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Important information about The Trust - please see the News and Events page

About the Trust

The trust was established in 1996 and commemorates Ben Walton and his year-long fight against oral cancer.

Ben was born at Kittleyknowe, near Carlops, and attended West Linton Primary School and Peebles High School. Ben attended Aberdeen University where he was studying Honours Psychology; in his final year, at the time of his death on 9 December 1995, he was 22 years old.

The Ben Walton Trust is a registered charity number SC024990

BMJ Learning module

Good news from The Ben Walton Trust. The current online module made with BMJ Learning, Mouth cancer: recognising it and referring early, has now been fully updated. The revised module will go live on Monday the 29th of September 2014. It is a free module; for details of guest access and further information, please go to our News and Events page.

What is oral cancer?

Too few people have heard of oral cancer. It is a relatively rare disease compared to some of the more well known cancers with 7698 new cases diagnosed in 2011. Globally it is the sixth most common cancer. However, since the 1980s the number of oral cancers in the UK has risen each year. There are now more deaths per annum, from oral cancer in the UK, than fatalities in road traffic accidents (2010).

No other cancer has shown such a rapid rise in incidence in the past 25 years. The most recent data suggests a rise of over 50% in the last decade. In contrast, lung cancer has decreased over this period.

Oral cancer is on the increase amongst young men and women and most importantly the five year survival rate is less than 50% - because many of these cancers are advanced before they are diagnosed. This survival rate is lower than for melanoma and breast cancer.

Early detection is vital and can lead to a significantly improved survival rate.


Remember, most mouth conditions are not cancerous.

Traditional Risk Factors

The combination of the first two factors considerably heightens the risk.

However, among younger patients in particular, these traditional causes do not always seem to apply.

Download the Ben Walton Trust general information leaflet (PDF).

Download the Ben Walton Trust generic handout (PDF).

Download the Ben Walton Trust - How You Too Can Raise Awareness of Mouth Cancer brochure (PDF).


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