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Camilla's brother Mark Shand dies after New York fall

The brother of the Duchess of Cornwall - Mark Shand - has died following a fall in New York, Clarence House has confirmed.

Mark Shand photographed here with Prince Charles in 2013. Credit: Press Association

A statement reads: "It is with deep sadness that we have to confirm that The Duchess of Cornwall's brother, Mark Shand, has today passed away in New York.

"Mr Shand died in hospital as a result of a serious head injury which he sustained during a fall last night. The Duchess, The Prince of Wales and all her family members are utterly devastated by this sudden and tragic loss.

"Mark Shand was a man of extraordinary vitality, a tireless campaigner and conservationist whose incredible work through The Elephant Family and beyond remained his focus right up until his death."

Mark Shand: Travel writer and conservationist

Mark Shand - the brother of the Duchess of Cornwall - has died after suffering a serious head injury following a fall in New York.

Mark Shand suffered a serious head injury following a fall in New York. Credit: AP

Mr Shand was a travel writer and the chairman of Elephant Family, which aims to save the endangered Asian elephant from extinction in the wild.

He had written several books about his travels, including 'Queen of the Elephants' and its accompanying BBC documentary.

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Mark Shand 'had been at charity auction on night of fall'

The 62-year-old brother of the Duchess of Cornwall is in a New York hospital with a serious head injury after a fall in the city.

Mark Shand photographed with his sister the Duchess of Cornwall at a charity event in 2010. Credit: Press Association

The Daily Mirror reports that Mr Shand had been attending a charity auction at Sotherby's in New York on the night of the fall. He was later at an after party for the event, when he stepped outside for a cigarette and slipped and hit his head on the pavement.

Camilla's brother suffers serious head injury in fall

The brother of the Duchess of Cornwall - Mark Shand - has been taken to hospital with a serious head injury following a fall in New York.

Camilla's brother Mark Shand (in a blue shirt) with the Prince of Wales. Credit: Press Association

A Clarence House spokesman said: "The Duchess of Cornwall's brother, Mark Shand, has been taken to a New York hospital after falling and sustaining a serious head injury.

The Duchess, her family and The Prince of Wales are clearly deeply concerned and are being kept closely informed."

Duchess of Cornwall backs efforts to stamp out FGM

The Duchess of Cornwall has given her backing to efforts to stamp out female genital mutilation (FGM), according to a leading campaigner.

The Duchess of Cornwall (right) talks with a guest during a reception for the Southbank Centre's Women of the World festival Credit: Press Association

Anti-FGM charity founder Nimco Ali said Camilla gave the "royal seal of approval" during a reception for the Southbank Centre's Women of the World festival, which starts next month.

Actress Natascha McElhone (left) speaks with the Duchess of Cornwall during a reception for the Southbank Centre's Women of the World Credit: Press Association

The co-founder of the Daughters of Eve charity said: "Camilla said she thinks the campaign is terrific and she heard about the stuff we're doing. She said she was impressed with the work and wanted more information about the campaign."

Camilla's support comes after the Equality and Human Rights Commission today wrote to Norman Baker, the minister responsible for the Government's strategy to combat FGM.

In the letter to the minister, the EHRC expressed concern that the £100,000 fund identified for charities to raise awareness about FGM is inadequate.

Read: Government to tackle female genital mutilation

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Queen & Camilla decorate tree with royal baubles

The Queen and the Duchess of Cornwall have helped to decorate a Christmas tree with a pair of specially-made royal baubles, to mark the opening of Barnardo's new headquarters.

The Queen and the Duchess of Cornwall got in the festive spirit today when they helped decorate a Christmas tree - with a pair of royal baubles.
The Queen and Duchess of Cornwall got in the festive spirit when they helped decorate a Christmas tree. Credit: PA

The Queen's decoration was made of red velvet, covered with gold coloured thread and featured her cypher below a crown and a floral pattern around its edge.

Her daughter-in-law's had a similar design, but was made from blue velvet and featured her cypher surrounded by a ring of white beads.

The specially-made royal trinkets hung on the tree by the Queen and Camilla.
The specially-made royal trinkets hung on the tree by the Queen and Camilla. Credit: PA

The Queen made sure she reached up to find a good spot for her festive decoration on the tree at the leading children's charity's new multi-million pound purpose-built building headquarters in Barkingside, East London.

Siblings Skye, aged eight, and seven-year-old Summer, who are supported by a Barnardo's children's centre in Essex, presented the baubles to the royal pair and also gave them Christmas stockings filled with tree decorations from the Barnardo's shop.

Camilla supports Sri Lanka women and children's groups

The Duchess of Cornwall has spent the final day of the eleven-day royal tour visiting charities that help women and children in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

The Duchess of Cornwall during a visit to the Women in need centre in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The Duchess of Cornwall during a visit to the Women in Need centre in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Credit: PA

Camilla visited the Home Start centre, which was funded by Leeds City Council to help educate and help local mothers and their children, and the Women in Need centre, also in the Capital.

The Duchess of Cornwall during a visit to the Home Start centre, which was funded by Leeds City Council.
The Duchess of Cornwall during a visit to the Home Start centre, which was funded by Leeds City Council. Credit: PA

Charles and Camilla began their trip in India, before visiting Sri Lanka, where the prince yesterday opened the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, which has been overshadowed by accusations that the host nation's regime committed human rights abuses when it ended a civil war.

Read: Camilla: 'Charles the most difficult person to buy for'

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