Published 4 May 2007

Prince William has been appointed President of The Royal Marsden Hospital, a position previously held by his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

The Prince, who takes up his position today, hopes to pay regular visits to the hospital and support its cancer treatment and research work in whatever way his military and other commitments allow. The Prince has previously visited the hospital, most recently in December 2005, when he undertook two days work experience in the Children’s Unit. Prince William helped out in a variety of departments, including medical research, catering, and fund-raising, as well as visiting a number of wards including children’s units.

Prince William said today:  “The Royal Marsden does an extraordinary job in treating thousands of cancer patients every year.

"The standards of care and compassion of its staff are unsurpassed in the world.

"I am, therefore, delighted and honoured to become President of the Royal Marsden and will do whatever I can to support its innovative and vital work.”

Tessa Green, Chairman of The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust said: “We are honoured that Prince William has agreed to become our President.

"He follows in the footsteps of his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, who became our President in 1989. The Prince has spent many hours with us at the Hospital and it is wonderful that he is so committed to helping our fight against cancer.”

Founded in 1851, the Royal Marsden was the first hospital in the world dedicated to cancer treatment and research into the causes of cancer.

Today the hospital, with its academic partner, The Institute of Cancer Research, forms the largest comprehensive cancer centre in Europe with over 40,000 patients from the UK and abroad seen each year.

The Royal Family has had a long-term connection with the hospital, beginning in 1910 when the Hospital was granted its Royal Charter of Incorporation by King George V.

Her Majesty The Queen became Patron of the hospital on 3rd June 1952, and Princess Diana became President on 27th June 1989.

In 1991 The Royal Marsden became the first NHS hospital to be awarded The Queen’s Award for Technology for its work on drug development.

The hospital will be one of the charities benefiting from the Concert for Diana, which will be held at Wembley Stadium on 1st July.