The Duchess of Cambridge officially opened the new Ronald McDonald Evelina House at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital Tuesday.
While there, the Duchess met with several of the children and families who stay at the 59-bedroom house meant to accommodate families of children in long-term care at the hospital.
When asked by one of the youngsters, James, whose newborn brother is in intensive care, where Prince George was, the Duchess replied, “George? I should have brought him. He’s at his Montessori nursery today making pancakes.”
The little prince started nursery school near his family house at Anmer Hall in January 2016 and is expected to begin at a new school in London once the Cambridges make a permanent move to the capital in the fall.
James then brought up the possibility of a thunderstorm happening later in the day, to which the Duchess said, “Yes, I know all about those. George likes storms, too.”
Throughout her visit, the Duchess met with families who use the Ronald McDonald Evelina House. One woman, Rebecca Bridges-Wheeler, who delivered early, spoke with Express about meeting the royal.
“I got a bit emotional talking to Kate. It sometimes just rises up,” Bridges-Wheeler told the newspaper. Her baby was born at 23 weeks.
“She stopped talking and let me compose myself. You could see the sympathy in her eyes…She was so warm and down to earth. She seemed very kind-hearted and easy to talk to. She’s also incredibly beautiful, as well.”
The Duchess of Cambridge also met with a family from Gibraltar who had been at the hospital since their daughter Mia was born eight months ago. She was born with renal failure, had both kidneys removed, and is on dialysis until she is big enough to have a transplant.
The Duchess told the couple, “Having a baby is a life-changing moment, but for you having to go through all that as well is extraordinary.”
The Ronald McDonald Evelina House opened in December but was officially opened by the Duchess with a plaque commemorating her visit. There are 14 Ronald McDonald Houses in the United Kingdom and 322 in total around the world in 17 countries.