The Royal London Hospital

Image of the outside of The Royal London Hospital.

The Royal London is a leading, internationally renowned teaching hospital based in east London.

We offer a full range of local and specialist services, which includes one of the largest children's hospitals in the UK with one of London's busiest paediatric accident and emergency departments.

Home to London's Air Ambulance, The Royal London is also one of the capital's leading trauma and emergency care centres and hyper-acute stroke centres.

The Royal London Dental Hospital is a leading specialist hospital for first-class dental and oral health care.

Our CQC results

Covid-19 family contact centre and visiting advice

Visting The Royal London Hospital 

From 17 May 2021, we will begin easing some of our visiting restrictions in a safe way.

Visiting a patient on our general wards

Provided you book in with the ward and a visit is allowed by the treating team, for our general wards we are supporting:

  • 1 visitor per day, per patient for 1 hour only
  • The dedicated hour can be between the time of 1pm-8pm 
  • 7 days a week

There are some exceptions, including a visitor who is necessary to assist a patient’s communication and/or to meet their health, emotional, religious or spiritual care needs.

Patients receiving end of life care can have 4 visitors, with a maximum of 2 at the bedside at any one time. Due to social distancing guidelines the other 2 visitors will need to wait off the ward.

Some wards are not open to visitors

This includes our intensive care units (4E and 4F) and surgery wards (3D, day surgery unit and 3F), unless the patient is receiving end-of-life care. This is to protect extremely unwell patients who need extra safety measures in place to keep them safe from infections.

Visiting maternity, children’s wards, outpatient areas or the emergency department:

  • Maternity: one visitor for all antenatal scans (8E), one birthing partner in labour areas, one birthing partner on the postnatal ward (8F). Read more here.
  • Children’s wards and outpatient appointments: two parents or carers (must be the same two people visiting); one is welcome to stay overnight. Please note siblings cannot be a visitor.
  • Emergency and outpatient departments: one visitor for duration of the patient’s visit.

Please speak with the ward you wish to visit to book a visitor appointment and do not visit the hospital unless you have an agreed time.

The health, safety and wellbeing of our patients, communities and staff continues to be our top priority and therefore changes to our visitor policy will be gradual and are subject to change.

If you have questions or would like to set up a virtual visit instead, then please get in touch with the patient and family contact centre.

Get in touch with the family contact centre

Keeping in touch with loved ones

  • Email the team, providing the patient’s name, date of birth, medical record number (if available) and your contact number
  • Phone us on 020 3594 2040
  • Drop in by visiting the centre on the ground floor of the hospital

The family contact centre can speak with the clinical team about your questions and concerns, help arrange language support, dropping off items and food, spiritual and religious support, booking virtual visits and sending photos and messages to loved ones.

If you require urgent out of hours advice or support, please call our switchboard and request a transfer to the site manager. Our site manager will answer or you’ll be prompted to leave a message and they will call you back. Please only speak with the site manager if the issue is urgent, otherwise it will be dealt with the next working day.

Delivering items to your loved one

If you would like to drop off food or personal items such as phone chargers, please visit our main reception off Whitechapel Road. The volunteer team will take your parcels to your relative seven days a week between 10am and 4pm.

Please note that any personal property is brought in at your own risk and we cannot reheat food.

Videos to support you in Bengali, Somali and English

Information in Bengali

Information in Somali

Information in English 

Visit The Royal London Hospital

Switchboard 020 7377 7000

The Royal London Hospital is located in Whitechapel in east London, within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. You can travel to hospital in a number of ways including on foot, by car, by bike or by public transport. Plan your journey using the Transport for London journey planner or through the travel information below.

TfL can offer advice on planning a journey using an accessible route and can provide a mentor to come with you for your first few journeys to help you gain confidence and become an independent traveller, to find out more complete TfL’s form online.

By bus

The following buses stop outside or close to the Royal London Hospital, 25 (24 hour service), 106, 205 and 254 on Whitechapel Road as well as night buses N205 and N253, the D3 on New Road, 15, 115 and 135 as well as night buses N15 and N550 on Commercial Road. Low-floor wheelchair accessible buses run on all routes serving The Royal London Hospital.

By tube

The closest underground station is Whitechapel a 6 minute walk from the Royal London Hospital, which is served by the Hammersmith and City line and the District line as well as the London Overground.

By train

Liverpool Street is the nearest National Rail station a 29 minute walk away. Alternatively you can take the Hammersmith and City line from Whitechapel to Liverpool Street Station. 

Freedom passes

The Freedom Pass for older people allows free travel across London and free local bus journeys nationally.

The travel pass for disabled people allows free travel across London and free bus journeys nationally. You can use your pass on most journeys across London but there are a few exceptions to when and where you can use your card.

A 60+ London Oyster photocard- allows you to travel free on public transport in London from the age of 60 until you qualify for a Freedom Pass. To be eligible for a 60+ London Oyster photocard, you must: Live in a London borough and be aged 60 or over.

To find out more about the above listed Freedom passes visit the London Councils website.

By car or taxi

There is no public parking at the hospital itself so we encourage patients and visitors not to travel by car wherever this is possible. If you do need to drive there is limited metered/phone parking available on streets around The Royal London Hospital. Meters can be found on Turner Street, Ashfield Street, Varden Street and Cavell Street where you can stay for a maximum of 4 hours at a charge of £3.80 per hour.

If you need to be dropped off or picked up, The Royal London Hospital operates a one-way system along Stepney Way road and allows for drop off and pick up in designated laybys, with a maximum stay of 10-minutes.

Infopoint help-points allow you to make free calls to taxi companies and public transport information lines to arrange your journey home. There are infopoints located at the main entrance of the Royal London Hospital, Stepney Way entrance, Dental Hospital entrance, A&E entrance, Women's and Children's entrance, Children's A&E entrance and Luckes entrance.

Blue badge holders

There are a small number of parking bays for drivers with Blue Badges, these are accessed via Raven Row. Drivers who are registered disabled and have a blue badge can also check where to park at on the Tower Hamlets website.

Congestion charge zone

The Royal London hospital is situated just outside the congestion charging zone. If you need to drive through the zone to get to hospital, you are required to pay the charge, although there are some exemptions and discounts. These include:

  • those with disabilities who hold a blue badge

  • residents living within the congestion charging zone

  • drivers of alternative fuel vehicles

A full list of categories of drivers/vehicles eligible for exemptions and details of how to pay the charge can be found on the Transport for London congestion charging website. To qualify for an exemption or discount you must register with Transport for London.

Refunds of hospital transport costs 

You may be able to claim a refund for the cost of your transport to hospital through the Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme (HTCS) if you:

  • are not eligible for patient transport services (PTS)

  • cannot afford the cost of travelling to hospital

  • cannot get a friend or relative to take you

Refer to Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme (HTCS) for more information on who is eligible, what the conditions are and how you can access the scheme.

By bike

We encourage visitors, staff and patients living nearby to cycle to the hospital if possible. Cycle parking facilities are available around the hospital.

There are several cycle routes in the area surrounding the hospital including Cycle Superhighway route 2 (CS2), which runs along the A11 Whitechapel road from Stratford to Aldgate.

The hospital appears on TfL’s Local Cycling Guide 7. You can order this guide for free by calling 0343 222 1234.

Santander cycle hire docking stations are available to hire and dock bikes near to the Royal London Hospital at: 

  • Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel (on Whitechapel road closest to the main entrance to the hospital) 

  • New Road 1, Whitechapel (closest to the Royal London Dental Hospital)

Our facilities

Overnight accommodation

We can offer overnight accommodation for the relatives of patients being admitted to the hospital or for patients who attend the hospital for regular treatment. We can also provide facilities for patients prior to their appointment who have to travel a long way to attend the hospital for complex investigations or treatment, but who do not need to be readmitted to a ward. Please ask the ward staff or pre-admission staff to see if this accommodation would be suitable for you, or your relatives, at any stage of your treatment.

James Hora Home at The Royal London Hospital provides accommodation for relatives and carers supporting critical care patients and surgical patients.
The home can also offer accommodation to outpatients who would have difficulty getting to the hospitals to attend appointments, to pre-admission
patients prior to their surgery and to some patients prior to their hospital treatment.

The home can accommodate up to 26 guests. Please speak to a member of the ward/clinic staff about a referral to stay in James Hora Home or call
them on 07880 553525.

Stevenson House on Ashfield Street is available for the families of children admitted to The Royal London for long stays. It is a 16 bedded house and includes two fully-equipped kitchens, 10 bathrooms, a large shared living room, a playroom and laundry facilities. Direct phone lines connect the wards to family bedrooms. The Sick Children's Trust provides the 'Home from Home' accommodation in Stevenson House, they are a voluntary organisation that do not charge for the stay and rely entirely on donations.

Enquiries should be made via the house manager on telephone 020 7791 2604.

Multi-faith chaplaincy centre

Chaplains of many faiths are available to speak to all patients, relatives and carers. The chaplaincy team welcomes everyone, whatever your faith or beliefs and whether or not you follow a religion. Information about your religious preference will be passed to the chaplaincy. If you do not wish this to happen, please inform a member of staff.

Telephones

There are payphones and direct lines to taxi companies on the ground floor of the main hospital building at the Whitechapel entrance.

Restaurant and kiosk

There is a kiosk selling hot and cold beverages, fruit and snacks in the Stepney Way atrium which is open 8am to 3pm Monday to Friday.

The staff, patient and visitor restaurant is located on the fifth floor of the main building. It is open daily 7.30am to 7pm, including weekends and bank holidays. With impressive views of the surrounding area, the restaurant has 180 seats and serves a varied menu to cater for a range of diets. A selection of hot and cold foods are available in the restaurant.

In the restaurant is a vending machine and water dispenser which are accessible 24 hours a day throughout the week. Find out about disabled access to the restaurant.

Costa Coffee has two cafes on site, one located in the dental hospital on Turner Street and the other at the Whitechapel entrance to the main hospital building.

Cash point

There is a cash point on the wall of the medical college student union building, opposite the outpatients department in Stepney Way.

Cashiers office

A cashier’s office is available on the second floor of the main hospital building, outside of the fracture clinic.

Toilets

Public male, female and disabled toilets are accessible on all floors of the hospital outside of wards.

Wifi

Free wifi is available throughout the hospital for patients. There’s no time limit on use, and capacity has been expanded in order to ensure continuous access for as many users as possible.

Please note that the wifi cannot support streaming movies or high-intensity computer games.

The wifi can be accessed by completing the following steps:

  • Connect to the NHS Wi-Fi wireless network
  • Open your web browser
  • From the welcome page, accept the terms and conditions
  • Browse the internet and send and receive emails

If you encounter any problems please call the 24/7 helpdesk on 0344 848 9555.

Royal London Hospital Museum 

Located in the former crypt of the old Royal London Hospital church of St Philip’s (occupied on the upper floors by the medical school library), the museum celebrates the lives of key figures in the hospital’s history and tells the story of the hospital’s development. Find out more about the museum at The Royal London Hospital.