Our founder Maggie Keswick Jencks used her own experience of having cancer to create a new type of cancer care. The first Maggie’s opened in Edinburgh in 1996, and we now have a network of centres across the UK and some abroad.
A new kind of cancer care
Maggie’s idea was that with the right support, nobody would “lose the joy of living in the fear of dying” when diagnosed with cancer.
Who was Maggie?
Maggie was a writer, gardener and designer. When she was 47, Maggie was diagnosed with breast cancer and five years later, in May 1993, on a visit to the Western General Hospital in Edinburgh, she was told that it had returned.
After hearing this, Maggie and her husband Charles Jencks were moved to a windowless corridor where they were left to process the news. They discussed the need for somewhere ‘better’ for people with cancer to go, outside of but nearby to the hospital.
Maggie and Charles designed the blueprint for the centres together, enlisting the help of some of their friends from the architectural world. The first Maggie’s opened in Edinburgh in 1996, and we now have centres across the UK and even some abroad.