Publish date: 30 April 2024

King Charles III and Queen Camilla met patients and families living with cancer to hear their hopes and fears as they received care at UCLH in London today. 

In one of The King’s first official visits since his cancer diagnosis, Their Majesties visited the University College Hospital Macmillan Cancer Centre. The centre provides some of the most advanced cancer care in the country through its strong clinical trials programme which gives patients access to the newest treatments.

King Charles III and UCLH Patient
UCLH Patient Asha Millen Meets His Majesty The King

The King and Queen met several patients receiving chemotherapy or other drug infusions for a wide range of cancers. 

He spoke to Eileen Rapley, a lung cancer patient and a clinical trial participant at UCLH who said: “I was really pleased to have the opportunity to meet Their Majesties and explain how taking part in research has given me a sense of purpose since my cancer diagnosis. I hope that my contribution will make a difference to future generations and help improve survival rates.” 

UCLH chief executive David Probert said: “We are touched by this visit from Their Majesties and their concern and interest in the experience of our patients and staff.  

“The development of innovative treatment combined with compassionate care is at the heart of what we do at our cancer centre. Huge thanks to our skilled and dedicated teams who consistently strive to provide the very best care possible for our patients.” 

Their Majesties met clinical staff who treat patients at the centre, as well as clinician researchers at the very forefront of cancer research. Two of these were Professor Charles Swanton and Professor Mariam Jamal-Hanjani, who are working to transform our understanding of cancer through translational research.  

Professor Swanton is also Cancer Research UK’s chief clinician and leads TRACERx, a major CRUK-funded collaboration between experts from a wide range of disciplines working together to develop targeted new therapies. His Majesty was also announced as the new patron of Cancer Research UK today. 

Incoming UCLH director of research and consultant haematologist Professor Karl Peggs spoke about the development of clinical trials incorporating cell therapies at UCLH, including CAR-T and Achilles which explore cellular therapies and cancer neo-antigens. 

Their Majesties also met representatives from a range of charities that support the centre including UCLH Charity, Cancer Research UK and Macmillan Cancer Support.