Kate cancer: Outpouring of support for Catherine after news of diagnosis

The Princess of Wales
Catherine released a video statement on Friday

There has been a huge outpouring of love and support for the Princess of Wales after she revealed she was being treated for cancer.

In a video statement, Catherine said her diagnosis had come as a "huge shock" and that she had been receiving chemotherapy since late February.

Cancer charities have praised her openness, while world leaders, friends and celebrities have wished her well.

The news has also led to calls for her and her family to be given privacy.

In an emotional message on Friday, Catherine explained that when she had had abdominal surgery in January, it was not known that there was any cancer, but subsequent tests "found cancer had been present".

She said it had been an "incredibly tough couple of months" for her family but she was feeling "well and getting stronger every day".

Catherine also said she and Prince William had taken time to sensitively share the state of her health with their children.

Kensington Palace has not disclosed the type of cancer Catherine has been diagnosed with, but says it is confident she will make a full recovery.

King Charles III - who was recently diagnosed with cancer himself - said he was "so proud of Catherine for her courage in speaking as she did".

King Charles and Queen Camilla, who had already been informed about the princess's health, said they would "continue to offer their love and support to the whole family through this difficult time".

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are understood to have reached out privately to the Prince and Princess of Wales following the announcement.

They also released a statement saying they wished Catherine "health and healing", and hoped her and her family could heal "privately and in peace".

Others have also called for her to be given space and privacy to recover, including actor Jamie Lee Curtis and TV presenter Davina McCall.

While X CEO Linda Yaccarino said the princess's request for privacy seemed like "a reasonable request to respect".

Members of the public have also been sharing messages of sympathy with the princess.

Karl from Yorkshire, told BBC Radio 5 Live he wished Catherine the very best. He said he had been diagnosed with cancer two years ago and that telling his three adult children had been "one of the toughest things" he had ever done.

He said he had not yet told his six-year-old daughter because "I don't look ill", adding he did not "envy Kate who doesn't have the luxury of anonymity like me".

Rod Laight, chairman of trustees of the Primrose Hospice in Bromsgrove, said many families would find comfort from Catherine and her words.

"What Princess Kate has achieved will have unbelievable positive effects on the future of everyone involved in cancer care," he added.

Eve Watts, who lives in Windsor, said the news was a "shock because she's so young". She added: "It just shows you it could happen to anyone."

And Ms Watts' mother Valerie, who was visiting the historic town from Southport, said she hoped Catherine's video would "end all the speculation that's been going on".

Eve Watts (left) and her mother Valerie outside Windsor Castle
Eve Watts (left) says she was shocked to hear Catherine's news, adding "it could happen to anyone"

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on Friday that Catherine had shown "tremendous bravery" in the face of "intense scrutiny".

He added: "When it comes to matters of health, like everyone else, she must be afforded the privacy to focus on her treatment and be with her loving family."

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said his thoughts were with the Royal Family, and that he was heartened by the princess's optimism and "message of faith and hope".

In her video statement, the princess said she was thinking of all those who have been affected by cancer, adding: "For everyone facing this disease, in whatever form, please do not lose faith or hope. You are not alone."

Messages of support have also been pouring in from across the world.

US President Joe Biden said he was joining "millions" in praying for Catherine's "full recovery", while his wife Jill Biden described the princess as "brave".

And French President Emmanuel Macron said the princess's "strength and resilience inspire us all".

Catherine and the Prince of Wales are not expected to appear with the Royal Family on Easter Sunday. There will not be any early return to official duties for the princess either.

Kensington Palace has also said Prince William's sudden absence from a memorial service on 27 February was because of the discovery of Catherine's cancer diagnosis.

While Catherine has stood back from royal duties, Charles has continued with his constitutional role as head of state, and was recently seen in a virtual address to a service celebrating Commonwealth Day.