Obituary: Lesley Williams

Lesley’s colleague Julie Warner remembers a ‘caring and professional’ radiographer 

Published: 10 May 2024 People

In March of this year, it was with the deepest sorrow that the radiotherapy team at the Sussex Cancer Centre bid a sad and sudden farewell to their irreplaceable colleague Lesley Williams. 

Lesley's dedication and discernment shaped the service for over 35 years, and while her professional legacy will endure for many more years to come, the personal loss is deeply felt by the great many people she befriended and supported during those years.

Lesley joined Brighton after qualifying at Addenbrookes in 1986, and initially intended to spend a couple of years on the south coast before moving on to pastures new. 

However, it was our great fortune that Lesley remained and became a cornerstone of the department and, having spent her career working across every aspect of radiotherapy, was appointed to the role of radiotherapy quality manager in 2001. 

Her impressive ability to decipher the panoply of technical information and professional guidance underpinning radiotherapy meant she was a huge asset to the entire multi-professional team. 

By providing a strong sense of organisational cohesion, Lesley helped the service navigate huge changes, including the addition of two satellite units and the introduction of new technical services such as HDR brachytherapy and tomotherapy.

Lesley partially retired in 2022 to pursue her interests in flora and fauna, participate in local wildlife charities and travel the UK and abroad. 

Nevertheless, she retained a key role in the department by contributing her governance expertise two days a week. 

As Lesley stepped back, she continued to embody the passion and dedication to a profession that is not always easy, but bound together by a common thread of camaraderie, good humour, professional respect and a desire to do the absolute best for every patient. Through all of the changes and challenges of the past three decades, Lesley was always able to connect people together and signpost the best route to improved safety, quality and understanding. 

She was a highly-respected professional and a caring individual who was committed to keeping her colleagues and patients safe and well. 

We will miss her wisdom and her warm smile.