History of NASS

NASS was founded by a group of patients, doctors and physiotherapists at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHRD) in Bath in 1976. 

The MinThe founding members included Dr Allan St John Dixon, MD, FRCP, who has had a long and distinguished career in rheumatology and is still involved with NASS as its current Vice President. Dr Dixon worked on the formation of NASS with Mike Tanfield and the late John Coates, both of whom had AS.   They were joined by Dr Richard Jacoby and Dr Anthony Clarke as Medical Advisers. 

The first NASS director, Fergus Rogers, joined in 1980 and soon became a commanding figure in the world of AS. He did a huge amount to raise the profile of AS and the needs of people with AS. Fergus was  instrumental in setting up many of our NASS branches. He is remembered fondly by many NASS members for his immeasurable care and support. Sadly Fergus died from cancer in 2006. His widow, Brigitte, with whom we are still in contact, set up The Fergus Rogers Memorial Fund to help individual patients in need and to fund research.

NASS has 3 main aims. 

  • To seek a cure for ankylosing spondylitis and related conditions, and improve their treatment in the UK
  • To promote awareness of these conditions in the UK
  • To provide guidance, advice and information for people affected by these conditions including their families, their carers and their employers

NASS is the only registered charity in the UK dedicated to the needs of people with AS in the UK to date.

Page last updated: March 2014