Queen Camilla showed her love of the Harry Potter series as she made a surprise appearance at the Charleston Festival in Firle, Sussex. 

The royal, 76, arrived on Thursday morning carrying a large transparent umbrella to face the rainy weather, before giving a speech at the ‘Power of Reading’ event. 

The event, which also features children’s laureate Joseph Coelho, Sir Lenny Henry, Jacqueline Wilson, Francesca Simon and Jenny Agutter, had promised on its website that a ‘very special surprise guest’ would be attending. 

The audience was delighted when they unexpectedly found themselves in royal company. 

While speaking to excited schoolchildren, Camilla was asked which fictional place she would like to travel to and why. 

Queen Camilla, patron of the Charleston Trust, gave a speech during a surprise appearance at the Sussex festival on Thursday

The royal, 76, arrived carrying a large transparent umbrella and a neutral rain mac to face the weather

The royal, 76, arrived carrying a large transparent umbrella and a neutral rain mac to face the weather 

Camilla was all smiles for the occasion, despite the rain for the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Camilla was all smiles for the occasion, despite the rain for the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Queen Camilla was welcomed to the event by actress Jenny Agutter for the 'Power of Reading' event, which celebrates the power of books and reading for children and young people

Queen Camilla was welcomed to the event by actress Jenny Agutter for the ‘Power of Reading’ event, which celebrates the power of books and reading for children and young people

Queen Camilla is patron of the Charleston Trust but her appearance today was a surprise for guests

Queen Camilla is patron of the Charleston Trust but her appearance today was a surprise for guests

Queen Camilla also met with British actor and comedian Lenny Henry (R) during the surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Queen Camilla also met with British actor and comedian Lenny Henry (R) during the surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

The Queen Consort was pictured chatting with other speakers at the event before taking to the stage

The Queen Consort was pictured chatting with other speakers at the event before taking to the stage

The royal gave a speech at the 'Power of Reading' event, which celebrated the power of books and reading for children and young people

The royal gave a speech at the ‘Power of Reading’ event, which celebrated the power of books and reading for children and young people

Queen Camilla wore a vibrant blue dress with an eye-catching feather print for the occasion

Queen Camilla wore a vibrant blue dress with an eye-catching feather print for the occasion

The royal teamed her patterned dress with an elegant matching green scarf as she addressed the crowds

The royal teamed her patterned dress with an elegant matching green scarf as she addressed the crowds

The popular royal delighted audiences with her surprise appearance for opening session of the Charleston Festival, telling the crowd that she believes we should all be aiming for five minutes reading a day

The popular royal delighted audiences with her surprise appearance for opening session of the Charleston Festival, telling the crowd that she believes we should all be aiming for five minutes reading a day

(L-R) Author Joseph Coelho, author Francesca Simon, novelist Jacqueline Wilson and actor and comedian Sir Lenny Henry sat on stage as Camilla took to the stand for a special speech

(L-R) Author Joseph Coelho, author Francesca Simon, novelist Jacqueline Wilson and actor and comedian Sir Lenny Henry sat on stage as Camilla took to the stand for a special speech 

The four guest speakers shared their passion for reading with the audience during the opening session of the Charleston Festival

The four guest speakers shared their passion for reading with the audience during the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Actor and comedian Sir Lenny Henry took to the stage to read an extract from The Cat In The Hat

Actor and comedian Sir Lenny Henry took to the stage to read an extract from The Cat In The Hat

The audience was delighted when they unexpectedly found themselves in royal company

The audience was delighted when they unexpectedly found themselves in royal company

The Queen was quick to respond that she would love to go to Hogwarts in the Harry Potter series. 

She responded, as reported in The Argus paper: ‘One place I think I’d love to go is Hogwarts. 

‘I’d like to jump on the Express and sit in that wonderful hall and pick a house. I’d like to look at Dumbledore and Hagrid and Snape and the food flying about, I think it would be a magical experience.’ 

Camilla looked elegant in an eye-catching green dress with a peacock feather pattern and matching green scarf. 

She added a light beige coat for the surprise appearance, which was met with rainy weather.  

Book-lover Camilla was also spotted chatting to comedian Lenny Henry and children’s author Jacqueline Wilson.

The audience were in for a treat with the royal visit, and hearing from the likes of Tracy Beaker author Jacqueline Wilson and Francesca Simon, who wrote Horrid Henry.  

The Charleston Trust festival aims to bring together today’s most exciting artists, thinkers and changemakers to engage with art and ideas.  

Event organisers had promised on its website that a 'very special surprise guest' would be attending prior to the event

Event organisers had promised on its website that a ‘very special surprise guest’ would be attending prior to the event 

Queen Camilla was in high spirits as she shook hands with guests during the literary event

Queen Camilla was in high spirits as she shook hands with guests during the literary event

The royal, who has always been very vocal about her passion for reading, watched the speakers on stage, cheering them on with the other guests

The royal, who has always been very vocal about her passion for reading, watched the speakers on stage, cheering them on with the other guests

During the event, Queen Camilla was handed a microphone to ask a question to the speaker on stage

During the event, Queen Camilla was handed a microphone to ask a question to the speaker on stage 

 Camilla, who is patron of the Charleston Trust, joined the opening event the ‘Power of Reading’, for which tickets cost between £10 and £25. 

It aims to celebrate the power of books and reading for children and young people – something which the Queen has tirelessly shown commitment for. 

Camilla is an avid reader, patron of a number of literary organisations and has been supporting the children’s writing competition since 2015. 

Only in March she endorsed new research that said five minutes of reading a day is as valuable to health and wellbeing as walking 10,000 steps and eating five portions of fruit and vegetables. 

Queen Camilla received flowers from a school child at the the opening session of the Charleston Festival

 Queen Camilla received flowers from a school child at the the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Guests of the literary event, including a number of schoolchildren, were honoured to meet with Queen Camilla during her surprise appearance

Guests of the literary event, including a number of schoolchildren, were honoured to meet with Queen Camilla during her surprise appearance 

After the event, Camilla toured the studio at Charleston House, taking in its impressive artwork

After the event, Camilla toured the studio at Charleston House, taking in its impressive artwork

Queen Camilla looked elegant with her jewel-toned green scarf wrapped around her shoulders as a shawl

Queen Camilla looked elegant with her jewel-toned green scarf wrapped around her shoulders as a shawl 

The royal also wore a series of bracelets on her wrist in blue tones that matched her outfit

The royal also wore a series of bracelets on her wrist in blue tones that matched her outfit

Queen Camilla smiles during a tour of the studio at Charleston House after a surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Queen Camilla smiles during a tour of the studio at Charleston House after a surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Queen Camilla leaves in the rain after a surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

Queen Camilla leaves in the rain after a surprise appearance at the opening session of the Charleston Festival

In a speech to mark the third anniversary of her book club, The Queen’s Reading Room, as well as its first as a registered charity, Her Majesty said: ‘In addition to our five a day and our 10,000 steps, we should all be aiming for at least 5 minutes of reading every day for invaluable benefits for brain health and mental well-being.

‘Just as we always suspected, books are good for us – and now science is proving us right!’

Camilla has previously told how her love of reading began as a child when her father would read bedtime stories to her. 

She explained how her father Bruce Shand, an avid reader, used to read books to her and her siblings before their bedtime.

‘When we were children at night he would sit at the bottom of our beds and read us stories, every sort of story you could imagine,’ she recounted, as she held a reception at Buckingham Palace for the BBC’s 500 Words in February. 

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