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HRH The Duke of York, KG officially opens the new headquarters of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists

13 March 2015

The Duke, patron of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists, opened the new home of the College on Friday 6 March and took a tour of the state-of-the-art training and skills centre, reviewing some aspects of the training required by medical doctors to qualify as ophthalmologists of the future.

Professor Carrie MacEwen, the tenth President of the College and Professor Wallace Foulds CBE, the first President, launched the event with The Duke unveiling a plaque, to commemorate his visit and the official opening of the College.

Professor Carrie MacEwen said, ‘We are honoured that His Royal Highness has officially opened the new home of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists.  This also signifies a new beginning for the College as we continue to raise the profile of the important work ophthalmologists do daily in treating and preserving the sight of patients.’

The College purchased 18 Stephenson Way in 2012 as a rare example of an affordable, unlisted freehold property in central London and close to good transport links.  The College engaged architects Bennetts Associates and the building was completely gutted and refurbished with an additional storey added, retaining some of the original warehouse architectural features.

The excellent facilities boast a superb training and skills centre facility on one floor, a lecture theatre and a well-appointed Council Room for meetings; with state-of-the-art AV systems installed throughout. Professor MacEwen continued, ‘With the new training and skills centre here, we are able to continue educating and training ophthalmologists of the future, which is vital to ensure the eye services provided in hospitals are sustainable and able to meet the demands of an changing population.’

The location in Stephenson Way accommodates 25 staff in the pleasant open-plan spaces that are modern and bright and in reception is a display of the wonderful ophthalmic artefacts that illustrate important aspects of the history of ophthalmology.