The Duchess of Cornwall visited the Antiques Roadshow as the show welcomed thousands of visitors to the Eden Project in Cornwall today (Tuesday).
During her tour, the Duchess met presenter Fiona Bruce, participated in an Antiques Roadshow game, and brought items from her private collection and the Royal Collection, to be assessed by the show’s experts.
The Duchess was filmed discussing the objects with Justin Croft, an expert in books and manuscripts, and Duncan Campbell, a silver specialist. However, no value was put on the royal items.
As part of her visit, the Duchess joined jewellery specialist Geoffrey Munn and Fiona Bruce in the Mediterranean Biome to film a ”Guess the Mystery Object” game, which will feature in the programme when it is broadcast next year.
The Antiques Roadshow production team gave the Duchess a behind-the-scenes tour as they finished filming the 45th series of the programme, which remains one of the most popular factual programmes on the BBC.
The Duchess also had the opportunity to meet members of the public who brought their items to the Eden Project, to be valued by the team of Roadshow experts.
Fiona Bruce, who has presented Antiques Roadshow since 2008, hosted the tour and said: “I think the Duchess has really enjoyed visiting the Roadshow. She was such a good sport and talked to many of our visitors here, the crew and our specialists.
“She brought along a couple of items, and our book specialist and silver specialist talked her through them. So, I would say she had the full roadshow experience – this is the last programme we’re filming this year and what a wonderful way to end with such a special guest.”
Peter Stewart, chief purpose office at the Eden Project, said: “We’ve been thrilled to welcome HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to Eden today in what has been a very happy and memorable occasion – our first-ever visit from Fiona Bruce and the amazing Antiques Roadshow crew and participants.
“Her Royal Highness has been patron of our biggest community project, The Big Lunch, over the last decade, so it was wonderful to see her back here in the heart of Cornwall.
“We’re sure the thousands of people who came to enjoy the filming of Antiques Roadshow at Eden were surprised and delighted when they caught sight of our special royal guest and millions more will enjoy seeing the show when it’s broadcast by the BBC. This was a day to remember and celebrate in so many ways.”
Robert Murphy, series editor of Antiques Roadshow, said: “The Roadshow team were thrilled to welcome the Duchess of Cornwall to the Eden Project, and in time-honoured fashion, our experts were able to provide some insight into the history of the two fascinating objects she brought along. Viewers will be able to find out more early next year.”
First broadcast in 1979, some of the Roadshow’s most fascinating finds over the years have included a Faberge flower ornament worth £1million, a guitar owned by not one but two Beatles, a handwritten document signed by Elizabeth I, a ring containing a lock of author Charlotte Bronte’s hair, a wristwatch owned by Lawrence of Arabia, a 17th Century miniature book reviewing Shakespeare’s plays, and a leather jacket worn by John F Kennedy.
Winston Churchill’s hat and letters were discovered in a dump near London, a gold necklace in a bag of compost, and a vanity set from Donald Trump’s yacht was found in a charity shop.
This summer, Antiques Roadshow opened the doors to ticketed guests for the first time in its history.