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The South West region is the largest of the English regions with a population of 5.2 million, one third of whom live in rural locations outside the major conurbations. Its size, and the relatively small number of people who live in the area, give it the lowest population density of any English health region.

The South West Peninsula Deanery currently coordinates the recruitment and selection of Specialty Registrars in the South West region, and is responsible for their training and assessment. The training scheme is based in the 12 urology units listed below.

If you require further information, email Christina Fontaine (BSoT rep for this region) 

Training Centres

The Training Programme Director (TPD) for South West is Mr Richard Pearcy, based at the Derriford Hospital, Plymouth. If you wish to contact the TPD, please click here to send an email

Training Programme

You'll have attachments for a minimum of four years, one year of which is normally at Southmead Hospital (usually during the latter part of the rotation). However, not all trainees will spend time at Southmead; some will spend their entire rotation in the Peninsula Deanery.

You'll start your rotation in either the Severn or Peninsula end of the rotation. All placements are for one year and the length of the rotation is normally five years, subject to satisfactory progression.

The precise postings are dependent on vacancies, and as a general rule, the more senior trainees tend to have a slightly greater choice of where they would prefer to be posted. Postings tend to be at the discretion of the Training Programme Director, but we do try to minimise consecutive, long-distance moves.

Teaching Programme

There is a formal, Consultant-led teaching programme on a monthly basis. This includes Consultant-led lectures in urology and allied specialties, as well as regular viva practice: attendance at these is mandatory.

In addition to this, you'll be expected to attend two of the regional meetings – The South West Urologists' Annual Meeting and the Annual Meeting of the Bristol Urological Institute (BUI) - as well as national meetings, including the BAUS Annual Scientific Meeting.

Research and Audit

The Bristol Urological Institute (BUI) is one of the largest urology cancer centres in the UK. As part of a patient's treatment we collect and store tissue, blood and/or urine samples in our research biobank. These samples are invaluable and are used in research into prostate, bladder, kidney, testicular and penile cancers.

The tissue, blood and/or urine samples donated underpin most of the work undertaken by the urology cancer research group, which is part of the University of Bristol. Samples are also provided to many other research groups in Bristol and around the UK. This supports a wide range of studies on the causes, disease mechanisms, diagnosis and potential treatment of urological cancers.

The BUI is also involved in research into understanding and improving the quality of life for men and women who suffer from incontinence, overactive bladder and benign prostate enlargement. Some of the research funding comes from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) - Health Technology Assessment (HTA) program.

The Bottom Line

The South West has been named in a Totaljobs survey as the best place to work in Britain. Its combination of cities, countryside, coastline and low population density is hard to beat.  

It has outstanding primary schools, secondary schools, academies, private education and some of the best grammar schools in the country. It is also an ideal location to raise a family, with well-priced rural properties, modern apartments and townhouses.

You can enjoy retail therapy with mainstream and independent stores in Bristol, Bath, Exeter, Plymouth and Taunton, as well as an abundance of local shops in the smaller towns. The region also contains two of the UK's National Parks, Dartmoor and Exmoor.

The social scene is a lively one with many award-winning restaurants, including Wilks and Gidleigh Park, each with a Michelin star. Theatre, comedy and music are well catered for and there are top-rank football and rugby teams, as well as many other sporting events to enjoy.

The South West really does have it all - once you have settled here, you will find it difficult to leave.

Click here to see contacts, hospitals and administrative information for this region

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