State-of-the-Art New Premises for the Gillies McIndoe Research Institute

The Gillies McIndoe Research Institute was officially opened by the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt. Hon. John Key, at Parliament on 3 December 2013

The Gillies McIndoe Research Institute was officially opened by the Prime Minister of New Zealand, the Rt. Hon. John Key, at Parliament on 3 December 2013

A well-attended official opening celebration of the new Gillies McIndoe Research Institute (GMRI) was held at Parliament in early December and the people working at the new premises in Newtown are now settling in.

The GMRI’s new laboratory and associated facilities were officially opened by the Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. John Key, and the occasion was hosted by the Hon. Tony Ryall, Minister of Health. The Prime Minister also unveiled a commemorative plaque which is now in the GMRI foyer.

“Some 300 people attended, including one of our Patrons, Hon. Sir John Jeffries. Other guests included current and former trustees, central and local government politicians and officials, members of the medical and science fraternity, sponsors, donors and other funding supporters along with representatives of the CCDHB and the HVDHB,” says board Chair, Paul Baines.

“It was also wonderful to see some of Swee’s former patients and families, members of the Gillies family and representatives of Fletcher Building, which did the fit-out of the new premises. It was a broad cross-section of participants, supporters and representatives of many organisations. Major supporters were presented with framed certificates.

“At the function Swee talked briefly about the GMRI’s history, his and his colleagues’ vision for the future and the milestone and research value that the new facility represents,” says Mr Baines.

Television New Zealand news covered the event on 3 December for the evening news bulletin and it also appeared in other media.

The new premises come more than 16 years after Dr Swee Tan and his team began their ground-breaking work into strawberry birthmarks, for which they have received world-wide recognition.

Dr Tan has been trying to establish a dedicated laboratory for 15 years but funding challenges meant the team has had to rely on borrowed space until now.

The GMRI is named after the two New Zealanders who pioneered plastic surgery, Sir Harold Gillies and Sir Archibald McIndoe.