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Duchess of Cornwall comforts Richard E. Grant over late wife

The actor's wife Joan Washington passed away earlier this year

The Duchess of Cornwall offered her support to Richard E. Grant following the death of his wife, Joan Washington, last month as she met the actor in Clarence House.

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The Duchess welcomed members of the acting and writing world as she hosted a reception to thank those who supported her Reading Room initiative. During the event, Camilla put an arm around the Everybody's Talking About Jamie star and said that his late wife would be "looking down" on him.

Following the event, Richard said: "The Duchess knew my wife very well, who died last month. She was talking about her. She was very supportive."

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He also had high praise for the initiative, as he continued: "I grew up in a country where there was no television service, so I have been an avid reader since I was four years old.

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"Lockdown I think encouraged or allowed people to read much more than in normal circumstances. Reading has been the gateway of everything I have known or liked in life. And it's cheaper than anything."

Other guests at the event included Dame Judi Dench, Hilary Mantel, Delia Owens, Tom Stoppard, Elif Shafak, William Boyd, Philippa Gregory, Robert Harris, Anthony Horowitz and Charles Dance.

The Duchess also invited her daughter, Laura Lopes to the event, who was accompanied by her husband and their children.

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The Duchess was joined by guests from the acting and writing worlds

Last month, Richard opened up about the support that Prince Charles had given him following Joan's death from stage-four lung cancer.

Writing in the Daily Mail, he penned: "Prince Charles came to see 'The Colonel' [a nickname for his wife] last month, sat beside her, took her hand and said, 'It's been an absolute honour to have known you, Joan' to which she instantly quipped, 'I'm STILL here.' Which broke the ice and made all three of us cackle."

He added: "Astonishingly, unlike me, she's never been star struck and possessed the innate gift of speaking to everyone of any age or status as her equal."

Joan was well-known in the film industry and worked as a vocal and dialect coach for almost 40 years. Some of her high-profile clients and friends included Jessica Chastain, Anne Hathaway, Emma Stone and Vanessa Redgrave.

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Prince Charles also gave his support to the actor

She and Richard married were married for 35 years and together, they shared one daughter, Olivia, and Joan's son, Tom.

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The couple met at the Actors Centre in London back in 1982 and struck up a romance after Joan agreed to give the Withnail and I star private vocal lessons. Richard then proposed to Joan at Heathrow airport, and the couple married soon after in 1986 at a registry office.

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