James Whale issues candid confession amid ongoing cancer battle: ‘Might not make the end of this year’

James Whale issues candid confession amid ongoing cancer battle: ‘Might not make the end of this year’
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GB News
Lauren Williams

By Lauren Williams

Published: 17/04/2024

- 20:07

Updated: 17/04/2024

- 22:21

The veteran TV presenter revealed in 2020 that his kidney cancer had aggressively returned and was affecting his kidney, spine, brain and lungs

James Whale recently admitted that he “might make the end of this year, I might not,” as he candidly shared his ongoing battle with stage four kidney cancer.

Whale has been battling cancer since 2000 when he first had a kidney removed, but the cancer came back more aggressively in 2020.

Today, Whale was honoured with an MBE at Windsor Castle in recognition of his extensive services to broadcasting and charity work.

After the ceremony, Whale expressed his surprise at being able to attend and noted: “I didn’t think I’d be here to receive this.

“But who knows? I’ve been terminally ill now for nearly four years. 25 years ago I had the original cancer. So I might make the end of this year, I might not. I might be around next year,” he told PA News Agency.

Despite the extensive battle, Whale remained upbeat and added: “I think you’ve got to be positive. I know it’s getting a bit worse than it was.

James Whale

James Whale was honoured with an MBE today


“You just have to go with the flow really. You have to do that to get through it. One in two of us is going to go on this journey until they find a cure. They will find a cure, but you have to make the most of it.”

Whale started his career at the age of 22 and began his own radio show in the north east of England, and thought he’d have to look for a “proper job” in the future.

He added that he never thought he would have letters after his name and thanked those who had stuck with him over the years.

“When you’re my age and I’ve had a good life you say maybe you have another year left. Four years ago, we thought we had months.

James Whale

James' kidney cancer returned in 2020, with the TV presenter giving up treatment


“The award has been the pinnacle of doing what I’ve done. It makes me feel very proud that somebody has recognised the fact that I’ve spent my entire life being rude to people for entertainment.

“If my parents were alive, they would be in tears. It’s a great honour at the end of your life.”

When the news of his honour was first announced, Kidney Cancer UK said on X: “We are very proud that our founder and Lifetime President @TheJamesWhale was awarded an MBE in the New Years Honours List. Congratulations James.”

Back in September 2023, Whale explained that he had chosen the “quality of life” of quantity after ending his treatment and focuses on “making memories”.

James Whale

James Whale gave an update on his cancer diagnosis


He told The Sun: “This could be my last Christmas. Basically, I have to choose between the quality and quantity of life and I've chosen quality so that I can have a good time and make great memories with my lovely wife, Nadine.

“I've had a good life, I can't complain. But I'm just gonna make the next months as entertaining and interesting as I can, which is all any of us can do.”

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