Yesterday the Duchess of Cambridge visited those who were harmed in the vicious terrorist attack on London Bridge, and paid tribute to the NHS staff who were tirelessly caring for them at King’s College hospital.
Kate’s visit was not publicised prior to her arrival in order to reduce the amount of attention it received and allow staff to continue treating their patients. The Duchess took the time to thank the staff that treated those affected by the attack on 3 June.
One of those staff members was head of nursing Lynne Watkins-Hulme, who re-lived the shocking moment the victims of the attack were rushed into the hospital. “What was really noticeable on Saturday night was the amount of female patients involved,” she said.
“That was quite traumatic for the staff. We are used to seeing people who are stabbed. But to have six women who were stabbed multiple times, that was upsetting.”
Kate responded, “I suppose at the time you didn’t know how big or what the extent of the incident was. You just got your heads down and got on with it. The response was amazing…What you do is remarkable.”
The attack left eight people dead and many more injured. In total 14 of the victims were taken to King’s College to be treated for stab wounds. It was the second attack to hit the country in recent months, with a suicide bomb killing 22 innocent men, women and children people at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena on the 22 May. A benefit concert was held in their honour less than 24 hours after the shocking scenes unfolded on London Bridge.
Kensington Palace announced the Duchess’s visit on Twitter, the statement said: “The Duchess of Cambridge has arrived @KingsCollegeNHS to visit those affected by the London Bridge and Borough Market attacks.”
King’s College”s chief executive, Nick Moberly greeted the Duchess alongside medical director professor Julia Wendon. Kate was given a tour of the hospital’s emergency department and trauma wards.
According to the Daily Mail Kate was invited to meet two groups of staff who were working on the evening of the attack. She is also reported to have spent some time at the bedside of victims who have not yet been discharged. This was held in private but a hospital spokesperson confirmed that all the victims are now well enough to speak.
Following this the Duchess met with Dr Tunnicliff and Drr Muj Husain who explained the importance of the psychological support offered to staff and victims.
The royals have always tried to visit the victims caught up in terror attacks and thank the staff that care for them. The Queen visited victims of the Manchester bomb attack, which saw 22 people killed and a further 60 injured. The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visited the Royal London Hospital in Whitechapel last week to speak with the staff and 12 victims affected by the London Bridge attack.
Charles told the staff at the adult critical care unit in Whitechapel that his visit was ‘the least he could do’. He added, “I have so much admiration for all you are doing, it’s a fantastic team.”
The attack on London Bridge took place on 3 June. A van ploughed into crowds on London Bridge before three men got out of the van and began attacking people with knives. The three terrorists, who wore fake explosive vets, were shot dead by police within eight minutes of the first 999 call.