Meet the Team
Our team is led by three professors in paediatric allergy, who collectively have over 60 years’ experience in treating children’s allergies.
Our team have a wealth of knowledge and experience and are passionate about enabling children with allergies to enjoy as stress free a life as possible. Our three Professors have worked together for over 18 years and together, in 2006, established the largest NHS Paediatric Allergy centre at St Thomas’ Hospital, ranked as the UK’s best hospital by Newsweek. The department is recognised as a global centre of excellence and is now part of the Evelina London Children’s Hospital.
George du Toit is Professor in paediatric allergy at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital (part of Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust) and King’s College London. George obtained his medical degree in 1993 at the University of the Witwatersrand before specialising as a Children’s doctor and thereafter further specialising in children’s allergy and asthma at the Red Cross Children’s Hospital, University of Cape Town. In 2000, George took up a post as consultant paediatric allergist at Imperial College London, St Mary’s Hospital, moving to the children’s allergy service at Evelina London Children’s Hospital in 2006.
George has a passion for clinical research and is active in clinical trials focusing on the prevention, treatment and diagnosis of food allergy. He is senior co-investigator on the LEAP-Trio Studies and Co-PI on the EAT-On Study. George has led multi-centre trials aimed at the treatment of peanut allergy through Oral Immunotherapy and the application of a peanut skin patch. These trials have led to the first licensed product for the treatment of peanut allergy.
George is past Chairperson of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI) paediatric section and was awarded the William Frankland Award for Outstanding contribution to Allergy by the British Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in 2017. He received the Daniel Bovet Award for Allergy Treatment and Prevention by the European Association of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in 2020.
Adam read Medicine and Neuroscience at Cambridge University before completing his clinical training at University College, London. After specialist training in Paediatric Allergy in 2006, he spent 9 years as clinical lead for Allergy (Adult & Paediatric) at Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospitals, London – obtaining recognition as an International Centre of Excellence by both the World Allergy Organisation and GALEN (European Asthma & Allergy Network). After 3 years as Clinical Director for Specialist Ambulatory Medicine, he was appointed Deputy Medical Director (Commercial) for Guy’s & St Thomas’ Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in 2018.
Adam is a consultant Paediatric Allergist at Evelina London Children’s Hospital and Professor of Paediatric Allergy at King’s College London. He was the founding Director of the KCL Allergy Academy, a postgraduate educational programme, which was a finalist at the BMJ Awards in 2018.
Adam chaired the UK Department of Health National Care Pathway for Food Allergy in Childhood and was a member of the National Institute of Healthcare and Clinical Excellence (NICE) clinical guideline development group for the assessment and diagnosis of food allergy in children. He previously chaired the Paediatric Committee of the British Society of Allergy & Clinical Immunology and was elected as President, the first Paediatrician to hold this position, from October 2018.
Adam was awarded ‘Paediatric Allergist of the Year’ from Allergy UK in 2007. His doctoral thesis on peanut allergy received the Raymond Horton Smith prize from Cambridge University in 2012 and he was included in The Times ‘Britain’s 100 Best Children’s Doctors’ (2012). Adam received the William Frankland Award for Outstanding contribution to Allergy from the British Society of Allergy & Clinical Immunology in 2015 and a National Clinical Excellence award from the UK Department of Health in 2016 and 2020. He was also listed in the most recent ‘The Tatler Doctors List’ (2013) of the best 250 UK private medical consultants.
Having completed his medical degree at Lincoln College, Oxford University he then completed senior house office appointments at the John Radcliffe in Oxford. He spent four years training as a paediatrician in New York, and a further four years specialising in Paediatric Allergy & Immunology in Denver, Colorado. After a couple of years in Bristol as a Lecturer in Paediatrics, he became a Consultant in Paediatric Allergy at St Mary’s Hospital in London in 1995. Professor Lack led the Department of Paediatric Allergy and Immunology at St Mary’s Hospital, London for 12 years and became Professor of Paediatric Allergy and Immunology at Imperial College London in 2005. He joined King’s College London in 2006 as Professor of Paediatric Allergy and he is currently Head of the Children’s Allergy Service at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital.
Professor Lack was awarded the William Frankland Award for Outstanding contribution to Allergy by the British Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in 2010. He is a Consultant to the Sean Parker Allergy Centre at Stanford University. He is on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and Clinical and Experimental Allergy and is the Secretary to the Food Allergy Section of the World Allergy Organisation.
His research has focused on severe childhood asthma, peanut allergy, and new strategies to prevent and treat food allergies, eczema, asthma, and hay fever in children and adults. His clinical expertise includes allergic asthma, anaphylaxis, and desensitising vaccines to treat hay fever and other allergies. He was the Principal Investigator on the LEAP (Learning Early About Peanut allergy) and EAT (Enquiring About Tolerance) studies, which took place at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital.
Practice Manager Marie Hopson
With 20+ years’ experience, Marie has an extensive knowledge of the private medical industry, working in top private hospitals in London. Marie now provides bespoke paediatric private medical practice management to a number of very well respected and busy General/Specialist Consultant Paediatricians, building practices, promoting growth and excellent relationships at all levels and ensuring at all times the patient experience is of the highest standard. Of course this is all made possible with the support of an excellent team.
For the past 5 years Marie has supported one of the highly respected Allergy Professors’ private practice, involved in the new food allergy immunotherapy service. Marie says “As we move into this new era of peanut desensitisation, I am excited and privileged to be involved in providing the necessary practice management to facilitate the programme and the highly anticipated future expansion to cover other foods.”
Complementing a strong work ethic and vast experience, Marie is a mother of two, albeit now adults, and therefore has huge empathy for patients’ parents.
Specialist Nurse Katherine Knight
Katherine qualified as a children’s nurse at the Nightingale Institute in 1998. She worked at St Thomas’ hospital initially before moving on to a ward sister post then community children’s nursing. It was in this role that she led on the development of an at home acute asthma service and developed an interest in asthma and allergy.
She joined the Evelina allergy service in 2013 and currently works as a Clinical Nurse Specialist. She has experience in nurse led allergy services, food and drug allergy, pollen and venom immunotherapy. Katherine has recently completed an allergy masters at Southampton University.
Katherine is a member of the BSACI and regularly teaches on allergy focused courses as well as being a co-director on the allergy academy ‘allergy in practice’ course. She has twice been nominated and shortlisted for the Guys and St Thomas’ hospital specialist nurse of the year.
Specialist Nurse Victoria Timms
Victoria qualified as a Paediatric Nurse in 2003 after completing her nurse training at The University of Leeds. Following this Victoria worked at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children on a busy general surgical unit and Paediatric Intensive Care Unit. Before specialising in Paediatric Allergy, Victoria gained experience of working as a School Health Advisor, Nurse Counsellor and Sales Account Manager.
Victoria began working in Paediatric Allergy in 2010 when she was a Research Nurse and continued to do so as a Research Sister. In these roles she supported Allergy Research Studies at The Evelina London Children’s Hospital. Victoria joined the Children’s Allergy and Dermatology Service at The Evelina London Children’s Hospital in 2012 as a Deputy Clinical Nurse Specialist being the lead nurse for clinical trial studies (GAP, PRESTO and ASSIGN), the Yellow Fever Vaccination Service for children with egg allergy and the lead nurse for supporting the Nurse Consultant and Clinical Nurse specialists in the provision and delivery of the sublingual and subcutaneous immunotherapy service. Within the three years Victoria was a Deputy Clinical Nurse Specialist, she managed and supervised food and drug challenges, the Allergy and Dermatology Outpatients department, junior staff and nursing students; performed skin prick testing, spirometry, exhaled nitrous oxide testing and administered vaccinations, subcutaneous and sublingual immunotherapy.
In 2015 Victoria joined the Children’s Allergy Research Unit at The Evelina London Children’s Hospital as a Clinical Research Sister to amalgamate her allergy and research experience. In her 3 years within the Allergy Research Unit Victoria had the experience of supporting the Palisade and ARTEMIS oral immunotherapy for peanut studies, she was the Lead/Joint Lead Nurse for the management and provision of a variety of allergy research studies, was one of the Clinical Research Sisters who was responsible for the day to day management and supervision of clinical activity on the unit, managed and supported junior staff and nursing students, and supported recruitment and retention of children and their families who participated in allergy research studies.
In 2018 Victoria rejoined the Children’s Allergy Service at The Evelina London Children’s Hospital as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Paediatric Allergy before moving to support, as a Clinical Nurse Specialist, leading private allergy clinics in London seeing patients from around the world.
Victoria has been nominated for The DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses and an Allergy UK Hero Award in the Health Care Professional Category.
Nurse Consultant in Children’s Allergy James Gardner
James qualified at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London as a Paediatric Nurse and, after working in general paediatrics/haematology, joined the allergy team at St Mary’s Hospital, London then for many years was the lead allergy nurse at the Royal Free Hospital & Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital, both in London.
Most recently has been Children’s and Young Persons Allergy Nurse Consultant at the Great North Children’s Hospital in Newcastle and Associate Clinical Lecturer in Newcastle University where he is Lead of the Allergy E-module programme.
He previously completed his MSc in Allergy from the University of Southampton and focused on the use of component resolved diagnostics in peanut allergy. He is a non-medical prescriber.
His main research interests are in food allergy, allergic rhinitis and MHealth.
He is involved with many food allergy support groups and regularly on various allergy social media groups (Twitter @allergynurseuk)
Here’s what our patients have to say…
Each member of the team that we dealt with, whether medical or support staff, were excellent.
The support has been excellent throughout.
We had a clear plan from early in the process and managed to follow through with only a couple of amendments (which we made).
We have been impressed and very grateful for the speed at which our queries have been responded to.
Parents of Isaac, age 9, Isle of Wight
Excellent. All of the team were very efficient and we found the chart with the dates and dosage for the updosing appointments particularly helpful.
The team were easy to reach, including direct contact with the consultants, even at the weekend and over holiday periods.
The overall experience was excellent.
Parents of Ernie, age 7, Nottingham