Duchess of Cornwall dons Burberry coat as she serves lunch to to volunteers in a plastic visor

The Duchess of Cornwall today donned a face shield for the second time in public as she headed to Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire to serve lunch to meet volunteers who have overcome recent challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Camilla, 73, refused to stand on ceremony as she rolled up her sleeves and served lunch to a group of pensioners, even cutting up the food for one elderly customer.  

Kay Francis, 96, is almost blind and extremely hard of hearing and had no idea her waitresses was a member of the Royal Family.

As Camilla carefully put a steaming plate of gammon, mash potatoes, carrots and peas in front of her, Kay asked her: ‘Aren’t you going to cut it up?’ Volunteers rushed to help, but the no nonsense Duchess said: ‘Of course I will. More than happy to help.’ 

‘Sorry, I can’t see,’ explained Kay, still oblivious to who it was.

Camilla, 73, refused to stand on ceremony as she rolled up her sleeves and served lunch to a group of pensioners, even cutting up the food for one elderly customer. Kay Francis, 96, is almost blind and extremely hard of hearing and had no idea her waitresses was a member of the Royal Family. 

Camilla, 73, sported a classic Burberry trench coat and floral face mask before heading inside where she donned the visor and a black apron to serve lunch

Camilla, 73, sported a classic Burberry trench coat and floral face mask before heading inside where she donned the visor and a black apron to serve lunch

‘No to worry, I don’t think I can see either, ‘ smiled Camilla.

‘There’s a lot of mash there, don’t worry. Now, there you are. ‘ 

Staff then took the knife and folk from the pensioner due to Covid restrictions and provided her with clean ones.

The royal who is President of the  Royal Voluntary Service looked delighted as she met volunteers and chatted to well-wishers at the  Mill End Community Centre. 

Ensuring she stayed as safe as possible, the royal donned both a face mask and a plastic visor as served up lunch. 

The RVS make  cooked lunches on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays for locals in the area.

Keeping jewellery to a minimum, the wife of Prince Charles accessorised with simple bangles

Keeping jewellery to a minimum, the wife of Prince Charles accessorised with simple bangles

Showing off her easy style, Camilla donned brown leather shoes and a complementing clutch bag as she headed to the venue.

Keeping jewellery to a minimum, the wife of Prince Charles accessorised with simple bangles.

To ensure a practical look while serving guests,  Camilla kept her hair well-coiffed and back while keeping make-up to a minimum. 

The royal who is President of the Royal Voluntary Service looked delighted as she met volunteers

The royal who is President of the Royal Voluntary Service looked delighted as she met volunteers

The duchess was at the Community Centre in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire, in her role as patron of the Royal Voluntary Service, one of the largest volunteering organisations in Great Britain.

The Mill End lunch club provides vital hot meals – and company – for elderly people in the area.

Camilla was invited to come by Doris Winfield, 86, who revealed that after being introduced by the RVS through its lockdown ‘check in and chat’ service, has been secretly corresponding with the duchess since spring by telephone and letter.

She said she was delighted to meet her in person at last.

Showing off her easy style, Camilla donned brown leather shows and a complementing clutch bag as she headed to the venue.

Showing off her easy style, Camilla donned brown leather shows and a complementing clutch bag as she headed to the venue.

Showing off her easy style, Camilla donned brown leather shows and a complementing clutch bag as she headed to the venue. Showing off her easy style, Camilla donned brown leather shows and a complementing clutch bag as she headed to the venue.

The mother of three said: ‘She’s just a lovely, lovely lady.. She has taken time out to speak and write to me without anyone knowing about it.

‘Lockdown was a very lonely time for people like me, I really missed coming here. I used to come every day and now I only come two.

‘Her letters cheered me up no end.’ 

Spotting her pen pal, Camilla – dressed in a blue Fiona Clare dress with a matching floral mask by the same designer – exclaimed in delight: ‘Ah! the famous Doris!’

‘It is so lovely to meet you at last in person. You asked if I would come and here I am! 

The Duchess of Cornwall, in her role as President, Royal Voluntary Service, meets Doris Winfield, 86, during a visit to the Royal Voluntary Service Mill End lunch club in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire

The Duchess of Cornwall, in her role as President, Royal Voluntary Service, meets Doris Winfield, 86, during a visit to the Royal Voluntary Service Mill End lunch club in Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire

‘I wish I could shake your hand but I’m not allowed so I will have to make do by sitting here on the table opposite you.

‘We have had a lot of correspondence so I had to come and see you. Are you still reading your Agatha Christies?’

Serving up the lunches, the duchess joked that ‘I feel like one of those contestants on Masterchef!’ 

Pointing to the visor she donned as a health and safety precaution when serving the food, she laughed and added: ‘I can’t see a thing, this is all steaming up!’ She also had a hoot with Maurice Courtney, 95, who has been coming to the lunch club for more than ten years.

‘Thanks Camilla for giving up your time,’ he said, ‘we’ve had a giggle.’ ‘It’s a great place isn’t it,’ she said.

Let them eat cake! Camilla picked up a tray of sweet treats to serve trifle to the locals at the Royal Voluntary Service

Let them eat cake! Camilla picked up a tray of sweet treats to serve trifle to the locals at the Royal Voluntary Service

‘Yes, it is – bye my love,’ he added, to laughs all round.

‘Jolly good food here, isn’t it, ‘ she said placing down a plate in front of Patsy Pickis, 84.

‘This place is my lifeline,’ she was told, ‘the volunteers are just wonderful.’ ‘Does it make a big difference to your life?’ the duchess asked.

‘Tremendously, ‘ Patsy said, ‘These people are just amazing. We are so lucky. Meeting people as well as having something to eat.’

Putting the cherry on top! Camilla helped serve up the trifle today as she donned the sweet treat with raspberry

Putting the cherry on top! Camilla helped serve up the trifle today as she donned the sweet treat with raspberry

‘It lovely to have something like this,’ Camilla added. ‘Finding friends, especially after covid you must have a lot of catching up to do. It makes all the difference, doesn’t it?’ 

Camilla so enjoyed her time she even stayed on to decorate the trifles for pudding with cream, chocolate sprinkles and raspberries, although she confessed: ‘I’m not very good at this bit.

Chatting with volunteers including Tricia Hegde, 68, Camilla said: ‘I’m told you get as much out of it as they do.’ 

RVS Chief Executive Catherine Johnstone thanked the duchess for her visit, with Camilla telling her and the diners: ‘It is entirely due to Doris, over there, that I am here today. 

To finish off the delicious cream, custard and jelly desserts Camilla added a handful of fresh raspberries to the top for decoration

To finish off the delicious cream, custard and jelly desserts Camilla added a handful of fresh raspberries to the top for decoration

We talked on the telephone and corresponded and she told that she came to this wonderful lunch club in Rickmansworth and said if you are ever coming this way, please drop in. So here I am!

‘I’ve tried my hand in the kitchen, not very successfully, but I just wanted to thank all the volunteers, you do the most wonderful job. I am very proud to be part of the RVS. I am sure all these ladies here appreciate how much you do.

‘I hope everyone will get up and do their bit to volunteer.’ 

The RVS is today launching its ‘Hour of Need’ campaign, calling on the British public to volunteer for at least an hour per week to help support each other through the winter COVID-19 crisis.

Her appearance in a visor comes a month after she first donned the plastic face covering, making her the first royal to do so.

During the visit, Camilla got stuck in in the kitchen, topping the British favourite trifles with a generous serving of cream

During the visit, Camilla got stuck in in the kitchen, topping the British favourite trifles with a generous serving of cream

However some social media users noted Camilla appeared to wear the visor ‘too high’ on her head to provide adequate covering of her face.

UK-based pharmacist Navid Sole also warned a visor is not as effective as a face mask in stopping the spread of Covid-19, although it is better than wearing no face covering. 

Camilla seemed to have learned from the previous occasion and ensured the visor covered her entire face on today’s outing. 

The royal also kept the blue floral mask on under the visor to ensure maximum protection.

It comes after Camilla’s stepson Prince Edward stepped out in a plastic face shield for a visit to Surrey as research emerged suggesting they don’t work in stopping the spread of Covid-19 .  

After some hard work in the kitchen creaming the tasty sweet desserts, Camilla placed the dishes on a tray ready to be served up to the lunch club visitors

After some hard work in the kitchen creaming the tasty sweet desserts, Camilla placed the dishes on a tray ready to be served up to the lunch club visitors

The Duchess of Cornwall stood at the kitchen hatch with her latest creations waiting for them to be collection and handed out

The Duchess of Cornwall stood at the kitchen hatch with her latest creations waiting for them to be collection and handed out 

Her appearance in a visor comes a month after she first donned the plastic face covering, making her the first royal to do so.

Her appearance in a visor comes a month after she first donned the plastic face covering, making her the first royal to do so. 

Giving just a flash of her Burberry coat's stylish lining, Camilla looked delighted as she headed out today

Giving just a flash of her Burberry coat's stylish lining, Camilla looked delighted as she headed out today

Giving just a flash of her Burberry coat’s stylish lining, Camilla looked delighted as she headed out today

Camilla looked effortlessly stylish as she donned the trendy facemask and coat while waving at wellwishers

Camilla looked effortlessly stylish as she donned the trendy facemask and coat while waving at wellwishers

It comes after Camilla's stepson Prince Edward stepped out in a plastic face shield for a visit to Surrey as research emerged suggesting they don't work in stopping the spread of Covid-19 .

It comes after Camilla’s stepson Prince Edward stepped out in a plastic face shield for a visit to Surrey as research emerged suggesting they don’t work in stopping the spread of Covid-19 . 

The Earl of Wessex, 56, who lives with his wife Sophie, 55, and their children Lady Louise Windsor, 16, and James Viscount Severn, 12, at Bagshot Park, between Windsor and Guildford, visited Yvonne Arnaud Theatre yesterday. 

His engagement came as a study warned that plastic face shields allow nearly 100 per cent of tiny airborne droplets released by coronavirus-infected patients to escape through visors.

It’s been a busy week for the Duchess, who yesterday met well-wishers to visit a cancer charity Maggie’s Barts, donning a green itak print facemask.

The Duchess, who has been president of Maggie’s since 2008, looked in high spirits as she made her way into the medical facility, wearing a stylish emerald green pleated dress – to the knee – and accessorising with a matching black leather Chanel handbag. 

The Duchess of Cornwall, wearing a beautiful blue dress which complimented her floral mask, stood speaking to volunteers who overcame recent challenges during the pandemic

The Duchess of Cornwall, wearing a beautiful blue dress which complimented her floral mask, stood speaking to volunteers who overcame recent challenges during the pandemic

Large sheets of plastic had been set up to divide the tables and ensure it was safe for the lunch club visitors to attend, while they spoke with Camilla about their experiences

Large sheets of plastic had been set up to divide the tables and ensure it was safe for the lunch club visitors to attend, while they spoke with Camilla about their experiences

Volunteers spoke at length with the Duchess of Cornwall about the struggles the coronavirus pandemic posed for them and their much needed lunch club sessions

Volunteers spoke at length with the Duchess of Cornwall about the struggles the coronavirus pandemic posed for them and their much needed lunch club sessions

The royal also kept the blue floral mask on under the visor to ensure maximum protection as she also donned a black apron

The royal also kept the blue floral mask on under the visor to ensure maximum protection as she also donned a black apron

Her appearance in a visor comes a month after she first donned the plastic face covering, making her the first royal to do so. She is pictured today

Camilla seemed to have learned from the previous occasion and ensured the visor covered her entire face on today's outing. She is pictured today

Her appearance in a visor comes a month after she first donned the plastic face covering, making her the first royal to do so. Camilla seemed to have learned from the previous occasion and ensured the visor covered her entire face on today’s outing.

The Duchess of Cornwall, in her role as President, Royal Voluntary Service, wears a face shield as she serves a lunch during a visit to the Royal Voluntary Service Mill End lunch club

The Duchess of Cornwall, in her role as President, Royal Voluntary Service, wears a face shield as she serves a lunch during a visit to the Royal Voluntary Service Mill End lunch club

The mask features a green ikat print, with splashes of green and pink, and is made by seamstresses who have been supported through the Turquoise Mountain Textiles programme, which Prince Charles set up in 2016.

On her feet, looked to be a pair of smart black heels by one of the royal’s favourite brands, Sole Bliss. 

As the Duchess arrived, she was greeted by Dame Laura Lee DBE, Chief Executive of Maggie’s. Camilla first became President of Maggie’s in November 2008 after a visit to the cancer care facility in Edinburgh in July 2008.  

As well as hearing about the problems volunteers faced at the lunch club during the peak of the pandemic, Camilla helped cut up visitors food

As well as hearing about the problems volunteers faced at the lunch club during the peak of the pandemic, Camilla helped cut up visitors food 

Making the cut! Camilla helped to cut the food at the Mill End lunch club today as she served the elderly

Making the cut! Camilla helped to cut the food at the Mill End lunch club today as she served the elderly 

During her visit, Camilla sat down with Doris Winfield, 86, and listened to her story while sipping on a hot drink

During her visit, Camilla sat down with Doris Winfield, 86, and listened to her story while sipping on a hot drink 

Matching! Camilla made sure her dress matched her mask as she attended the Mill End lunch club today

Matching! Camilla made sure her dress matched her mask as she attended the Mill End lunch club today

The Duchess of Cornwall (centre) speaks to guest at the Mill End lunch club who sat between plastic screens to keep Covid-safe

The Duchess of Cornwall (centre) speaks to guest at the Mill End lunch club who sat between plastic screens to keep Covid-safe

Camilla looked delighted in the Burberry coat and blue dress, which she complemented with a blue dress and crocodile print-style clutch

Camilla looked delighted in the Burberry coat and blue dress, which she complemented with a blue dress and crocodile print-style clutch

Camilla looked delighted in the Burberry coat and blue dress, which she complemented with a blue dress and crocodile print-style clutch

Camilla sported a light black mascara around her eyes and a gentle natural foundation as she headed out today

Camilla sported a light black mascara around her eyes and a gentle natural foundation as she headed out today

Camilla channelled a classic fashion look today as she headed out to meet the Royal Volunteer Service

Camilla channelled a classic fashion look today as she headed out to meet the Royal Volunteer Service

Revealed: Why plastic face shields DON’T work unless used in combination with other safety measures

In a scramble to find ways to protect people from catching the coronavirus, masks, goggles, visors and gloves have all been touted as possible layers of protection.

Some people have even been seen with homemade attempts, such as wearing lunchboxes or water bottles over their faces.

But do visors work?

Some research has shown that people are at risk of becoming more seriously ill with COVID-19 if they receive a larger ‘viral load’ – the first dose of viruses that they are infected with.

Epidemiologist Dr Eli Perencevich and a team of scientists at the University of Iowa said a visor could reduce the amount of virus someone inhaled by up to 92 per cent form 2m away from the source.

They said: ‘Face shields… should be included as part of strategies to safely and significantly reduce transmission in the community setting.’

Dr Robert Glatter, a doctor at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said that early data was ‘promising’.

But research carried out before the pandemic does not show any clear benefits of using visors on their own, other scientists say.

A study by the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) done in 2016 found there is no proof to back up claims that face shields work on their own.

He said viruses or bacteria could come in through around the edges of the visor and still cause infection — and said they should only be used in addition to other PPE.

Lawrence Young, a virologist and oncologist, University of Warwick, told MailOnline: ‘I don’t know of any systematic studies properly evaluating the benefits of face shields.’

He noted an ‘interesting’ review led by the University of Hong which comprehensively explored the different types of facial protection measures, including masks.

The team highlighted the fact that ‘strong evidence is lacking in terms of the effectiveness of face shields against the transmission of viral respiratory diseases’.

Writing in the journal Oral Diseases, the team add: ‘Because most face shields do not form a tight seal around the side of the face and chin area, they do not offer protection against aerosols leaking in from the margins of the face shields.’

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