About Us

The Red Lion Group (RLG) is a support group founded in 1994 by a group of patients and staff at St. Mark’s Hospital in London for people who have had or are considering Pouch Surgery – also known as ileal pouch-anal pouch anastomosis (IPAA), the ileo-anal pouch or a restorative proctocolectomy. The pouch is commonly referred to as a “Parks pouch” (after Sir Alan Parks) or “internal pouch“, and also a “J-pouch“, “W-pouch” or “S-pouch” depending on the configuration.

RLG provides a friendly and informed forum for the sharing of ideas, concerns, tips, experiences and information to support pouchees, potential pouchees and their friends and family.

St. Mark’s Hospital is one of the leading hospitals in the world for research into and the treatment of bowel conditions. The original procedure was pioneered by Sir Alan Parks at St. Mark’s Hospital in the mid-to-late 1970s and the work was continued by Professor John Nicholls who has probably performed more pouch operations than anybody worldwide.

However, the Red Lion Group is not just for St. Mark’s Hospital patients. Membership is open to anybody that has had or is considering the procedure.

Join the Red Lion Group

Membership costs £10 (free for under 16s) per year. In hardship cases, fee may be waived. Please contact the membership secretary in strictest confidence).

You can download and print the application form and payment instructions by clicking below:-

Membership forms

Stay in the know

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What's New

Stay up-to-date with all of our latest news, events and stories

Your Internal pouch, dehydration and fragile skin
With our limited reservoirs for storing food and liquids, dehydration and dry skin are common problems for many pouchees. Acting
Read more.
Everything you wanted to know about your internal pouch….
Everything you wanted to know about your internal pouch but were afraid to ask Are you aware of the wealth
Read more.
25th anniversary special – from the first chairman of the RLG
The first chair of the Red Lion Group reflects on the heady days that marked the launch of the Red
Read more.
Treasurer required – Join the Red Lion Group committee!
Would you like to help run the Red Lion Group by joining the committee? We’re a friendly bunch of people
Read more.