Many say a tan just is not worth it after Ely salon owner said they provide health benefits

Tanning World owner Pamela Gilbey, with the new tubes.

Tanning World owner Pamela Gilbey, with the new tubes. - Credit: Archant

Tanning salon owner Pamela Gilbey spoke out last week against the irresponsible practitioners who are giving her industry a bad name. Pamela, who runs Tanning World, in Ely, said that sunbeds, when used in moderation, are safe and can provide a range of health benefits. However, her comments have provoked an angry backlash from readers.

Seriously?! What this lady is saying used to be my philosophy.

As long as it did not burn and did it in moderation it would be good for me.

Guess what... I developed malignant melanoma, not once but three times.

I now have to endure countless scans and doctors appointments to make sure it has not spread. I have an intermediate to high chance that, some day, it will.

This was all because of my stupid choices.

To all girls out there who think having a tan is a great thing... you are wrong. A tan is not worth it!

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Your article was both irresponsible and inaccurate.

Sunbed usage has been linked to malignant melanoma – a pernicious and often fatal disease.

The cost to individuals and families of those affected is devastating. The cost of surgery and drug treatments to the already beleagured NHS huge.

Surely your newspaper has a moral responsibility to publish medically accurate articles and promote a balanced view?


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Where is the balance in this ‘story’?

I support melanoma patients, many of whom have used sunbeds in the past and are now regretting the days when they did, as they are now very poorly people.

Sunbed users will become a huge strain on the NHS in years to come – melanoma treatments are ridiculously expensive – and this disease is increasing year on year.


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I used to think they were fine in moderation and that they were actually doing some good – until I developed melanoma.

Melanoma kills people. Just this week two young women in my support group with young children died.

The World Health Organisation says they are a carcinogenic at the same level as cigarettes. This story is like saying it’s OK to smoke in moderation.

If you Google Australia and sunbeds you will see that they have banned them totally because of the health risks. Why take the risk when there really is no need to?

If you’re low in vitamin D take supplements and if you’ve have a skin condition see a dermatologist or try LED therapy or creams.

You don’t need to lay or stand in a tube of radiation.


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There is only one safe tanning shop and that is one that has gone out of business.

Be pale and healthy and not brown and wrinkly like a dried up raisin.


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Of course it’s good to hear a salon is obeying the law... although if that is in itself a newsworthy story, what does that tell you about the rest?

But as a survivor of a genetic form of melanoma, who still has plenty of family in Ely, it concerns me greatly that the implication is that sunbeds/tanning are intrinsically safe. They aren’t.

We all take risks, but deserve to know what those risks are so our choices are informed.

This story does not provide the full facts.


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I’m a skin cancer survivor and find your article vile and very one-sided. Bad, bad journalism.

As for this woman, I hope her profits are worth her cancer-giving sunbeds.


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Not very good journalism here, did you check your facts? Seems not.

Sunbeds are a carcinogenic and banned in countries like Australia. Melanoma will increase in the next 5-10 years and is set to be the number one cancer in the UK if something isn’t done to get people to realise the dangers of tanning beds and burning themselves to a crisp on holiday.

I’m disgusted that you could print such a story as you clearly haven’t checked your facts and spoken to the experts.


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If the journalist had done his research he would have realised that everything this salon owner is saying is complete and utter rubbish.

Recommending a class one carcinogenic product as safe is both irresponsible and misleading.

Cancer Research UK estimates that sunbeds cause about 440 malignant melanomas each year in the UK. That’s more than one a day.

The best way to get a tan is from out of a bottle.


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As a tanning salon owner, she would say that sunbeds are safe. Sadly, this is not true as many malignant melanoma patients would tell her.

Today’s sun bed use = tomorrow’s cancer treatment.


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Anyone who is suffering from melanoma or knows someone in their family or a friend tragically hit by this disease would be alarmed at these claims.

I suggest they speak to melanoma sufferers or families who have lost their loved ones, or see the surgery and operations we have to go through to stay alive, let alone the aftercare and effect it has on our families.


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It would be difficult to give a worse name to an industry that is responsible for the dramatic rise in the incidence of skin cancer amongst young people.


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As another melanoma sufferer and someone who has lost at least 20 Facebook friends to melanoma in the last two years, I can only say that these tanning salons are promoting an increased risk of getting the disease for nothing more than profit.

Remember – there may be new drugs and new trials but there is NO CURE for melanoma.


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