Her Majesty The Queen met people living with cancer earlier this week when she officially opened Maggie’s Royal Free, a new cancer support centre at the Royal Free Hospital, London.
Her Majesty, President of the cancer support charity, met people living with cancer, staff and supporters of the charity in the new centre designed by internationally renowned architect Daniel Libeskind of Studio Libeskind.
Delivered by our Special Projects team, this important resource in the centre of London offers free support to anyone living with cancer.
The Queen spoke to visitors who have been supported by the charity to hear their experiences of cancer, diagnosis and how visiting Maggie’s has helped them and their families.
One of the people who met Her Majesty was Katie Georgiou, 28, from North London. Katie was diagnosed with Classical Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in April 2022 and has visited Maggie's interim centre for benefits advice, art therapy, yoga, Nordic walking and psychological support.
It was such an honour to meet and speak to Her Majesty The Queen at the beautiful new Maggie’s centre. Finding Maggie’s is like finding a new friendship that makes you into a new person because it opens new doors inside of you. To now have this amazing centre to come to makes a huge difference in contrast to the clinical surroundings of the hospital.Katie Georgiou
The centre offers free support to anyone living with cancer, their family and friends and is based in the grounds of the Royal Free Hospital, which is part of the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust (RFL), one of the largest providers of cancer treatment in the UK. Maggie’s work will complement the treatments received by people of all ages and with any type of cancer at the Royal Free Hospital and from London and the surrounding areas. The RFL receives nearly 50,000 cancer referrals annually. An interim Maggie’s centre has been supporting people on site since 2016.
The centre has been designed to be a breathing space away from the hospital, a home away from home. Its design draws people in with an approachable and undulating timber form. The exterior's folds and curves create a calm and peaceful interior offering privacy, light, and shade. To make the best use of the centre's site within the hospital grounds, the footprint of the ground-floor is small, and the building then expands as it rises. An elevated deck on the roof level creates a serene and private enclosure and skylights flood the lower levels with light from the roof deck.
The centre sits on the grounds of the Royal Free Hospital and can be found at the bottom end of Rowland Hill Street, less than a minute’s walk from the Rowland Hill Street entrance.
Visitors will be able to talk to professional, expert staff, from cancer support specialists to psychologists and benefits advisors, or share experiences with others in a similar situation. We also have professional sessional staff who provide sessions on yoga, relaxation and nutrition and cancer workshops. No appointment or referral is needed, and all support is free.
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