The Duke of York opened the new Chase Farm Hospital (CFH), which is one of the most digitally advanced hospitals in the country.

At the new £200 million hospital, which opened to patients last year, HRH helped staff bury a time capsule in the grounds.

The Duke of York has, since 1998, been a patron of the Royal Free London, which runs CFH.

The Duke of York said at the event on Thursday: “It is a huge pleasure to be here today, particularly as I am patron of the Royal Free London, and I am amazed at the speed at which this new hospital has been built.

“Hospitals are about increasing the likelihood of better patient outcomes and patient healthcare, and today I have been around this new hospital, met some of your staff, and it is clear that that intent is being delivered.

“I would like to say congratulations on what you have achieved in the short time this hospital has been open. But more importantly, the work that NHS staff do on a daily basis can go unsung and I just want to pay my thanks to everyone here. Please make the most of this fantastic new building, but remember it is nothing without its contents. I wish you all every success, and it genuinely gives me the hugest privilege and pleasure to say that this hospital is well and truly opened.”

During the visit, HRH was shown around the surgical facilities at the hospital, including the open plan ‘barn’ theatres, which have a specialised air canopy over each station to prevent the spread of infection.