Eight out of 10 UK patients diagnosed with the most dangerous form of skin cancer - malignant melanoma - will now survive their disease, compared with five out of 10 in the early 70s. 

The figures, published by Cancer Research UK, show that 10-year survival has hit 80% in men and 90% in women, compared to 38% in men and 58% in women 40 years ago. 

This is good news for patients, particularly as 35 people a day are diagnosed with the condition.

The substantial leap in survival is likely to be because of the availability of better treatments, earlier diagnosis and a greater awareness of the symptoms, the charity said.

Nevertheless, skin cancer "is one of the fastest rising cancers in the UK, which is likely to be down to our sunbathing habits and the introduction of cheap package holidays in previous decades," noted Harpal Kumar, CR UK’s chief executive.

"More and more people are beating skin cancer but we can’t stop there and we need to develop better treatments for the two out of 10 where things don’t look so good," added Professor Richard Marais, director of the CR UK Paterson Institute for Cancer Research, which is based at the University of Manchester.