Prince Philip’s support for Queen praised by Camilla
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Camilla, who is set to become Queen Consort once Prince Charles accedes to the throne, has become the patron of Silver Stories, it was announced on October 3. The charity encourages primary school students, called Silver Readers, to read stories to isolated elderly people, dubbed Silver Listeners, with the aim of increasing youngsters’ confidence in their reading and conversation while helping fight the loneliness of their listeners.
To mark the announcement of her latest patronage, Camilla held a phone call with Ollie, 11, and his sister Tegen, 10, from their school in Nanpean, Cornwall.
During the call, the 74-year-old Duchess listened to the children taking turns to read excerpts from Roald Dahl’s classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and David Walliams’ The Ice Monster.
Camilla, after confessing these books were some of her personal favourites, was told by Ollie he learned how to read less quickly while practising as a Silver Reader.
The Duchess then confessed: “I used to read very, very fast.
“When I made a speech, I used to talk very, very fast and then you have to take a deep breath and slow down and look at the commas and full stops.”
She then spoke about the role of the listener and how Ollie and Tegen’s job is bringing much happiness to the lives of the people they read to.
Camilla said: “When you are sitting by yourself you get a bit lonely, don’t you?
“But it must be so cheering for them to hear your voice reading these lovely stories and I think you are doing an absolutely brilliant job.
“I am sure you help the older generation so much by reading to them.
“It must cheer up their days.
“So, thank you very much indeed, you’re doing a great job. Be good and keep reading.”
The Duchess has made literacy and support of the elderly the cornerstones of her royal work, which makes this latest patronage perfectly fitting.
Among the other organisations focused on literacy she represents are the National Literacy Trust and First Story.
Moreover, in 2011 she was passed on the role of patron of Booktrust by her father-in-law and fellow book lover Prince Philip.
To further promote literacy and simply share her love for reading, Camilla launched at the end of 2020 the Reading Room, her very own book club on Instagram.
There, she has welcomed famous authors who shared their tips and favourite books.
She also published reading lists and her personal recommendations.
Camilla has discussed her relationship with books and how pivotal her father has been in inspiring her love of reading.
Speaking about Major Bruce Shand and her passion for books in an Instagram video, she said: “I think it certainly came from my father, he was probably the best-read man I’ve come across, anywhere.
“I mean, he devoured books. And so, he read to us, as children.
“He chose the books, and we listened.
“And I think it was the love of books, was ingrained in us, because you know, it was there from such an early age.”
In late March, she revealed to have passed on her love for books to her children and grandchildren.
Camilla said in a different clip: “I read to my children and now I read to my grandchildren.
“I love it. I read to them when they were absolutely tiny.
“And they’ve got older and older and older, and now they actually read to me!”
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