Downcast King Charles makes unexpected appearance as Camilla gives health update

King Charles was seen driving his car near the Sandringham estate today as he prepares to go into hospital this week for corrective treatment for an enlarged prostate

King Charles driving near Sandringham today (Paul Marriott)

King Charles has been spotted driving his car near Sandringham today as he prepares to go to hospital this week for treatment.

The monarch was seen driving his electric Audi near his estate in Norfolk, where he has been staying since the weekend as he awaits a corrective procedure for an enlarged prostate. Charles gripped the wheel wearing thick green gloves and appeared to be wearing a casual walking jacket. He flew back from Scotland with Queen Camilla on Friday and headed to his Sandringham estate. The sighting came as his wife Camilla offered a health update on the King, while out and about on engagements today.

The King travelled to Sandringham on Friday and has been there ever since (Paul Marriott)

Even though Charles is resting ahead of his procedure and will take time out from public life after, Camilla has been showing its business as normal and today visited Swindon, where she dropped in on Deacon and Sons, a 175-year-old family-run jewellery shop.

While out and about today, Camilla met 86-year-old Jessie Jackson, from Swindon, who was among a group who gathered outside the jewellery shop to catch a glimpse of the Queen. Ms Jackson said she shook the Queen’s hand and asked her how Charles was doing, with Camilla telling her he was ‘fine’.

Camilla thanked her for asking and Ms Jackson added: “She’s lovely.” Nicky Jackson, 48, who accompanied Ms Jackson, added: “She asked how Charles was. He’s fine. We didn’t ask about Kate. We forgot about poor Kate.” She added: “She’s a big royalist this one (Jessie), so she was very excited.”

Queen Camilla during engagements in Swindon today(Getty Images)

Charles’ procedure comes as the Princess of Wales remains in hospital after undergoing abdominal surgery. Kate is not expected to carry out official engagements until after Easter. Buckingham Palace announced the news about the King’s health last Wednesday just 90 minutes after Kensington Palace said Kate was in hospital. On Sunday Charles’ former sister-in-law, Sarah, Duchess of York was confirmed to have been diagnosed with skin cancer.

Earlier today, Camilla toured a domestic violence refuge to mark the service’s 50th anniversary. She met staff, volunteers and families at Swindon Domestic Abuse Support Service (SDASS). SDASS, which was founded in 1974 as Swindon Women’s Aid, is one of the few purpose-built refuges in the UK offering fully self-contained accommodation.

Camilla thanked a crowd of attendees for working to “obliterate abuse altogether”. She said: “Before I go, I wish you all a very happy 50th birthday, (I would like) to say a huge thank you for the brilliant job you’re doing here for domestic abuse. I’ve visited a lot of refuges over the years, but I can see there’s something very special here, you’re doing such a wonderful job in so many walks of life, you seem to be getting into everywhere, which is what is needed. It’s not just looking after victims and the children – it’s getting into schools, teaching young people, teaching respect.

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