Brits Warm To Charles And Camilla

The Prince of Wales with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, at Crathie Parish Church in their first public engagement since wedding on Saturday.
AP
Prince Charles and Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, emerged from their honeymoon estate Sunday to attend a small church service with about 200 villagers who braved blustery winds to greet the royal newlyweds.

Driving into the Crathie Parish Church, the couple waved to crowds as they pulled their silver Audi off to the side of the chapel and entered. Locals waved and snapped pictures.

Prince Charles wore a tartan kilt. His bride wore a matching fuchsia hat and coat.

"I think she's lovely," said Lynn Hutchings, 56, a nurse visiting her sister in the Scottish highlands. "I didn't think he should marry her but I've changed my opinion."

Robbie Middleton, a lay preacher, delivered Sunday's sermon, which focused on tuning into one's spirituality and did not refer to the wedding.

"I wish them every happiness and a fulfilled life together," Middleton said after the service.

Charles and Camilla shook hands and chatted with villagers after the sermon, then returned to their honeymoon estate.

Denise Glover, a 61-year-old housewife, congratulated the prince, saying, "I'm sure you'll be very happy."

The prince replied, "Yes, she is a remarkable lady."

The long-awaited wedding — the second for both — sanctioned a relationship that has spanned more than 30 years and was blamed by some for breaking up the prince's marriage to the late Princess Diana, who died in a 1997 car accident in Paris.

Charles and Camilla — officially the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay when they are in Scotland — are staying at Birkhall, a cozy hunting lodge he inherited from his grandmother. The prince, who spent his first honeymoon aboard a yacht in the Mediterranean, and Camilla are expected to stay about 10 days on the estate.

The prince has described the early 18th-century home on the royal Balmoral estate as "a unique haven of coziness and character." He reportedly learned to fish in the River Muick, which flows at the bottom of Birkhall's sloping garden.

Queen Victoria's husband, Prince Albert, bought Birkhall in the 19th century and it became the Balmoral residence of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, who died in 2002, leaving it to Charles.

The prince's mother, Queen Elizabeth II, spent some of her honeymoon there after her marriage to Prince Philip. Charles spent part of his honeymoon with Princess Diana in Scotland, following the cruise, but the late princess was said not to like the estate.

Camilla, 57, is now officially the Princess of Wales, although she will be known as the Duchess of Cornwall in deference to enduring public affection for Diana. When Charles is crowned, she will be queen — but the prince's office says she will use the title "princess consort" instead.

In spite of protestations that the couple wanted something low-key, news of the wedding dominated front pages in Sunday's papers around the world.