The Duchess of Cornwall threw open the gates to Clarence House garden yesterday, hosting a shindig to celebrate her upcoming 70th birthday.
Camilla was joined by a host of guests, with friends, family – including her sister Annabel Elliot and the Duchess’ former husband Andrew Parker Bowles – former staff, and representatives from her charities – plus some famous faces such as Darcey Bussell, Paul O’Grady, Esther Ranzen and Mario Testino – to mark the occasion.
Even a photographer or two that she is familiar with came: The Sun’s Arthur Edwards, Getty’s Chris Jackson and independent Tim Rooke.
The event came just a couple of days after the Duchess held another garden reception to celebrate her birthday with children and authors, to highlight her love of reading and patronage of literacy causes, also launching Duchess Bookshelves.
Prince Charles also mingled with guests in the garden, and was spotted hugging Kathy Lette in greeting.
Charity activist and presenter Paul O’Grady commented on Camilla’s ease of fitting into ‘the Firm’: “It’s taken a lot of guts, you know, it really has.
He added, laughing: “She could have sat there watching daytime telly. But it’s like she’s embraced it, that’s it, she’s really embraced it and gone for it and all her charity work.”
“I’m very fond of her. […] She’s so easy to talk to and she’s passionate about animals which is something else I really respect,” the star said.