Inside the Old Pro’s Paradise – the nursing home that Meghan visited

It welcomed a star-studded visitor in the form of Meghan Markle on Tuesday but Brinsworth House is already home to plenty of stars of its own.

Affectionately known as the Old Pros’ Paradise – the house in Twickenham is run and managed by the Royal Variety Charity and is home exclusively to ex-entertainers

The home accommodates up to 36 residents who are cared for by a dedicated team of nurses and care assistants. 

Among famous entertainers who have been cared for at the residential home are Sir Norman Wisdom, Dame Thora Hird and EastEnders actor Leslie Grantham. 

The Duchess of Sussex today visited Brinsworth House in Twickenham which is a care home catering for ex-entertainers 

The Duchess of Sussex today visited Brinsworth House in Twickenham which is a care home catering for ex-entertainers 

The Duchess of Sussex today visited Brinsworth House in Twickenham which is a care home catering for ex-entertainers 

Built in 1850, the care home, pictured in a file image, has a number of lounges, a bar area, library, restaurant, television rooms, a hair salon - and even its own theatre

Built in 1850, the care home, pictured in a file image, has a number of lounges, a bar area, library, restaurant, television rooms, a hair salon - and even its own theatre

Built in 1850, the care home, pictured in a file image, has a number of lounges, a bar area, library, restaurant, television rooms, a hair salon – and even its own theatre

Also among the departed is English actress Emily Perry, who passed in 2008, who is most famous for her role as Dame Edna Everidge’s bridesmaid.

Australian DJ Alan ‘Fluff’ Freeman and  Comedian Charlie Drake also spent their final years at the home before they both died in 2006. 

Current residents include Mona Hammond, who played Blossom Jackson in EastEnders, and 1970s star Richard O’Sullivan. 

Former magician Reg Brigden was on hand to meet the Duchess of Sussex today. 

Former residents include Dame Thora Hird, who passed away in 2003, and was most famous for her role as Edie in Last of the Summer Wine 

Former residents include Dame Thora Hird, who passed away in 2003, and was most famous for her role as Edie in Last of the Summer Wine 

Former residents include Dame Thora Hird, who passed away in 2003, and was most famous for her role as Edie in Last of the Summer Wine 

Leslie Gantham who famously played Dirty Den in EastEnders stayed there until his death in June

Leslie Gantham who famously played Dirty Den in EastEnders stayed there until his death in June

Actor Norman Wisdom lived there until his death in 2010

Actor Norman Wisdom lived there until his death in 2010

Leslie Gantham (left) who famously played Dirty Den in EastEnders stayed there until his death in June and actor Norman Wisdom until 2010

Famous spouses have also taken up residence with Bruce Forsyth's ex-wife Penny spending her final years at the home until her death last year

Famous spouses have also taken up residence with Bruce Forsyth's ex-wife Penny spending her final years at the home until her death last year

Famous spouses have also taken up residence with Bruce Forsyth’s ex-wife Penny spending her final years at the home until her death last year

Mr Brigden, who took up performing magic in his retirement, once performed at Prince William and Prince Harry’s birthday parties.

Famous spouses have also taken up residence with Bruce Forsyth’s ex-wife Penny spending her final years at the home until her death last year.   

Built in 1850, the care home has a number of lounges, a bar area, library, restaurant, television rooms, a hair salon – and even its own theatre. 

The house is decorated throughout to emphasise its theatrical lineage, representing the many retired artists and entertainers who have been supported by the Royal Variety Charity.

Australian DJ Alan 'Fluff' Freeman called the house his home until 2006

Australian DJ Alan 'Fluff' Freeman called the house his home until 2006

Charlie Drake also spent their final years at the home before they both died

Charlie Drake also spent their final years at the home before they both died

Australian DJ Alan ‘Fluff’ Freeman (left) and Comedian Charlie Drake also spent their final years at the home before they both died in 2006 

One current resident is actress Mona Hammond, who is seen here with the Duchess of Cornwall in March 

One current resident is actress Mona Hammond, who is seen here with the Duchess of Cornwall in March 

One current resident is actress Mona Hammond, who is seen here with the Duchess of Cornwall in March 

Also among the departed is English actress Emily Perry, who passed in 2008, who is most famous for her role as Dame Edna Everidge's bridesmaid

Also among the departed is English actress Emily Perry, who passed in 2008, who is most famous for her role as Dame Edna Everidge's bridesmaid

Actor Richard O'Sullivan (seen in 1975) who was present to meet the Duchess today

Actor Richard O'Sullivan (seen in 1975) who was present to meet the Duchess today

Also among the departed is English actress Emily Perry, who passed in 2008, who is most famous for her role as Dame Edna Everidge’s (seen together left) bridesmaid while actor Richard O’Sullivan (seen in 1975 right) who was present to meet the Duchess today

The rooms are named after entertainers who pay a sponsorship fee to have their names painted on the doors, for example The Norman Wisdom Room. 

The BBC reported back in 2007 that staying at Brinsworth costs £600 per week for a residential room and £750 for nursing care, revealing that the house costs £1.25m annually to run. 

Previous royal visits to Brinsworth House include Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1990 and The Prince of Wales in 2002.

The visit has been designed to allow Meghan, who was starring in the hit US television drama Suits when she met Harry but gave up her career to marry him, to see first-hand how the charity cares for those who have spent their lives working in the entertainment industry.  

The Duchess of Sussex greets former magician Reg Brigden, pictured, on her visit to Brinsworth House. Mr Brigden, who took up performing magic in his retirement, once performed at Prince William and Prince Harry's birthday parties

The Duchess of Sussex greets former magician Reg Brigden, pictured, on her visit to Brinsworth House. Mr Brigden, who took up performing magic in his retirement, once performed at Prince William and Prince Harry's birthday parties

The Duchess of Sussex greets former magician Reg Brigden, pictured, on her visit to Brinsworth House. Mr Brigden, who took up performing magic in his retirement, once performed at Prince William and Prince Harry’s birthday parties

Previous royal visits to Brinsworth House include Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1990 and The Prince of Wales in 2002. Pictured, Prince Charles joking with Jim Davidson and Lea Kristenson during his visit to the house 

Previous royal visits to Brinsworth House include Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1990 and The Prince of Wales in 2002. Pictured, Prince Charles joking with Jim Davidson and Lea Kristenson during his visit to the house 

Previous royal visits to Brinsworth House include Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in 1990 and The Prince of Wales in 2002. Pictured, Prince Charles joking with Jim Davidson and Lea Kristenson during his visit to the house 

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