Duchess of Cornwall admits she ‘really misses’ her grandchildren and says it’s ‘strange’ not being able to hug them as she takes part in elderly hotline call
- Duchess of Cornwall, 72, had a ‘friendly chat’ with a Silver Line user this week
- She admitted she missed her grandchildren during the coronavirus lockdown
- But the royal said she has been enjoying spending time outside in the garden
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
The Duchess of Cornwall has confessed to missing her grandchildren during the coronavirus lockdown but has been enjoying spending time outside in the garden.
Camilla’s comments came in a call to an elderly user of the Silver Line, a 24-hour helpline for older people feeling lonely or in need of support, which she represents as patron.
Silver Line’s founder Dame Esther Rantzen joined the call and the trio talked about the Second World War, with the duchess praising the wartime generation saying they ‘have extra strength for the situation we are in now’.
The duchess, who has spent the lockdown with the Prince of Wales in their Scottish home, chatted to a 90-year-old from Hampshire, only identified by her first name Betty, who has spoken to the royal in the past.
Camilla, who has five grandchildren and is known by the nickname GaGa, said: ‘I really miss my grandchildren. That’s the really strange thing about it, not being able to see your grandchildren and giving them a hug.’
The Duchess of Cornwall (pictured at her Scottish home) has confessed to missing her grandchildren during the coronavirus lockdown but has been enjoying spending time outside in the garden
Camilla, 72, called Silver Line user Betty (pictured left), 90, from Hampshire, this week, for a ‘friendly chat’. Dame Esther Rantzen (picturerd right), founder of the Silver Live, also joined the call
Dame Esther and Betty also talked about how they were missing their grandchildren but all three women were enjoying spending time outside in the garden.
After expressing regret that the country is unlikely to have VE Day commemorations in person with the veterans this year, the duchess added: ‘It’s so important that people share their memories of the war.
‘I think that the people who lived through it have extra strength for the situation we are in now. Just like during the war, this situation brings the best out of people.
‘You hear such wonderful stories of people helping others. Your generation was always very modest about these things. We will never see the like of your generation again. People were always thinking about others, and about duty and service and respect and manners. Those are the things I associate with your generation, Betty.’
The duchess commented about how her father, who was wounded and taken prisoner while fighting in north Africa during the war, was reticent about talking about his military service.
A picture of Camilla, Betty and Esther taken at their homes during the conversation was posted to Clarence House’s Instagram page today, along with the above statement
She said: ‘My father was a soldier in the war and we could never get him to talk about it. But when the grandchildren came along, he started talking about it and we got him to write a small book about it. I think it was a huge load off his mind to be able to tell people about it.’
A picture of Camilla, Betty and Esther taken at their homes during the conversation was posted to Clarence House’s Instagram page today.
The royal, dressed in a pink shirt and black blazer combo, as well as denim jeans, could be smiling while holding a black telephone to her ear. She is holding her Battersea Dogs and Cats Home Rescue Jack Russell, Beth, on her lap.
Accompanying the snaps was a statement from the Duchess, which read: ‘For many lonely people, the Silver Line represents a lifeline into the outside world.
‘As its proud Patron I am thinking about all the Silver Liners, the staff and the volunteers in these challenging times.
‘Once again it was a huge pleasure to talk to Betty, as I always find her indomitable spirit truly inspiring.
‘We both agreed that we must all keep picking up the telephone, keep sharing our thoughts and keep making friends… it is these little things that help get us all through these dark days and find light at the end of them.’
The Duchess first spoke to Betty when visiting the charity’s headquarters in 2017 and this week they spoke about how hard it is being separated from family and Betty’s memories of the war.
A caption on the Instagram post read: ‘It is more important than ever for older people to have people to speak to and somewhere to turn to for support.
‘@TheSilverLineUK, of which The Duchess of Cornwall is Patron, is a charity that operates a 24-hour helpline for older people to call if they are lonely or in need of help. Those wishing to speak to someone can call 0800 470 8090, day or night.
‘@Age_UK have launched a Coronavirus Emergency Appeal to help their charity partner @TheSilverLineUK to continue to provide round-the-clock support and a listening ear whenever an older person needs it.’
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