Camilla visits a detective drama based on books she has read “cover to cover”

The Duchess of Cornwall jokingly requested a cameo role when she visited the set of the ITV crime drama Grace.

Camilla joined the team and stars on location in West Sussex, including John Simm, who plays troubled police officer Roy Grace, and Peter James, writer of the detective books now turned into a television series.

She told the author, “I love your books. I have read them all, cover to cover. So I’ll vaguely know what’s going on, ”when he greeted her on the Shoreham-by-Sea set.

The Duchess of Cornwall with Peter James, center right, and actor John Simm, right, watch filming in progress (Gareth Fuller / PA)

The series is one of the latest recommendations from her best-selling online book club, The Reading Room.

Commenting on the chilly weather, Camilla said she grew up nearby and every day ‘would come across the hill’ to go swimming at Shoreham, so she was used to the ‘frozen’ conditions they were spinning in.

She complimented Richie Campbell’s character DS Glenn Branson for being a “keen dresser” and joked with Simm about whether he had “sea legs” for the job.

Camilla told Simm, “I was just telling Peter (James), the program was exactly as I imagined Roy Grace’s character. It’s a good cast.

The actor replied, “Oh great, that’s good.”

Royal visit to Sussex

The Duchess told John Simm the crime drama mirrors the books well (Gareth Fuller / PA)

Clearly a fan of the show, Camilla added, “It’s something to look forward to.” During the visit, she also joked about having an appearance on the show.

She then took a seat alongside Simm, James and ITV commissioner Huw Kennair-Jones, donning headphones to watch a scene filmed by the water on a big screen.

When asked if she was a good striped sweater, the Duchess replied: ‘I actually am. I am better on the sea than in the air. I would go on a boat any day. I do not like him [flying] and I try to avoid it when I can. I really hate it.

In the series Simm plays the role of the troubled but methodical detective, whose missing woman casts a shadow over his already eventful career.

The first episodes have proven to be popular and ITV is currently filming the second series which will air in the spring of next year.

Royal visit to Sussex

Camilla had the opportunity to speak to author Peter James during his visit (Gareth Fuller / PA)

Speaking next, Simm said shows like Grace wouldn’t be a success without good writing and scripts.

“Without such incredible writing behind this, this would be just another generic crime drama, he said.

“But because of the source material – I also think of the Frost books, the Morse books – it’s great to have this wealth of material to draw from.

“Reading the books and getting into my character’s head has been a wonderful experience. Books are a huge hit, so it’s up to us not to mess it up.


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