About this event

  • Date and time Mon 15 Mar 2021 from 6:00pm to 7:40pm
  • Location Online
  • Organised by History of Medicine Society, Hunterian Society

This meeting of the year is devoted to the history of urological surgery, organised in conjunction with the Hunterian Society. The second lecture, John Hunter Lecture honours the lasting contributions of Hunter to surgical and medical science and practice.

This webinar will have a special appeal to surgeons, urologists, medical technologists and engineers. Additionally, a wide range of non-medical professionals will also be interested in these two presentations.  

During this session, you will be able to:

  • Understand something of the broad cultural history of urology, especially from an examination of artistic representations   
  • Become aware of early techniques of surgical urology and their subsequent contribution to the development of the specialty
  • Appreciate the breadth, depth and enthusiasm for the work of John Hunter and his continuing relevance

The History of Medicine Society was founded in 1912 by Sir William Osler, its first President. These talks continue to reveal the importance of learning from the lessons of the past to apply to the present and future. The Society reaches out, inter alia, to clinicians of every specialty (including students), medical scientists, health care professionals, and other interested professionals and members of the general public (e.g. journalists and teachers).

Registration for this webinar will close 2 hours prior to the start time. You will receive the webinar link 2 hours before the meeting. Late registrations will not be accepted. 

This webinar is available for on-demand viewing. The webinar recording will be available for registered delegates up to 30 days after the live webinar broadcast via Zoom. The link will be sent 24 hours after the webinar takes place. 

Join in the conversation online using #RSMLive 
Follow us on Twitter: @RoySocMed 

Key speakers

Mr Ben Challacombe

Consultant Urological Surgeon, Guys & St Thomas Hospital

Speaker's biography

Mr Ben Challacombe is a consultant urological surgeon with a special interest in the minimally invasive treatments of prostatic diseases. He is the Guy’s & St Thomas’ MDM urological cancer and clinical robotics lead, a UK robotic surgery mentor and robotic fellowship director. He trained at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals, The Royal Marsden Hospital and with Professor Tony Costello at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, where he was awarded the prestigious Rowan Nicks Fellowship from the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. He has just completed his term as the British Association of Urology (BAUS) Oncology Section Chairman and the RSM Urology section secretary, and in 2019 was awarded the BAUS Golden Cystoscope for contributions to British urology within 10 years of consultant appointment.


He has learnt both laparoscopic and robotic surgical approaches and performed the first randomised trial of telerobotics between Guy’s and Johns Hopkins Hospitals, in 2002. This formed part of his Master of Surgery thesis on robotic surgery and telemedicine. Mr Challacombe is associate editor of the BJUI, with over 230 peer-reviewed publications, 3 books, and 25 book chapters on minimally invasive and robotic urological techniques.


He has performed over 1000 robotic radical prostatectomies and over 1100 robotic upper tract procedures including 560 robotic partial nephrectomies and also performs holmium laser prostatectomy (HoLEP) with an experience of over 1000 cases. He has also helped to develop both the robotic cystectomy and robotic partial nephrectomy programmes at Guy’s Hospital and is the highest volume surgeon for both robotic partial nephrectomy and upper tract robotics in the UK. His current research interests are in robotic surgery training, trans-perineal template biopsy techniques, active surveillance of low-risk prostate cancer, sentinel node techniques and haptic probe development in robotic surgery. 


Mr Challacombe is a Trustee of The Urology Foundation Charity, for whom he regularly lectures, and is fortunate to have a very supportive surgical wife and three energetic boys.

Mr Jonathan Goddard

Consultant Urological Surgeon, Leicester General Hospital and archivist to British Association of Urological Surgeons

Speaker's biography

Originally from Yorkshire, Mr Jonathan Goddard qualified from The London Hospital winning the Floyer Prize. Whilst there he also completed a BSc in the History of Medicine at The Wellcome Institute. His thesis on naval surgery in the Napoleonic War won the RSM History of Medicine Section prize in 1991. Basic surgical training in Plymouth was followed by a move to the University of Leicester where he was awarded an MD for a thesis on angiogenesis in bladder cancer and also won the 2001 RSM Geoffrey Chisholm Prize.


Mr Giddard remained in the East Midlands for specialist urology training and was appointed as a Consultant Urologist to Leicester General Hospital in 2008. He designed and curates the online Museum of Urology for BAUS, is a member of the History Office of the EAU and a Council Member of the RSM Urology Section.


View programme

Welcome and introduction

Professor Stephen Challacombe, Immediate Past President, History of Medicine Society

The art of urology 

Mr Jonathan Goddard, Consultant Urological Surgeon, Leicester General Hospital and archivist to British Association of Urological Surgeons

Introduced by Professor Susan Standring, President, Hunterian Society 

John Hunter Lecture: Prostate surgery from Hunter to the present time: From lithotomy to robotics

Mr Ben Challacombe, Consultant Urological Surgeon, Guys and St Thomas Hospital 

Introduced by the Immediate Past President to the John Hunter Lecture, Professor Stephen Challacombe 

Close of meeting 



Disclaimer: All views expressed in this webinar are of the speakers themselves and not of the RSM nor the speaker's organisations. 

Special rates for difficult times 

The RSM wishes to offer healthcare professionals continued learning opportunities during the coronavirus pandemic. The RSM’s weekly COVID-19 Series webinars remain free of charge, while there will be small charges to register for other online education. These fees will enable the RSM to continue its programme of activities and will apply during the course of the pandemic.