Charles and Camilla photo marks duchess's 70th birthday

Joanna Lumley and Kathy Lette

To celebrate the 70th birthday of the Duchess of Cornwall Clarence House has released a new official photograph of the Duchess and husband, the Prince of Wales.

The photograph to mark her 70th birthday was taken in May and shows the royal couple in the morning room of Clarence House in London, according to BBC News.

The Peruvian photographer said that when he first met Camilla, more than a decade ago, he "discovered a kind and lovely person with a wonderful sense of humour".

This party was the second held in celebration of the Duchess of Cornwall's birthday in a matter of days. On Thursday, she celebrated in London with the many charities she patronizes.

Indeed some fans, such as her biographer Penny Junor, have suggested that far from being one of the biggest dangers to the House of Windsor and the monarchy in general, warm, earthy and intelligent Camilla is now one of its biggest assets.

"The Camilla question is a little different however, because technically, as Prince Charles" wife, she is also the "Princess of Wales".

Dame Esther said: "The Duchess has an understanding and empathy for older people who are so often forgotten and undervalued in today's busy world". Nearly 20 years later, it is touching to read of the good relationship that Princes William and Harry are said to have with their step mother.

Prince Charles and Camilla's wedding in 2005 followed decades of controversy.

The couple have come a long way since Princess Diana identified Camilla as the "third person" in her marriage to Charles.

Junor made the astonishing claim that Diana confronted Camilla publicly at a party about her relationship with Charles and left a chilling message on her answer phone which said: "I've sent someone to kill you".

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