Camilla Parker-Bowles' 'thug move' to Diana after engagement
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Camilla will today pay a visit to Clapham in London to turn on the Christmas lights at the Royal Trinity Hospice, where she is a patron. The Duchess of Cornwall is one of a number of royals on the move, with her husband Prince Charles presenting the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering at St James’ Palace. Meanwhile Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, will attend the Together At Christmas community carol service at Westminster Abbey this evening.
Camilla has become a central and respected figure within the Royal Family since marrying Charles, while she has been praised for her support of over 90 charities either as patron or president.
However, the Duchess faced a less than warm reception in the Royal Family, media and the public after she started openly seeing Charles, with many viewing her as the reason for Charles and Princess Diana’s split in the Nineties.
After her 2005 wedding to the heir apparent, views on her started to soften, according to opinion polls.
She has also successfully engratied herself within The Firm too and the Queen is said to “adore” her.
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Camilla and Charles’ romance first drew major controversy in 1992 when an explosive biography of the Princess of Wales’ revealed their affair.
This was exacerbated in 1993, when a newspaper published the transcript of an intimate conversation between the couple.
The Duchess’ son, Tom, opened up about the scandal in a 2014 interview, and admitted he had been “p***** off” by the affair’s finer details being exposed so publicly.
Speaking to the Times, Tom, 46, said: “I sort of remember not looking at the paper.
“Because, you know, Jesus, the things that we’ve all said to people that we love… that you wouldn’t want the world reading.
“I just felt p***** off.
“I wasn’t going to read that sort of stuff about my mother, just as much as she wouldn’t want to read it about me or my kids certainly wouldn’t want to read it about me.”
Camilla is thought to have first met Charles in the early Seventies, however they both went on to marry other people.
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Camilla wedded Tom’s father, Andrew Parker Bowles, in 1973 while Charles began a tumultuous marriage with Diana in 1981.
While both parties were still married, Charles and Camilla rekindled their romance in 1986, and several years later reports of the affair became public.
Both marriages subsequently ended while Camilla received scathing criticism from the press and public for her perceived role in the breakdown of the Waleses’ marriage.
The Duchess of Cornwall has worked hard to repair her reputation since she wedded Charles and has become a valuable member of the Firm.
However royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk last month that Camilla will always be disliked by a section of the public due to Diana’s never-ending presence in the media cycle.
He said: “Here’s the problem ‒ that anything to do with Diana, which is constantly in the news, does bring back past memories.
“The past decades, and this brings back Diana, will mean obviously that there will always be a section of society that are far from enamoured by Camilla.
“That’s the way of the world.”
Nevertheless, Camilla has become a central figure in the Firm, having quietly gone about her business as future consort to Charles.
She has also been lauded for her charity work, which tends to focus on themes of sexual and domestic violence, literacy, animals and the arts.
Mr Fitzwilliams added: ”Issues such as reading, issues such as abuse, she’s done very well in quite a quiet way ‒ she’s persisting, beginning with osteoporosis.
“There is no question that she’s very valuable and [makes] a very valuable contribution.
“But also of course, as an ideal partnership with the prince.”
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