Queen Camilla: King Charles is 'getting better'

Queen Camilla has reassured well wishers that King Charles is "getting better" - but then joked "he would be if he behaved himself".



Queen Camilla braved the rain in Rye
Queen Camilla braved the rain in Rye

Queen Camilla has reassured well wishers that King Charles is "getting better".

The 76-year-old royal made a solo visit to a garden party at Lamb House in Rye, East Sussex, on Thursday (16.05.24) and admitted her husband - who has been receiving treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer but recently returned to public duties - was "quite cross" he couldn't join her because he was a big fan of author E.F. Benson, who used to live at the National Trust property.

Having expressed the king is "getting better", Camilla quipped: “Well, he would be if he behaved himself.”

During her visit, Camilla was treated to a performance by veteran actors Timothy West, 89, and Hayley Mills, 78, and had a tour of the property, which had also once been home to authors Henry James and Rumer Godden.

The queen was shown a first edition copy of Benson's 'Miss Mapp' and, noting it was "wonderfully battered", joked: “I might make off with that in my pocket."

But while she didn't get to keep that book, Camilla was presented with 'Fugitive Lyrics', a limited edition copy of poems by Pepino, the late husband of Lucia in the 'Mapp and Lucia' books, which is described in great detail by the author.

She said: "How wonderful, thank you very much."

She was shown various other rare books during her tour and was then taken outside for a garden party celebrating the town's literary history.

Chatting to guests, she said: “I can’t believe I’m in Tilling. It’s such a treat to be here.”

The weather had been wet when Camilla arrived and she apologised to the community organisations assembled at the Church of Saint Mary.

She said: “Sorry it’s a bit damp."

She later told a well wisher: “I’m afraid I haven’t brought the weather.”

Among the volunteers the queen met was 93-year-old Inga Davie, who was wearing a long service medal for her 45 years with the Royal Voluntary Service, of which Camilla is patron.

The royal told her: “You must be one of our longest standing members. You do such a wonderful job. You literally are the skeleton of the country.”