MOUNT Vernon Hospital's Cancer Centre could be saved following the collapse of a scheme for a "super hospital".

Plans were revealed in 2003 for the world-renowned cancer centre in Rickmansworth Road, Northwood, to be moved to a new hospital to be built in Hatfield by 2013.

But now health bosses from the East of England Strategic Health Authority and the Hertfordshire Primary Care Trust have revealed they do not have the money for the new hospital.

Hillingdon MPs have joined together and vowed to fight to keep cancer services at Mount Vernon.

MP for Ruislip and Northwood, Nick Hurd (Con), told the Hillingdon Times: "We said at the time when they decided to move the cancer centre to a hospital in Hatfield that it was unacceptable. That plan is now dead because it is unaffordable.

"So we are launching a campaign that says get behind Mount Vernon.

"It is the affordable solution.

"Here we have got the equipment, we have got the people and we have got the support of the community, it is the most convenient place for the two million people in the west London cancer network."

John Randall MP (Con, Uxbridge), said: "It's very important. If we get the real community support which I know is there, I think we can secure the cancer base, just as is now happening at Harefield with the heart service."

John McDonnell MP (Lab, Hayes and Harlington), told the Hillingdon Times: "This a cross-party, completely united campaign to retain cancer services on the site.

"People who are very sick should not be travelling far away for their treatment and Mount Vernon is the ideal solution."

Community support has always been huge from residents of Hillingdon to keep cancer services at Mount Vernon. Campaigns, petitions and fund-raising have all been in place since the centre first came under threat in 1997.

In 2003, the Hillingdon Times ran a campaign to keep cancer services at Mount Vernon and 4,620 signed coupons poured into our offices ,along with hundreds of letters of support from patients past and present, campaigners, health professionals, MPs and concerned residents.

Joan Davies, from Community Voice, an umbrella organisation for local groups, said: "There is the community support here, absolutely. The outrage when it was first suggested it would be moved to Hatfield was huge. Mount Vernon has always had astronomical support from Hillingdon residents."

Hertfordshire primary care trusts said that because the Hatfield hospital had fallen through, cancer services would remain at Mount Vernon - for the short term. But said it was still their intention to move parts of the cancer centre in the future.

Nick Hurd MP said: "We need to send the signal in now. The wheels of decision-making turn so slowly and we now need to force the pace and say we need a decision in support of Mount Vernon now."

It is hoped Mr Hurd's online campaign will be up and running by this weekend.

To show your support for Mount Vernon, log on to the campaign at