Location overview

The Royal Free Hospital offers an extensive range of acute and specialist services. Each year, we carry out hundreds of kidney and liver transplants and care for people with different types of cancers, including breast, kidney, liver, skin, pancreatic, lung, colon and neuroendocrine tumours.
 
We're a specialist centre for vascular surgery, rare diseases, haemophilia, amyloidosis and infectious diseases. We're also home to one of only two high level isolation units in the UK which are used in the treatment of high consequence infectious diseases, including Ebola.
 
The hospital is a University College London (UCL) Medical School campus and we train hundreds of medical students each year.

We're also home to a number of research facilities including the UCL Institute of Immunity and Transplantation, the UCL Institute for Liver and Digestive Health, and our NIHR Royal Free Clinical Research Facility for early-stage clinical trials.

Warning alert

Our junior doctors are on strike from 7am on Saturday 24 February until 11.59pm on Wednesday 28 February. You will be contacted directly if your appointment or procedure needs rescheduling.

Getting to us

Parking at the Royal Free Hospital and in the surrounding areas is very limited and there's often a queue for the car park. Therefore, we recommend you come by public transport whenever possible. You can use the TfL Journey Planner to find the best route.

By bus

There are lots of buses that pass by the Royal Free Hospital. Bus routes 1, 24, 46, 268, C11 and N5 all serve the hospital.

By tube

The nearest underground station is Belsize Park on the Northern Line. The walk from Belsize Park station to the hospital takes about seven minutes and is partly uphill.

By train

Hampstead Heath station is very near to the hospital and is on the London Overground. The station accepts Oyster cards.

There are limited facilities for both bicycle and motorcycle parking on site via Pond Street.  

There are bicycle racks outside the ground floor entrance located at the end of the pavement, and on the lower ground floor outside the emergency department. 

Spaces for patient/visitor motorcycles are on the lower level of the multi-storey public car park. 

Limited patient parking (including disabled parking) is available on site, on a first come, first served basis.

If driving to the Royal Free Hospital is preferred, you should allow extra time before your visit/appointment to locate suitable parking on site or to find alternative local parking instead. 

The nearest public parking can be found at East Heath Car Park on East Heath Road. This is an approximate 10-minute walk from the hospital. It has limited spaces and is owned by the City of London Corporation. More details can be found on the City of London Corporation website.

Parking at the Royal Free Hospital

All money generated from car parking goes back into maintaining our facilities and any additional income is directed to our healthcare services.

Our car parks are all ticketless and have an automatic number plate recognition system. The time you are parked in our car parks is measured in units of one hour. Therefore, parking in our car parks for one-and-a-half hours will count as two hours. 

Visitor parking locations

There are two public car parks:

  • Level 00: main entrance on Pond Street
  • Level 01: Rowland Hill Street, access from Haverstock Hill

Parking in staff car parks is strictly prohibited.

Drop-off zones

There is a free five-minute drop off zone located outside the main entrance of the hospital with a strict no waiting policy in force.

There are no pickup and drop off facilities on Rowland Hill Street and the car park at the bottom of Rowland Hill Street is for staff parking only.

Paying for parking

You can pay for your parking time when you arrive, when you leave, or up until midnight on the day of departure.

There are three payment options for the visitor car parks. For all of these you will need to provide your full, correct vehicle registration number:

1.    Pay at the payment machines via cash or card when you are ready to leave.
2.    Pay via PayByPhone using the app or PayByPhone website.
3.    Pay by calling 0330 400 7275 

For options two and three, please use location code 79499.

Parking charges

Duration

Price

Up to one hour

£3.20

Up to two hours

£6.40

Up to three hours

£9.60

Up to four hours

£12.80

Up to five hours

£16.00

Up to six hours

£19.20

Up to seven hours

£22.40

Up to 24 hours

£25.60

Our onsite parking attendants will never ask for your bank or card details to make a payment. Please speak to reception if there are any issues using the parking payment machines.

Car park management and assistance

Our parking facilities and enforcement action are managed onsite by ParkingEye.

To avoid being issued with a parking charge notice (PCN), please follow the instructions on the car park signage, park within designated bays only and avoid causing an obstruction.

If you're issued a PCN and wish to appeal, you should direct your appeal to ParkingEye in the first instance, following the instructions on the notice. Please provide all relevant information and evidence (if available) to support your claim.

If you have any concerns or queries about parking onsite, you can email the parking team at
rf-tr.parkingrfl@nhs.net who will be able to offer advice. The team operate on Monday to Friday from 9am to 5.30pm. For assistance while onsite, please speak to the parking attendants, reception or security staff.

Electric vehicle charging

There are electric vehicle charging point bays at the Pears Building, level 01.

Parking for blue badge holders is free for the duration of your stay in any space in our patient and visitor car parks.

Our sites are managed by automatic number plate recognition cameras so blue badge holders must register on each visit, or once every 24 hours (whichever is shorter), to obtain this concession for the duration of stay.

You must take your blue badge with you to register. You will not be required to return to your car to display this. Failure to register your blue badge will lead to a parking charge notice.

Please register your vehicle registration number and badge with reception staff on arrival. Dedicated blue badge spaces are available near our main entrances.

Concessionary parking is available for the following:

  • patients receiving regular chemotherapy treatment
  • patients receiving regular/weekly treatment after four weeks
  • long term inpatients after four weeks (available to next of kin)
  • ICU/neonatal (available to next of kin)
  • haemophilia patients
  • radiotherapy patients

You can get more information and concessionary parking forms from the designated ward or clinic.

Until you receive confirmation of the parking charge exemption, you'll still need to pay for parking, unless you're a blue badge holder and have registered your badge on arrival.

It's your responsibility to be aware of when your exemption period starts and ends. Before concessionary parking is granted and once the exemption period expires, you'll be liable for the standard visitor parking tariffs. 

Having concessionary parking confirmed does not guarantee a parking space will be available.

Our trust operates the Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme, which provides financial assistance to hospital patients who don't need an ambulance but who require assistance with their travel costs.

Patients on low incomes or in receipt of specific qualifying benefits or allowances are reimbursed, in part or in full, for costs incurred travelling to and from their hospital appointment.

Details on the scheme can be found on the NHS website. More information on our trust's arrangements can be obtained from the cashiers’ office on the lower ground floor of the hospital, opposite the restaurant.

Dial-a-Ride and Taxicard

Dial-a-Ride is a Transport for London service for people with a permanent or long-term disability who are unable to use public transport, while the Taxicard scheme uses licensed London taxis to provide subsidised door-to-door transport for people with serious mobility impairment and difficulty in using public transport. 

Find out more about eligibility for both schemes.

The Royal Free Hospital is located within the London Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and Low Emission Zone (LEZ). This means visitors to the hospital may need to pay a charge if their vehicle does not meet the required standards.  

The Transport for London (TfL) website contains information on how to pay the charges, and who qualifies for refunds or discounts.

You can also check if your vehicle meets TfL standards.

Help with ULEZ costs

Patients who need to travel to our hospitals who are not compliant with current emission standards can reclaim the ULEZ charge if they match the following criteria:

Patients who are clinically assessed as disabled or too ill to travel on public transport, are eligible for reimbursement. This includes patients who:

  • have a compromised immune system
  • require regular therapy or assessment, or recurrent surgical intervention
  • are clinically assessed as being at moderate or high risk from COVID-19

How to reclaim the ULEZ charge if you're eligible

  1. Please pay the charge in the usual way via the TfL website. TfL recommends paying on the day you travel, not in advance, in case you can’t attend, or your appointment is cancelled.
  2. Keep your ULEZ charge receipt or make a note of the receipt number.
  3. Ask for a ‘ULEZ charge patient claim form’ when you arrive in the department for your appointment.
  4. Ask the doctor or healthcare professional who you are seeing to complete the form.
  5. Take the form, your ULEZ charging receipt (or receipt number) and vehicle registration number to the cashiers’ office at the hospital — locations are listed below:
  • Barnet Hospital: level 3, next door to pathology lab
  • Chase Farm Hospital: ground floor, opposite the main entrance
  • Royal Free Hospital: lower ground floor, opposite the restaurant

The Pond Street entrance of the Royal Free Hospital is accessible. However, the approach to the hospital is steep. Lifts are available to the wards and clinics.

We also have:

  • car parking for blue badge holders
  • accessible toilets throughout the hospital
  • hearing loops at the main outpatient reception desks
  • automatic doors at the main entrances
  • wheelchairs for patient use at the main reception

We have a number of food and drink options at our hospital:

  • M&S Simply Food, open Monday to Friday 7am to 8pm, and Saturdays and Sundays 8am to 8pm. It's located on the ground floor.
  • WH Smith, open Monday to Friday 7am to 9pm, and Saturdays and Sundays 9am to 7pm . It's located on the ground floor.
  • Restaurant on the lower ground floor serving breakfast, lunch and dinner at the following times: breakfast — 7 to 10.30am, lunch — 11.30am to 2.30pm and dinner — 4.30 to 7pm.
  • Deli bar (inside the restaurant), open Monday to Friday 11.30am to 2.30pm, serving a selection of hot and cold sandwiches, paninis, wraps, salads and jacket potatoes.
  • The Aromata coffee shop, open Monday to Friday 7am to 5pm, serving coffee, teas, pastries and cakes.
  • Vending café, open Monday to Friday 7am to 7pm, for hot and cold beverages and healthy snack options.

Read more about food and drink options at Royal Free Hospital

There's a cash machine on the ground floor next to the shops and pharmacy.

The pharmacy's opening times are:

  • Monday to Friday: 9am to 6.30pm
  • Saturday, Sunday, bank holidays: 10am to 4pm
  • Christmas day: closed

You can click here to read more about our pharmacy service.

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service office is located in the main reception area and is open Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm.

Most wards operate visiting hours of 2 to 8pm, apart from 8 North, 8 West and 10 North, where they're 1pm to 7pm.

Patients in our intensive care unit can receive visitors between 12pm and 8pm. 

Search for a ward to see its visiting times.