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Camilla Parker Bowles’ facialist admits she was a ‘real Diana fan until she met the Duchess’

Royal staff members have criticised the ‘cold’ portrayal of ‘compassionate’ Prince Charles and ‘thoughtful’ Camilla Parker Bowles in The Crown.

The Duchess of Cornwall’s facialist Deborah Mitchell, who worked with her for 14 years, said the 73-year-old is ‘absolutely lovely’ in real life and nothing like her character in series four of the Netflix drama.

She added that she was a ‘real Diana fan until she met Camilla’. Meanwhile former royal butler Grant Harrold said Charles, 72, has also been presented unfairly.

Following last month’s release of the latest series of the hit Netflix show, friends of the Prince of Wales launched a blistering attack on The Crown, accusing producers of ‘trolling on a Hollywood budget’.  

Royal staff members have criticised the ‘cold’ portrayal of ‘compassionate’ Prince Charles and ‘thoughtful’ Camilla Parker Bowles (pictured in Adelaide in 2012) in The Crown

It showed Charles and Camilla conducting an extra marital affair throughout his marriage to Princess Diana. Charles has insisted he remained faithful to his wife until their relationship had ‘irretrievably broken down’.

Following the release of the fourth series of The Crown, Charles and Camilla’s joint Twitter account disabled its reply function after receiving a flood of pro-Diana comments. 

Speaking to Insider, Ms Mitchell, who is founder of Heaven Skincare and spent a lot of time with the couple at Highgrove and their other royal residences, said she didn’t think she would warm to Camilla as much as she did.

‘I wasn’t expecting that she would be absolutely lovely in real life,’ she explained. ‘She’s a very thoughtful person, she’s very much for women’s rights, and when she does any charity work, she does it because she wants to. Not because she has to, or for the fame. 

The Crown series four showed Charles and Camilla (pictured played by Josh O'Connor and Emerald Fennell) conducting an extra marital affair throughout his marriage to Princess Diana

The Crown series four showed Charles and Camilla (pictured played by Josh O’Connor and Emerald Fennell) conducting an extra marital affair throughout his marriage to Princess Diana

‘She doesn’t do anything for any other reason than that it’s the right thing to do.’ 

Ms Mitchell recalled a time when, while visiting Camilla in Birkhall, the Duchess came to her rescue when she realised she hadn’t packed enough warm clothes for the chilly Scottish weather. 

‘The duchess walked in with this brown jumper on, and I said to her that it was lovely,’ she said. ‘That day, she sent one of her people out to get the jumper and give it to me.’ 

The Crown has received criticism for allegedly not doing enough to ensure viewers know it’s a work of fiction, with Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden calling for a historical disclaimer to be added to the beginning of episodes – a claim which actor Josh O’Connor, who plays the Prince of Wales, branded outrageous.  

Charles has insisted he remained faithful to his wife (pictured together in Balmoral in 1981) until their relationship had 'irretrievably broken down'

Charles has insisted he remained faithful to his wife (pictured together in Balmoral in 1981) until their relationship had ‘irretrievably broken down’

Ms Mitchell said she believes the show should go further to notify viewers that its scenes are based on fact but largely fictitious.

She added that Camilla isn’t too concerned by public opinion, revealing: ‘When people do say negative things, she understands that their perception might be very different. 

‘She can only be the way she is, and the words can only come out of her mouth kindly.’

Royal butler Harrold, who worked for Charles between 2004 and 2011, insisted Camilla is not cold or manipulative, as is implied by the drama.

He recalled a time when the Duchess went out of her way to calm his nerves ahead of attending the Royal Family’s Ghillies Ball at Balmoral Castle, a year into his service.

Royal butler Harrold, who worked for Charles between 2004 and 2011, insisted Camilla is not cold or manipulative, as is implied by the drama. Pictured: Charles and Camilla earlier this month

Royal butler Harrold, who worked for Charles between 2004 and 2011, insisted Camilla is not cold or manipulative, as is implied by the drama. Pictured: Charles and Camilla earlier this month

Harrold said he was trying to think of an excuse not to go because he was worried he might do something wrong, but Camilla told him she’d dance with him if he did because she knew it would ‘calm him down’.

At the event, held in a huge ballroom that can hold 150 people, he said she ‘made a beeline’ across the room to find him. ‘This is what people don’t see,’ he added.

Harrold commended actor Josh O’Connor’s portrayal of Charles’ voice and mannerisms, but claimed the drama inaccurately showed the prince ‘shouting and screaming all the time’.

Throughout his seven years of service, during which they were ‘close’, with him around the prince ‘a lot’, the butler said Charles never raised his voice to him.

Ms Mitchell added that Charles is ‘not at all’ the way The Crown portrayed him, adding that the prince is ‘strong, powerful, and compassionate’ and will make an ‘amazing king’. 


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