a great gift to take the strength of another’s option and marry it with her wisdom to bring clarify to a research question. It was only 4 weeks ago that Jane was emailing me pursuing the completion of some of our work, keen to bring research to a practical conclusion, ultimately to benefit others. She will be hugely missed in the world of cancer prevention.
    Professor Andrew Renehan, University of Manchester

  • Susie Meisel- former HBRC member, now IoPPN trainee in Clinical Psychology
    23 October 2015

    Jane was so much more to me than a PhD supervisor.She had a profound influence on me an ‘made’ me as a researcher, and in many ways, shaped me profoundly as a person.I will be forever grateful for that. She was incredibly honest and to the point but always with a sense of humour and a lot of compassion. She always had time for me, and my thoughts, no matter what else was going on. I can’t even begin to imagine how busy she was. But it didn’t matter. She taught me to walk my own path, stand on my own two feet, and, perhaps, most importantly, to think for myself. She will always be with me in everything I do. Susie

  • Abi Fisher
    23 October 2015

    I started working with Jane in early 2009. As a new postdoc, feeling slightly unsure of what to do with my life, I took a year-long position with her in the HBRC, then never left. I could write another thesis and hardly begin to capture the essence of Jane. She was wonderful; a truly inspirational scientist, warm, witty, ever-surprising, and as a mentor, simply as good as it gets. No question was ever too trivial, no idea not worth at least exploring. I doubt there are many who have had such a significant positive impact, both on science and personally. I can’t convey how important Jane was to me. She defined the trajectory of my career, introduced me to some of my closest friends, constantly inspired enthusiasm for our work, and so, so much more. We lost someone irreplaceable this week, but I am profoundly grateful to have known her. Abi Fisher, UCL

  • Ali Fildes
    23 October 2015

    I first met Jane when she interviewed me for an administrative support role working on her (then) newly established twin cohort. She was inspirational from the outset and despite her unimaginably busy schedule she made time to chat to me about my thoughts and ideas. Jane repeatedly encouraged me to undertake a PhD and in doing so changed the course of my life and career. I will feel eternally grateful to have had her as my PhD supervisor and mentor. If possible, my admiration for Jane grew even further over the past few months as I watched her deal with the challenges of her illness and treatment. Her positivity, drive and continued enthusiasm for research were at times superhuman. No matter how unwell she felt, she still managed to ask after my mum who was herself diagnosed with leukaemia last year. I will miss our chats forever.
    – Ali Fildes, Health Behaviour Research Centre, UCL.

  • Nora Pashayan, Senior Clinical Lecturer, UCL
    23 October 2015

    I used to look up to Jane and open up for advice. She was approachable and insightful mentor. It tells a lot about Jane how she was keeping mentoring and looking after her staff during her illness while being at home. She will be terribly missed.

  • Becca Beeken, HBRC, UCL
    23 October 2015

    It is hard to put into words what Jane meant to me. A few sentences really cannot do her justice. She was a wonderful mentor- both inspiring and supportive. She would always make time for you, whether it was to talk about your latest idea, paper, or personal crisis. She would challenge you, make you laugh, and offer a perspective that nobody else could. My partner recently said to me that one of the first things he discovered about me was my admiration and love for Jane, my mum described her as ‘my 2nd mum’. It is a true testament to her that she inspired such devotion from so many. She was brilliant and we will always miss her.

  • Anna Roberts
    23 October 2015

    I have just started my PhD in the HBRC and have been overwhelmed by the response to Jane’s passing among her colleagues and students. If I did not know this before, my first few weeks here and reading the many touching tributes and comments have confirmed what a truly remarkable woman she must have been and I feel very unfortunate that I didn’t have the opportunity to meet her. I feel incredibly privileged that I am doing my PhD at the HBRC and am certainly inspired by her legacy to give it my all! My thoughts are with Andrew and the rest of Jane’s family, friends and colleagues.
    – Anna Roberts, PhD student, HBRC.

  • Katriina Whitaker
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the sort of person who was so intelligent, loving and interesting that you never wanted meetings with her to end. She was the greatest mentor anyone could wish for- clever (well beyond clever), funny, and accessible. I am so grateful for every minute I spent in Jane’s company, and will miss her enormously. Katriina Whitaker, University of Surrey.

  • Georgia Black
    23 October 2015

    Jane is part of my extended family, and I grew up being told “you could be like Jane one day” when I became interested in psychology in my teens. I didn’t know what ‘being like Jane’ meant because she seemed so normal. I did indeed pursue a career in psychology and so it transpired that I got a job at UCL after my PhD, a floor above Jane and along from Andrew. I was pleased to see friendly faces in the corridors & my grandmother’s paintings on her office walls. It transpired that my work overlapped with her department’s and I witnessed Professor Jane for the first time – the calm thinker, the polite critic and the inspirational teacher. I wish I’d had many more opportunities, but like others who have commented, she knew exactly who to introduce me to. I now have lots of friends at the HBRC and I’m sure we will be doing research together in Jane’s memory for years to come.
    – Georgia Black, Department of Applied Health Research, UCL

  • Stephen Duffy
    23 October 2015

    Jane was deputy director of the Policy Research Unit and was a tower of strength in our dealings with the Department of Health. I also recall her at meetings for projects which included big, rival personalities. Jane always helped make these meetings productive because both sides liked, trusted and respected her. She was a great person, a marvellous friend and colleague. I don’t want to sound selfish, but I have no idea what we are going to do without her.

  • Lindsay Kobayashi, HBRC
    23 October 2015

    Jane was my PhD supervisor, the person who guided my academic growth. I feel privileged to be a part of her legacy, which really is remarkable in scope and depth. Although I miss her terribly and regret not having the chance to continue working with her, we at the HBRC will all carry her influence forward in our future research and that is a beautiful thing.

  • David Forman
    23 October 2015

    In Jane’s moving and brave Observer article from 2002 about her initial diagnosis, talking about cancer patients and their doctors, she said “people with a foot in both camps might be able to make a special contribution”. This was no more evident than in her own very many special contributions.
    -Dr David Forman, Senior Visiting Scientist, International Agency for Research on Cancer

  • Kat Arney
    23 October 2015

    Since starting as a volunteer at the HBRC through to my postdoctoral work, Jane has championed me and steered my career in directions I did not realise were available. She did this with a kindness, wit and intellect that only those who knew her can appreciate. I will never tire of exchanging stories about Jane with those around me, and if the last few days have taught us anything it is that there are plenty more stories to tell.
    A famous saying around the HBRC, and one that was echoed almost daily within the unit, is that ‘you never leave a job at the HBRC, you simply take on new ones’. I only hope this is true as Jane has created and fostered a group of people that are a credit to her excellence as a scientist, mentor and friend. It is these people who will be her legacy. I miss her dearly already.
    – Sam Smith, Cancer Research UK Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Cancer Prevention, Queen Mary University of London

  • Kat Arney
    23 October 2015

    I first got to know Jane at the Institute of Psychiatry back in the 1980s when she was a clinical psychologist doing work on blood phobia and I had just started to work in the field of smoking cessation. It was evident then that she was a star in the making and since then she has done as much or more than anyone in the world to shape the field of behavioural medicine. I personally owe her a huge debt of gratitude for bringing me to UCL to work in her team and providing such a wonderful, stimulating, collegiate environment – and for being a brilliant, stimulating colleague and friend who was always fun to be with.
    – Professor Robert West, Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Peter Johnson
    23 October 2015

    Jane was a marvellous person working in a special field of science. She brought great wisdom and understanding of human behaviour to the problem of how to help people adjust their lifestyle to reduce their risk of cancer, and played a big role in helping us think about how to train the next generation of researchers as well. We will miss her in many ways.
    – Professor Peter Johnson, Chief Clinician, Cancer Research UK

  • Sarah Jackson
    23 October 2015

    I had the privilege of working with Jane for five years, first as a PhD student and then as a post-doctoral researcher. As well as being an inspirational academic, her kind-hearted and generous nature made Jane the most wonderful supervisor I could ever hope to work with. I hope to continue to produce work she would be proud of throughout the rest of my career. She will be sorely missed by everyone who knew her.
    – Sarah Jackson, UCL

  • Steve Halligan
    23 October 2015

    Jane showed me, a dyed-in-the-wool quantitative researcher, the very real benefits of well-performed qualitative research. Via her open attitude to collaboration, Jane was pivotal in convincing me and my group to perform psychological research in our field (radiology). She was also fundamental to supporting collaborations between my group and researchers who worked for her, collaborations that have gathered much momentum over the years thanks to her facilitatory attitude. Jane will be sorely missed.
    – Steve Halligan, Professor of Radiology, UCL

  • Una Macleod
    23 October 2015

    It is one of the great privileges and pleasures of my professional life that Jane Wardle considered me a peer. But I didn’t think of her as a peer. I considered her a role model, an academic of amazing ability and clarity of thought, a perceptive generous individual with an outstanding grasp of her field. Almost every conversation I had with her was a mixture of trying to work out the current or next research challenge interspersed with her inimitable take on life so it was also fun. I always felt better for talking to her even when she was ill. I recall probably the last conference we were both at – NAEDI 2015 – when we were paired to examine posters during the wine reception. Neither of us had examined posters while drinking red wine plus balancing marking sheets before. We had great fun with it; we hoped the best poster got the prize. I will miss her. As a dependable colleague, as a wise counsellor, as a star in the early cancer diagnosis firmament and as a fair decent person. It was a joy to know her.
    – Una McCleod, Hull York Medical School

  • Yoryos Lyratzopoulos
    23 October 2015

    Jane’s research has completely changed the way we understand cancer diagnosis: from a purely medical problem for doctors and hospitals to a broader societal responsibility and imperative. Her impact on cancer prevention and control policies is immense, and will resonate strongly in global initiatives to stem the tide of rising cancer mortality for many years to come.
    – Yoryos Lyratzopoulos, CRUK Clinician Scientist Fellow & Reader in Cancer Epidemiology, HBRC, UCL

  • Iain Foulkes
    23 October 2015

    Jane was such a great scientist who made an immense contribution to her field and to CRUK.
    We’ll greatly miss her input and her passion – a sad day.
    – Iain Foulkes, Executive Director Strategy & Research Funding, Cancer Research UK

  • Bill Klein
    23 October 2015

    Jane Wardle was the perfect combination one would want in a colleague – a brilliant scientist, exceptional leader and mentor, and kind soul. Few behavioral scientists have had the wide-ranging impact Jane had throughout her career on science, policy, and public health – all the while doing so with humility and rigor. Her intelligence, warmth, and energy will be missed greatly by her peers, but her work ethic and passion will live on in her trainees and colleagues as they continue to pursue the critical work of improving public health.
    – Bill Klein, NIH, US

  • Christian von Wagner
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the greatest mentor I have ever had and a wonderful friend. During the time I knew her, she completely changed my life and helped me develop as an academic and as a person in ways I could not have imagined. Among all the sadness over the last few days, one of the surprises and a source of comfort has been to find out that so many people I have spoken to had the same experience. I will be eternally grateful and miss her terribly.
    – Dr Christian von Wagner, Senior Lecturer in Behavioural Research in Early Diagnosis of Cancer, Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Kate Brain
    23 October 2015

    Jane was a brilliant, generous and inspiring woman. She was a pioneer in understanding the role of health psychology in cancer prevention, who paved the way for researchers working in this field. Jane shared her extensive knowledge and expertise liberally. She gave a helping hand to many researchers, and I am personally thankful to her for opportunities to contribute to the field. She also had an amazing gift for communicating complex scientific concepts in simple, elegant and human terms. Jane was a wonderful role model for women in science and her gift will be felt for years to come. My thoughts are with Jane’s family, friends and colleagues.
    – Kate Brain, University of Cardiff

  • Rosalind Raine
    23 October 2015

    Remembering Jane: her measured judgement, her sensitive approach to multidisciplinary team working, her tireless commitment to her craft. We will miss her.
    – Professor Rosalind Raine, UCL

  • Greg Rubin
    23 October 2015

    She was a wonderful colleague, even though I knew her only for comparatively few years. A deep understanding of her field and razor sharp intellect and at the same time a warm and generous person.
    – Greg Rubin, University of Durham

  • Harpal Kumar
    23 October 2015

    Jane was someone who taught me a great deal in a wonderfully unassuming way. She was a powerful advocate for behavioural science and used it to great effect to enlighten us all about issues in prevention and late diagnosis. She was also a wonderful ambassador for Cancer Research UK. We will miss her greatly.
    – Harpal S. Kumar, Chief Executive, Cancer Research UK.

  • Roganie Govender
    23 October 2015

    I was really nervous the first time I met Jane on the 19 March 2013. She knew nothing about me except that I was a speech and language therapist working in cancer and I was looking for a research supervisor to support me in a grant application with 6 weeks to go to the deadline! She patiently listened to my project pitch (at that stage fairly scantily developed, I thought) and instantly got what I was trying to do in the project! Her manner put me at immediate ease. I was able to answer the questions she had that helped clarify my own thinking about my project. At the end of our meeting, Jane agreed to support me in the grant application process. I recall walking out of her office with a feeling of confidence and renewed inspiration. I decided that I was going to make every effort to submit the grant application despite the tight deadline. I did, and I was successful in obtaining the grant – in no small part to that initial hour-long interaction I had with Jane. I joined the HBRC in March 2014, with Jane as my co-primary supervisor.
    I recently completed my MPhil/PhD upgrade at the HBRC. Jane was having chemo but she somehow remembered the day of my upgrade and sent me her good wishes, apologizing for not being there to support me in person! So in addition to her academic tutelage, this is how I will remember her on a personal level – for the great kindness she showed me when I was no more than a stranger who knocked on her office door, her caring manner and her ability to inspire. In talking to others I know she has done the same for them too. Her academic legacy is so much more than her own prolific research, but will continue in the work of the many students and colleagues she has supported and inspired.
    – Roganie Govender

  • Stephen Halloran
    23 October 2015

    Very sad news, she is a lady for whom I very swiftly developed respect, she had a comprehensive knowledge of her subject, provided a wise insight into behavioural aspects of screening and showed a welcome and pragmatic common sense approach to cancer screening. I will miss Jane and I’m sure she will be greatly missed by my colleagues in the NHS screening programme.
    – Prof Stephen P. Halloran, University of Sussex

  • Jo Waller
    23 October 2015

    I feel incredibly privileged to have worked with Jane for 17 years. She was not only brilliantly clever, but kind, supportive, generous with her time, and always thoughtful about helping her students and colleagues progress in their careers. She had a fantastic sense of humour and meetings with her were full of laughter. I will desperately miss her ideas, wisdom, advice and friendship.
    – Jo Waller, HBRC

  • Gemma Vart
    23 October 2015

    I remember the first meeting I had with Jane; I was quaking in my boots keenly wanting to impress my highly esteemed colleague. What struck me the most was her warmth of spirit, her passion for cancer screening, and her unfathomable work ethic. I went on to learn so much from Jane and for this, together with the opportunities she gave me, I will always be incredibly grateful.
    – Dr Gemma Vart, University of Roehampton

  • Martin Jarvis
    23 October 2015

    I first met Jane in 1976, when I enrolled on the clinical psychology course at the Maudsley, and Jane was a new 25-year old lecturer, having just herself completed the course. She was then, as now, an inspiring mentor. We became good friends and collaborated on some research. In the 1980s, as I worked with Michael Russell on tobacco, my interests shifted from the individual to focus more on the broader population to achieve significant behaviour change. Jane was still working primarily as a clinical psychologist with research interests in dietary restraint and binge eating. If I had an influence on her subsequent career, it was to persuade her of the greater attractions of the population over the individual, and I was instrumental in recruiting her to join ICRF. We were close colleagues and friends from then on.
    The Health Behaviour Unit was Walter Bodmer’s initiative, set up in 1988 to give ICRF, which was then almost entirely focused on molecular biology with a leavening of epidemiology, a presence in behavioural science approaches to cancer prevention. Mike Russell’s tobacco group formed the initial nucleus of the new unit. Jane joined in 1991 to expand research into areas such as screening and food choice. Many in ICRF were unsure that this kind of thing was real science. The HBU was only half accepted and was hanging on by its fingertips. The unit’s quinquennial review in 2000 marked a turning point. We had heard rumours in advance that ICRF, beset by budgetary constraints, was minded to close things down. At the site visit, Jane, who was by then Director of the unit, dazzled the review panel, which included two ICRF scientists later to win Nobels, with the quality of her work and vision, and the HBU got outstanding ratings which ensured funding. That marked the beginning of the acceptance of behavioural cancer prevention into the ICRF mainstream.
    – Professor Martin Jarvis, Emeritus Professor of Health Psychology UCL, Former Principal Scientist, ICRF

  • Katie Robb
    23 October 2015

    Jane was the best teacher I ever had. She was so kind and clever and also very funny. Her enthusiasm for research was infectious and she created a brilliant environment at the HBRC. When I’m working I’m always thinking, ‘how would Jane do this?’ and ‘what would Jane have said about that?’ and to think that I won’t be able to ask her again is very hard. I feel privileged to have known her.
    – Dr Katie Robb, University of Glasgow Leadership Fellow, Institute of Health & Wellbeing

  • Kelly Winstanley
    23 October 2015

    Jane was, without a doubt, the most dedicated and intelligent woman I have ever met. A true inspiration, who always made time to talk. I have learnt so much from working with Jane, and feel privileged to have been able to call her my mentor and my friend. I will miss talking to her, laughing with her and hearing her unique perspective on things. I have learnt so much from Jane, and feel blessed to have known her. She will never be forgotten, and has left a lasting impression on the lives of so many people. I consider myself very lucky to be one of them. Rest in peace, Dearest Jane.
    – Kelly Winstanley, UCL

  • Annie Anderson
    23 October 2015

    For twenty years I have had the priveledge of knowing Jane as a collaborator, committee member, reviewer, guide and mentor – a true light in an often hazy academic world. Her academic legacy is large, outstanding and leading in many areas and a great many of us have and will continue to benefit from her wisdom. Jane as a person was energetic, enthusiastic and fun. Allways warm and welcoming, wise and honest and we will miss her and remember her with love
    – Professor Annie S Anderson, Centre for Public Health Nutrition Research, University of Dundee

  • Alice Forster
    23 October 2015

    Jane helped all of us grow and develop independence as researchers. She was always so incredibly generous with her time. I’m really going to miss her.
    – Alice Forster, PhD, Senior Research Associate, Cancer Research UK-BUPA Cancer Prevention Post-doctoral Fellow, CRUK Health Behaviour Research Centre

  • Wendy Atkin
    23 October 2015

    It is hard to convey briefly my love and admiration for Jane, a dear friend and close colleague, to whom I owe so much. I enjoyed her astounding intellect, creativity, kindness, honesty, integrity, empathy, wit and joie de vivre as did her family, friends, colleagues, students, and the cancer prevention community. Jane was a huge part of my life.
    – Professor Wendy Atkin, Cancer Screening and Prevention Group, Imperial College London

  • Noel Brewer
    23 October 2015

    This is terribly and upsetting sad news. I always really enjoyed seeing Jane. She was someone who—even though I did not know her well—I admired tremendously. I always looked forward to seeing her at SBM and when I visited London, to hearing about her latest brilliant line of research. She was an inspiration. It’s just impossible to believe she is no longer with us.
    – Noel T. Brewer, Associate Professor of Health Behavior, Gillings School of Global Public Health and Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of North Carolina

  • Peter Saseini
    23 October 2015

    Many of us in the Centre for Cancer Prevention feel bereft with the sudden loss of our dear colleague and friend Professor Jane Wardle. Collaboration between our team (formerly, Imperial Cancer Research Fund’s Mathematics, Statistics and Epidemiology Laboratory) and Jane’s Health Behaviour Unit go back over 20 years and I don’t remember a time when it wasn’t amicable and productive. Mathematical statisticians and clinical psychologists make strange bed-fellows due to their very different approaches to scientific research, but all of us who worked with Jane were charmed by her personality, wowed by her intellect, impressed by her willingness to listen and ultimately won over by her argument.
    We worked with Jane on a number of projects relating to cancer screening: the landmark Flexi-Sig trial of bowel screening; studies of HPV testing in cervical screening; information needs for breast cancer screening; and factors that affect cancer screening uptake. We sat on Cancer Research UK committees together reviewing grants, interviewing early career researchers and discussing cancer strategy. Most recently, within the Department of Health’s Policy Research Unit on Cancer Awareness, Screening and Early Diagnosis we designed and discussed projects related to the Cancer Awareness Measure that Jane developed, and worked with her on many other studies.
    There are few colleagues from whom one is happy to receive harsh criticism, but Jane was one. We were discussing ideas for a new study in cancer awareness. I presented an idea for a possible study. Jane listened to my pitch and was quiet during the short discussion that followed. She then announced that it was the most stupid idea she had heard from our group. She was right! We stopped wasting time discussing it and happily chatted about other things over lunch.
    That epidemiologists working in cancer screening and prevention should work closely with psychologists is largely down to Jane Wardle. She was sensible and pragmatic. She generously gave of her time, wisdom and knowledge and was a great team-player. Without doubt Jane was our favourite psychologist, and a lovely person. We will miss her.
    If there is a silver lining it is that Jane was also a superb teacher and mentor. Over the last decade she trained, supervised and encouraged a large number of bright and talented psychologists to become health behaviour researchers. Professor Wardle’s contribution to our research team will be impossible to fill, but she leaves behind so many disciples that we are spoilt for choice in deciding with whom to collaborate in the future.
    – Professor Peter Saseini

  • Peter Vedsted
    23 October 2015

    Jane Wardle was a true collaborator, keen to study specific themes in an international context. When the idea of the International Cancer Benchmark Partnership (ICBP) came up, Jane co-led the ICBP module 2 looking at the impact of people’s attitudes, awareness and beliefs in health care seeking on cancer outcomes. Jane made an incredible effort to ensure the success of this ambitious international research study – from data collection to the writing of high impact papers. And she focused on a continuous use of the data, meaning that the module continues to produce outputs today, three years after the international survey was run. Jane made a huge contribution to the field on the fundamental importance of public awareness and health care seeking in understanding and ensuring earlier cancer diagnosis.

    Jane was a true collaborator, inviting researchers from the international group to visit her department – where they met the inspiring and motivating leader ‘at home’ – as well as generously involving colleagues in the dissemination of the results at conferences, providing helpful feedback.

    Just recently, a group of us asked for her comments on the proposals for yet another paper using the Module 2 data. Jane felt that it was an innovative analysis that should be done as it would add important new knowledge to the field. She won’t now be able to provide her feedback and we will sorely miss her input in the future. But we will remember her and use all the advice, feedback and knowledge that Jane has given us. It will live in the papers that have been written and in those to come, in Jane’s memory.

    -Professor Peter Vedsted, Research Unit for General Practice, Aarhus, Denmark and ICBP lead researcher for Module 2, Denmark

  • Mick Peake
    23 October 2015

    Jane was just a wonderful, all-round human being. Highly intelligent and original in her research, she was always humble and inclusive. She supported a large number of postgraduate students through their early research careers and as a result of that alone, she will leave a lasting legacy. Her research has been hugely influential and the work she was undertaking and planning at the time of her death promised to add significantly to our knowledge. Her death is a huge loss to the cancer community, but she will also be missed simply as the lovely person that she was.
    – Mick Peake, Consultant Respiratory Physician, University Hospitals of Leicester

  • Michel Coleman
    23 October 2015

    Aside from her huge list of academic achievements, Jane was above all a wonderfully warm and funny colleague, and a joy to work with. I will miss her a lot.
    – Michel P Coleman, Professor of Epidemiology and Vital Statistics, Cancer Research UK Cancer Survival Group