Prince William to Visit Northeast of England

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge speak with guests as they attend the first Earthshot Prize awards ceremony at Alexandra Palace in London, 2021.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge speak with guests as they attend the first Earthshot Prize awards ceremony at Alexandra Palace in London, 2021.


Tuesday 30th April

His Royal Highness’ first visit of the day will be to Earthshot Prize Finalist, Low Carbon Materials, in Seaham where he will see firsthand how they make their cutting-edge, carbon-negative products, and hear about the impact that being nominated for the Prize has had on the company.

The Prince will then travel to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne to officially open James’ Place Newcastle and hear about the crucial lifeline that the charity’s new centre will provide to men experiencing suicidal crisis in the region.

Engagement 1

Prince William, Founder and President of The Earthshot Prize, will visit Low Carbon Materials in Seaham to learn more about how they create their innovative, low-carbon construction material alternatives, and the exciting work that the company has been able to undertake since becoming a 2022 Earthshot Prize Finalist.

Low Carbon Materials (LCM) was founded by three Material Science PhD students with the vision of becoming a world leader in low-carbon and environmentally friendly construction materials. Recognising the role and dependency on concrete within our built environments, which is responsible for eight per cent of global carbon emissions, Low Carbon Materials set out to develop products with the potential to drastically reduce emissions within the construction industry.

The Prince will first visit LCM’s Research and Development lab where he will be shown how the company creates and tests concrete samples containing its flagship product OSTO®, a carbon negative alternative to other lightweight aggregates. Staff will also demonstrate how LCM is incorporating waste CO2 into their products, helping to further reduce their carbon footprint.

Since becoming an Earthshot Prize Finalist, Low Carbon Materials have been able to expand their work further, developing new products and building partnerships to help accelerate their mission to decarbonise the construction industry. This has included a major partnership with National Highways to help reach their commitment to reaching net zero emissions from construction and maintenance activity by 2040.

His Royal Highness will hear more about the partnership, and LCM’s new product, ACLA®, developed with National Highways, and supported by Skanska, which enables the production of net zero asphalt which absorbs carbon as it is produced. This innovation will help to lower the carbon footprint of our nation’s roads, with ACLA® being used for the first time in a road resurfacing project in County Durham in March 2024.

Engagement 2

Prince William will visit James’ Place Newcastle to hear more about the free, life-saving treatment and support that the charity’s newest centre is providing to men in suicidal crisis. His Royal Highness will tour the building and spend time meeting staff and service users who have been supported by the charity, before officially opening the building. His Royal Highness previously opened the charity’s first centre in Liverpool in 2018, and its London site in 2022.

James’ Place was founded in 2008 by Clare Milford Haven and Nick Wentworth-Stanley following the tragic death of their son James. Aged just 21, James took his own life ten days after a minor operation, after being unable to find the urgent help he so desperately needed for his anxiety and suicidal thoughts. Clare and Nick were determined to prevent other families from losing the men they love and set up the charity to help men in suicidal crisis. Suicide is the single leading cause of death for men under 35, with men three times more likely than women to die by suicide in the UK.

To date, James’ Place has treated over 2,300 suicidal men, with James’ Place Newcastle having already helped over 140 men since opening its doors to referrals in January. Men can self-refer to James’ Place, or be referred to by a health professional, and will typically receive six to eight face to face sessions with a trained therapist in a calm and peaceful environment where they feel safe, valued and respected.

During his visit, the Prince will spend time hearing about the proven success of James’ Place’s provision across its three locations and meet with past clients who have been supported by the charity. His Royal Highness will also hear from staff based at the centre about the impact that the new centre will have in Newcastle, which has one of the highest rates of suicide in England.

The Prince will also spend time meeting donors and clinical stakeholders, before unveiling a plaque to officially open the new building.

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