Lawrence Keogh, former head chef at the Wolseley Restaurant in Piccadilly, London, and regular chef on BBC's Saturday Kitchen Live, received his second kidney transplant twenty years after his first.

A delighted Lawrence said that after several years with a catheter, he can't wait to 'jump in a swimming pool' with his three children again.

After three years on peritoneal dialysis (PD) and seven months on haemodialysis (HD), the call for a transplant came very quickly for Lawrence: "I got a phone call at 3:15 a.m. on Friday 28th August telling me a kidney was available."

He then immediately went to Hammersmith Hospital, where he became stressed, and convinced himself that the transplant would not materialise. "Tissue typing caused long delays and I started to believe that it wasn't going to happen." Lawrence said. "I just didn't want to get my hopes up."

After an agonising wait, it was at 3:30 p.m. that Dr Jeremy Crane, consultant transplant surgeon, announced that 'it's on'.

Before he had time to process what was happening, he was whisked away into the operating theatre.

After a four-hour operation, he woke up late on Friday evening before moving to a high dependency unit for continued care.

Lawrence said he was taken aback by the 'genuine care and happiness' from all the staff at Hammersmith Hospital, in particular Dr Crane, who came to see him at 2 a.m. on Sunday morning to check on him.

"The weekend I was in, I was touched and amazed by Jeremy's outstanding duty of care." Lawrence said. "At 2 a.m., after he had been flat out all day, he came to see me to see how I was doing. The support and encouragement from him has not gone unnoticed as I heard patients in close proximity the next day getting his personal touch."

After the procedure, Lawrence felt emotional. Several days later he went to see the nurses in the home-therapy unit to thank them for all the care and support they offered him. He then went to the hospital's chapel where he 'burst into tears'.


Lawrence said he is very grateful to the donor, a 50-year-old female, and her family, for offering him the 'gift of life'. He adds the family will be forever in his thoughts.

His kidney troubles started in 1997, when, at 20 years old, he was diagnosed with IgA nephropathy - a condition where immunoglobulin settles in the kidney and causes scarring and inflammation. His first transplant was undertaken in February 2000.

The father of three (Dillon, Lily and Coco) felt like a 'new man', and carved a successful career for himself as the head chefs at iconic restaurants such as Roast Restaurant in Borough Market and The Wolseley Restaurant, Piccadilly. He also hosted the live cooking stage at BBC's Good Food Show and appeared on BBC1's Saturday Kitchen Live, as well as cooking for business class passengers on-board British Airways' BA001.

However, in 2017, he had a relapse. He started PD and in 2019, he had two mini-strokes, leaving him with temporary loss of speech and temporarily blind. In January 2020, he suffered a bleed on the brain and weighed 103 kg. He said moving to HD made a huge difference, and his weight shot down to 83 kg and his blood pressure came under control.

He adds that being on dialysis for so long was 'mentally difficult' and that he had to be 'strong to get his children through it'. He would often laugh at himself, looking at the 'tubes coming out his stomach'.

Lawrence is now on the mend and will convalesce for three months before planning a few breaks with his partner Kate, whom he says has been an 'inspiration' to him.

Lawrence is also the author of several cook books. One book, entitled 'Taste! Healthy Eating for a Modern Lifestyle', which was endorsed by Gregg Wallace, Michel Roux Jr. and Tom Kerridge, was written for the National Kidney Federation, of which he is a patron. The recipe book aims to help kidney patients eat as wide and healthy a diet as possible. Lawrence's easy-to-follow recipes have proved popular within the renal world.

You can buy a copy by visiting www.kidney.org.uk/shop/nkf-cook-book.

Lawrence also maintains his own website - www.lawrencekeogh.com