Royal baby: Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton gives birth to a son - follow our live blog

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  • KATE Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, has given birth to a boy.

10:54pm

Well, that was an interesting day. History in the making. A new king in waiting. 

Blackpool Citizen: 'I still can't believe I made William and Kate's wedding cake'

10:51pm

There will be no further updates on Royal baby until the morning, Buckingham Palace say. 

10:46pm

Blackpool Citizen:

10:41pm

And one more...

Blackpool Citizen:

10:39pm

Some of tomorrow's front pages...and the headline is...

Blackpool Citizen: Blackpool Citizen:

10:37pm

Prince of Wales's full statement: "Both my wife and I are overjoyed at the arrival of my first grandchild. It is an incredibly special moment for William and Catherine and we are so thrilled for them on the birth of their baby boy.

"Grandparenthood is a unique moment in anyone's life, as countless kind people have told me in recent months, so I am enormously proud and happy to be a grandfather for the first time and we are eagerly looking forward to seeing the baby in the near future."

10:23pm

 President Obama: Michelle & I are so pleased to congratulate Duke & Duchess on joyous occasion of birth of their first child 

Blackpool Citizen: obama.jpg

10:23pm

Mood outside Buckingham Palace is one of elation with some saying it's like a New Year's Eve celebration.

10:20pm

Barack Obama says he's delighted. 

10:19pm

London Eye lit up red, white and blue

Blackpool Citizen:

10:16pm

Gun salutes will sound across London tomorrow to mark the birth of the royal baby.

The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery and the Honourable Artillery Company will both carry out the ceremonial salutes in honour of the new addition to the Royal Family.

10:12pm

Blackpool Citizen: Disaster banner royal baby.jpg for the homepageThe scene outside Buckingham Palace

10:09pm

The doors to the hospital close - highly unlikely we'll see William tonight. 

10:03pm

Take part in our poll

9:55pm

Duke of Cambridge says "we could not be happier" 

9:46pm

The birth of the baby prince means the monarchy has three generations of heirs to the throne for the first time since 1894.

9:43pm

Bishop of Worcester said: “I was delighted to hear about the birth of a son for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. This is good news not only for the couple and the Royal Family, but for the whole nation and the Commonwealth. The young prince and his parents will be very much in my prayers. May God bless them all very richly now and in the future.”

9:39pm

The party starts outside Buckingham Palace. 

Blackpool Citizen:

9:39pm

Queen's gynaecologist Marcus Setchell said "wonderful baby, beautiful baby" as he left the Lindo Wing at around 9.20pm alongside other members of the medical team.

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9:34pm

William will stay the night at the hospital. 

9:33pm

Charles: We're eagerly waiting to see the new baby in the near future

9:32pm

Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: "Congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on their new arrival."

9:24pm

William expected shortly. We're not sure if he'll speak. 

9:24pm

Labour Leader Ed Miliband added: "Many congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. I wish them and their son all happiness and good health."

9:24pm

Archbishop of Canterbury the Most Rev Justin Welby was one of the first to speak of his joy on Twitter.

"Delighted for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as they welcome their baby boy. May God bless them all with love, health and happiness," he said.

9:20pm

BT tower lights up with "It's a boy" 

Blackpool Citizen:

9:04pm

Blackpool Citizen: The official press release

9:03pm

"They'll make wonderful parents" - David Cameron

9:01pm

David Cameron - the whole country will celebrate. 

Blackpool Citizen: Southfields headteacher is paid more than David Cameron

8:59pm

We may see William on hospital steps tonight. 

8:59pm

Queen and Prince Philip - we're delighted. 

8:57pm

The Prince of Wales said that he was "enormously proud and happy to be a grandfather for the first time", adding that it was "an incredibly special moment for William and Catherine".

8:56pm

Prince of Wales - I'm enormously proud to be a grandfather. 

Blackpool Citizen: Prince Charles at JFS

8:56pm

London Town crier makes official announcement on steps of hospital. 

8:56pm

The new royal baby is the first Prince of Cambridge to be born for more than 190 years.

The last was Prince George of Cambridge, a grandson of George III and the only son of Prince Adolphus Frederick, the 1st Duke of Cambridge.

8:50pm

The official announcement! 

Blackpool Citizen:

8:49pm

The new royal baby will be the Queen's third great-grandchild and is destined to be crowned monarch.

He will be the 43rd sovereign since William the Conqueror if, as expected, it follows reigns by the Prince of Wales then William.

8:49pm

Soon after the palace announcement was made, a notice giving details about the baby - the third-in-line to the throne - left St Mary's Hospital in London by car for Buckingham Palace.

It has been signed by the Queen's former gynaecologist Marcus Setchell, who led the medical team that delivered Kate's baby.

The notice will be placed on an easel in the palace's forecourt just like the announcement of William's birth on June 21, 1982, a traditional element of theatre in marked contrast to the modern age of emails and Twitter.

8:48pm

A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: "The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are delighted at the news."

8:48pm

Formal announcement now being placed on easel at Buckingham Palace

8:48pm

Kensington Palace said in a statement: "Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge was safely delivered of a son at 4.24pm. The baby weighs 8lbs 6oz. The Duke of Cambridge was present for the birth.

"The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, Prince Harry and members of both families have been informed and are delighted with the news. Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well and will remain in hospital overnight."

A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: "The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are delighted at the news."

8:48pm

Clarence House says mother and son are "doing well" 

8:47pm

Duchess of Cambridge will spend night at hospital. 

8:46pm

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are delighted at news, says Palace spokesman. 

8:43pm

Birth was natural. 

8:40pm

People are opening champagne outside the hospital. 

8:40pm

Prince William has called the Queen and Prince Charles ahead of the announcement. 

8:38pm

There are cheers around London. History in the making. 

8:37pm

Buckingham Palace says baby name will be announced later. 

8:31pm

We have a future king. 

8:30pm

8lbs 6oz

8:30pm

It's a boy. Born 4.24pm

8:29pm

Speculation announcement is significant. 

8:27pm

Announcement expected in next few minutes. 

8:22pm

The change in the way the baby arrival will be announced has sparked speculation something significant has happened. 

8:18pm

8:10pm

When asked if there was any news, Prince Charles tells reporters "You'll hear before I do." 

Blackpool Citizen: Prince Charles will be visiting Malmesbury on November 21

8:07pm

Kensington Palace announces a formal press release will be issued when the baby is born. 

8:03pm

Prince William is expected to take the two weeks' paid leave offered by the Ministry of Defence.

Blackpool Citizen: Prince William

7:55pm

Prince Charles has left his final engagement for the day in Yorkshire. 

7:52pm

It is understood that if the Royal baby arrives after 11pm tonight, the first person to be notified will be the Queen  when she awakes tomorrow morning and then the public announcement will be made. 

5:22pm

The Duchess of Cambridge has now been in labour for at least eleven hours

5:02pm

Just look at the crowds outside Royal hospital

4:52pm

Royal baby - live webcam!

4:48pm

Latest picture - members of the public wait outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

4:47pm

As the world waits to find out if Kate and William's first child is a boy or a girl, the media frenzy surrounding the royal birth has gone into overdrive as it tops news agendas across the globe.


The impending birth dominated the world's media from the moment the Duchess of Cambridge's labour was announced at 7.30am.


Social networks and blogs were swiftly awash with discussion as websites and TV stations around the world turned their focus on to the main event.


Newspaper websites from France to Australia brought the royal birth to the top of their home pages.


As the rest of the world woke up, news broadcasters and websites in the United States also began presenting coverage.


When not reporting on the birth, American news channel CNN showed live footage from a webcam outside St Mary's Hospital in London at the bottom of the screen, while ABC News displayed a live feed.


The Washington Post offered readers an online "royal baby name generator" and the New York Times also went big on the birth.

Meanwhile, hundreds of lenses were trained on the entrance to the hospital's Lindo Wing, outside which the world's media has been camped in anticipation of the new arrival for a number of weeks.


With the long wait almost over, photographers were poised to capture the first images of the infant.


The subject accounted for seven of the top 10 trending topics on Twitter within a couple of hours.

4:38pm

4:25pm

A close friend of Prince William spoke of his excitement ahead of the birth of the Duke and Duchess's first child as he arrived back from what is believed to be the first recorded kayak crossing of the North Sea between Britain and Norway.
Adventurer Oliver Hicks, 31, said he was looking forward to being introduced to the infant after battling 7ft waves on the 200-mile mission with fellow rower Patrick Winterton.
Mr Hicks, who attended the royal wedding and was greeted by the Prince when he became the youngest person to row solo from America to Britain aged 23, said: "I was very keen to find out whether William and Kate's baby had arrived on making landfall.
"It was very exciting to hear the baby is now on its way as we landed back in the UK. It is such great - and very happy - news.
"I hope it all goes smoothly and wonder if the little one will be like William or Kate.
"I look forward to meeting the nipper in due course."

4:23pm

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4:10pm

The Prince of Wales joked today about becoming a grandparent for the first time as he said: "I'm very grateful indeed for the kind wishes for my rather slowly-approaching grandfatherhood."


Charles was wished luck with the arrival of his impending grandchild as he visited an abattoir in Yorkshire.


He said: "Some of you may realise that with grandfatherhood comes, in four months' time, old age pensionerhood."


But he added that he hoped he had a long shelf-life.


Charles made the comments at Dovecote Park food processing plant near Pontefract, West Yorkshire, after its owner Richard Canvin told him: "We'd like to wish you a speedy and safe arrival of your first grandchild."

Blackpool Citizen:

4:00pm

The Wall Street Journal's take on the Royal baby

3:56pm

3:50pm

The Queen returns to London from Windsor Castle

Blackpool Citizen: The Queen on her last visit to the region.

 

3:48pm

TV presenter and adventurer Ben Fogle's pregnant sister Tamara is also in the Lindo Wing.


She has not had her baby yet.


Fogle said: "It is a very exciting time, which I suppose is easy for the husband to say.


"We don't have to go through the pain."

Blackpool Citizen:

3:19pm

Media continue to wait outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London

Blackpool Citizen:

3:17pm

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2:31pm

Well wisher Teba Diatta holds a cake outside St Mary's Hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

2:30pm

Well wishers outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospita

Blackpool Citizen:

2:24pm

A host of celebrities shared the nation's excitement.

Former Spice Girl Melanie Brown took to Twitter writing: "Whoop whoop the royal baby is comming (sic) " while Kelly Osbourne wrote: "Its all so exciting The Royal Baby is on the way!"

Meanwhile, actress Joan Collins predicted the Duke and Duchess's first-born would be a princess, adding: "I bet it's a girl!

And singer Lily Allen joked: "The Duchess of Cambridge has shed half of her baby weight."

Blackpool Citizen: joan collins web.jpg

 

 

2:18pm

The Prince of Wales arrived at the National Railway Museum in York by steam train as he began his two-day visit to Yorkshire today.


As he awaited news of the birth of his first grandchild, Charles stepped off the Royal Carriage through clouds of steam, to applause and cheers from the crowd.

Blackpool Citizen:

2:17pm

A young girl looks-on as Royal well wishers pose in Union flag themed jackets outside Buckingham Palace

Blackpool Citizen:

2:15pm

Royal well wishers Sarah Haggie and Fi Thompson  pose in Union flag themed jackets outside Buckingham Palace 

Blackpool Citizen:

 

2:13pm

Dame Helen Mirren has said it would be "very interesting" if the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge named their first child Diana.


The actress, who won an Oscar for her lead role in 2006 film The Queen, claimed Kate would feel uneasy about the attention given to her pregnancy.


"That's weird isn't it, everyone knowing you're in labour," she said. "That must be so uncomfortable."


Dame Helen said it would be "great" if the baby was a girl because "we need more Queens in our life".


When asked what she thought about the name Diana for a girl - after William's mother - she replied: "I wonder if they'll go there. That would be interesting, wouldn't it? That would be very interesting."


She went on: "Her second name will be Elizabeth without a doubt."
Dame Helen said Queen Caroline "would work" - after Kate's mother Carole - while she also liked Charlotte and Victoria.

"It would be nice to have one of those ancient Anglo-Saxon names," she added.

Blackpool Citizen: Dame Helen Mirren

2:09pm

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Blackpool Citizen:

Well wishers outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London

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Mr Setchell is being assisted by Alan Farthing, the former fiance of murdered TV presenter Jill Dando and the gynaecologist to the royal household.


Mr Farthing, who has been a doctor for 26 years, works at Queen Charlotte's & Chelsea Hospital in Hammersmith, west London, and St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, west London, where Kate is due to give birth in the private Lindo Wing.


He became the royal household's gynaecologist in September 2008 and Kate's baby is his first high-profile royal birth.


The consultant gynaecologist, who qualified at St George's Hospital Medical School in Tooting, south London, also works privately at King Edward VII's Hospital, the Wellington Hospital in north London, St Mary's Lindo Wing and Harley Street.


He is a specialist in fertility sparing surgery, keyhole surgery, gynaecological cancers and endometriosis.


Mr Farthing was engaged to popular BBC presenter Ms Dando when she was shot and killed in April 1999.


He found love again with fellow doctor Janet Stowell. They married in 2008 and have a young son.

 

1:51pm

Blackpool Citizen: Marcus Setchell

A medical team with extensive professional experience and knowledge of the Royal Family will look after the Duchess of Cambridge during the birth of her baby.


Marcus Setchell, the Queen's gynaecologist for two decades, is in charge of the care Kate will receive and helped save the lives of the Countess of Wessex and her eldest child Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor in 2003.


Sophie was rushed to hospital after complaining of severe internal pains when she was eight months pregnant.


She was dangerously ill from blood loss and doctors performed an emergency Caesarean.


Lady Louise was born weighing just 4lb 9oz and transferred to St George's Hospital for specialist care while the Countess remained at Frimley Park Hospital in Surrey, spending six days apart from her daughter.


Lady Louise was the first grandchild of the Queen to be born on the NHS.
In December 2001, the Countess was airlifted to hospital after suffering a potentially life-threatening ectopic pregnancy.


In 2004, Mr Setchell was made a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (CVO), a prestigious honour in the Queen's personal gift.


He also assisted with the Duchess of Cornwall's hysterectomy at King Edward VII's Hospital in 2007 and delivered Sophie's son James - Viscount Severn - the same year.

1:36pm

A general view of the press pen outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital 

Blackpool Citizen:

1:35pm

NBC News broadcast journalist and Today show News Anchor Natalie Morales in the press pen outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London

Blackpool Citizen:

1:34pm

Blackpool Citizen: EXPECTING: The Dutchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton

The Duchess's former music teacher Daniel Nicholls, who taught her piano from 11 to 14, said: "It's fantastic news that she's in labour and it's fantastic news for Kate and William and their families.
"Bucklebury just remains Bucklebury - it's a sleepy little village. Kate, I think, is a normal straightforward person and it's great for the Royal Family she's on board.
"Once the baby is born, Bucklebury will take it in its stride that the future, future King or Queen of England will come from here.
"At the time of the wedding we had lots of people and television here. After a week or so they go and we get back to normal village life."
Mr Nicholls said that Kate was a lovely student who was not brilliant at the piano but passed her grade five theory and grade three practical tests.
He also taught her mother Carole and sister Pippa, he said.
Lynda Tillotson owns a design shop near Bucklebury and she is selling a mug for £19.95 to commemorate the impending birth.
"Everyone here is very excited and we are all sharing in the anticipation," she said.
"We didn't have a mug produced for the wedding but we decided to make one for the birth. We have ordered 500 so that those local to Bucklebury could have one but we've had orders from America so we have ordered some more."

1:33pm

Residents of the area where the Duchess of Cambridge grew up as a child today told of their excitement at the impending birth of a future King or Queen who will be one of their own.


Villagers in Bucklebury and other places nearby were getting ready to celebrate the new royal addition who will be third in line to the throne.
Bunting is already out and pubs that are usually shut on a Monday are preparing to open once the announcement is made.


The world's media has descended on the Berkshire village with camera crews from as far afield as Australia and America setting up camp as the "Kate Wait" enters the final phase.


There is also a police presence at the house of her parents Michael and Carole, where it is believed the newborn will go.

1:31pm

With the arrival of a royal baby comes the age-old custom of placing a proclamation of royal birth behind the iron railings of Buckingham Palace.


Even in the fast Twitter-paced age, Palace aides have said the tradition will be adhered to for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first born.


The notice will begin its journey at the Lindo wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London, where Kate's baby is being delivered.


The brief bulletin, on headed Palace notepaper, confirms the sex of the baby but usually gives little else away other than that the baby has been ''safely delivered'' and perhaps the weight.


It used to be hand-written but is now mostly typed and will be signed by the Queen's gynaecologist Marcus Setchell, who is leading the medical team looking after the Duchess.


The document will be completed soon after the birth and, if events happen in daylight hours, will be taken under police escort through the streets of London to the palace.


Placed in a foolscap-sized dark wooden frame, it will be set on an ornate easel behind the railings, just to the side of the front gates of the Queen's London home for members of the public to read.


But the notice will not be put in place until the monarch and senior members of the Royal Family have been told of the new addition to their family.

1:29pm

What names do you like for a Royal baby boy or a girl? Leave us your comments

1:24pm

Fully refurbished last year, the wing describes itself as having offered ''leading private obstetric and neonatal care for 60 years''. It has private en suite rooms designed to provide ''comfort and privacy''.


Deluxe rooms and suites are also available. A normal delivery package including a one-night stay costs £4,965, with an extra night in a deluxe room costing £1,050, plus consultant's fees which can come to around £6,000, depending on the care required, meaning a two-night stay can cost more than £12,000.


A suite of two rooms, with one used as a living room, costs £6,265 for a one-night stay with normal delivery and £2,200 for each extra night, meaning a two-night stay, with consultant fees of an estimated £6,000, would cost around £14,465.


Each room has a satellite TV with major international channels, a radio, a safe, a bedside phone and a fridge.


The expectant mother and her visitors can access the internet on wifi and there is a choice of a daily newspaper delivered to the room each morning. Toiletries are also provided.


All meals are freshly prepared in a dedicated kitchen and tea and coffee is provided for mothers and guests throughout the day.
The wing also offers a ''comprehensive wine list should you wish to enjoy a glass of Champagne and toast your baby's arrival''.


Postnatal rooms come with a fully reclining chair for partners who want to stay. They will receive a free breakfast in the morning and visiting hours are flexible.

1:24pm

Blackpool Citizen:

The Lindo Wing at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London, where the Duchess of Cambridge is due to give birth, is an exclusive private facility offering ''bespoke care packages''.
The Duke of Cambridge and brother Prince Harry were born in the wing and Alan Farthing - gynaecologist to the royal household, who is assisting the Queen's gynaecologist Marcus Setchell in caring for the Duchess of Cambridge - works partly at St Mary's - on the NHS and in the Lindo.
William made his public debut with his parents outside the hospital, wrapped in a white blanket carried in the arms of his mother Diana, with the Prince of Wales at their side.
 

1:20pm

Police remove balloons from a barrier outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

1:18pm

Staff and patients take photographs of media outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

1:17pm

Well wishers with presents outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London

Blackpool Citizen:

1:17pm

Photographer's adjust remote cameras outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London

Blackpool Citizen:

1:16pm

Latest from Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

1:14pm

A pub named after the Duchess of Cambridge will celebrate the royal baby's birth with a new ale named Heir Raiser.


Punters will be treated to an English tea party after the news is announced and managers have prepared decorative banners to mark the occasion.
Bar staff were pulling pints of Heir Raiser at the pub in Windsor, Berkshire, this afternoon as the world waited for news of the latest addition to the Royal Family.


The pub has also launched a sweepstake and will give a bottle of champagne to the person who manages to guess the date and time of the birth most accurately.


Daniell Park, manager of the Duchess of Cambridge, said: "The day after the baby is born, we are going to be throwing a party with tea and cakes.
"We have got some banners ready to go up when we find out whether it's a boy or a girl.


"We have also got our special McMullen's beer which is already proving to be very popular."

1:12pm

Sydney covers the Royal birth...with a live webcam outside the hospital

http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/celebrity/royal-baby-kate-middleton-duchess-of-cambridge-in-labour-20130722-2qek1.html

Blackpool Citizen: NO PRESSURE THEN! Prince William and fiancée Kate Middleton at St James’s Palace on Tuesday

1:07pm

1:02pm

Psychic reveals what sex the Royal baby will be

12:59pm

If the royal baby is born today, they will share their birthday with:

Singer Selena Gomez, rugby player and Mrs Una Helay Ben Foden, actor Rhys Ifans, Hollywood star Willem Dafoe and Liverpool FC player Stewart Downing were all born on July 22.

If the baby doesn't appear until tomorrow, it will share a birthday with Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe, The Wanted's Tom Parker, Guns N Roses guitarist Slash, Destiny's Child singer Michelle Williams, comedian Jo Brand and former cricketer Graham Gooch.

 

12:56pm

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child will be third in line to the British throne.


Under new laws to succession the baby will remain third in line to the throne regardless of gender, and the gender of any subsequent siblings.

12:55pm

The way the birth will be announced is steeped in tradition. It is custom for news of royal births and deaths to be attached to the railings of Buckingham Palace, but in this case it will be displayed on an ornate easel in the forecourt of the palace.

12:17pm

Latest picture from Buckingham Palace

Blackpool Citizen:

12:13pm

Forensic artist predicts what Royal baby will look like

12:10pm

How the world is reporting news of iminent Royal birth

12:05pm

Kate Middleton - funny moments 

12:01pm

11:48am

The Prince of Wales arrived at the National Railway Museum in York by steam train as he began his two-day visit to Yorkshire today.


As he awaited news of the birth of his first grandchild, Charles stepped off the Royal Carriage through clouds of steam, to applause and cheers from the crowd.

Blackpool Citizen: Prince Charles at JFS

11:47am

Bookmakers witnessed a betting frenzy as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge edged closer to welcoming their baby into the world.


Coral said the royal baby was the biggest non-sporting betting event in the company1s history and punters were rushing to wager money on every aspect.


Nicola McGeady, spokeswoman for the firm, said: "The whole world has been waiting for Kate to go into labour and now that she has, we have witnessed another betting frenzy.


"Punters have been anxiously clutching onto their betting slips for months now and if the money talks, the baby will be called Alexandra, with brown hair, weighing 7lb to 7lb 15oz, an outcome which will prove a nightmare result for the bookies."


Paddy Power said some £30,000 was taken in bets in the three hours following the announcement that Kate was in labour.


Bets on the birth date have been suspended. Odds on the name Isabel/Isabella were cut from 25/1 to 10/1 following large bets placed on the prospect it could be William and Kate's chosen name for a girl.
Paddy Power even opened bets on the colour of Pippa Middleton's dress if she visits the baby in hospital.


William Hill said it hoped the arrival was not a girl because of how well backed it was in their royal baby markets - when bets were suspended on the sex, the odds stood at 8/15 for a girl and 11/8 for a boy.
The favourites at William Hill for a girl's name are Alexandra (7/4), Charlotte (6/1) and Diana (12/1), while the most popular boy's names are George (8/1) and James (10/1).


William Hill spokesman Joe Crilly said: "Royal baby betting has been incredibly popular and it looks like we may finally be able to pay out on the markets. We are excited that the birth is imminent, we just hope the young one is not a girl named Alexandra."

11:30am

Timeline of Kate's preganancy

11:28am

Crowds are gathering at Buckingham Palace

Blackpool Citizen:

11:28am

Latest pictures as press set up at Buckingham Palace

Blackpool Citizen:

11:26am

Crowds have swelled to three-deep along Buckingham Palace gates as anticipation of an announcement grew.


Police chatted with visitors, many pondering potential names for the newborn future monarch.


"I think it will be a girl, called Victoria Diana," one constable said confidently.

11:22am

David Cameron told the BBC: "Best wishes to them, a very exciting occasion and the whole country is excited with them. So, everyone's hoping for the best." Speaking later on BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour he said had been "pretty involved" in the birth of his children. "It's up to every family to work out how they want to do these things," he added. "I can't claim any role in this one, I'm afraid, except one small thing - well, it's a big thing actually - which is to get all of the heads of the realms over which our Queen is Queen, to agree that whatever the sex of the baby that Will and Kate have, if it's a girl, it will be our Queen."

11:15am

The tradition behind Royal births

11:09am

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10:54am

The latest outside the hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

10:53am

10:53am

The media frenzy at the hospital

Blackpool Citizen:

10:52am

Tourists outside Buckingham PalaceBlackpool Citizen:

10:51am

Latest from outside Buckingham Palace

Blackpool Citizen: Buckingham Palace

10:50am

Latest pictures from outside the Palace

Blackpool Citizen: Buckingham Palace

10:46am

Women in labour like the Duchess of Cambridge are likely be relieved their baby is finally on its way after coping with being pregnant in the middle of Britain's longest heatwave for seven years, a midwife has suggested.


Kate has been admitted to hospital in central London on what is expected to be the hottest day of the year so far.


The mercury is expected to reach 33C (91.4F), with the Midlands and the South of England the likely contenders for the hot spots.


The Lindo wing at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, where the Duchess is being cared for as she awaits the imminent arrival of her first baby, has individually-controlled air conditioning in its private rooms.

10:44am

How America is getting the news

10:42am

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby will have a "very Cancerian personality" even if it is born under the sign of Leo, an astrologer has predicted.


If the royal baby arrives today, its birthday will fall under the zodiac sign of Cancer, but if born very late this evening or tomorrow, it will be a Leo.


Astrologer Patrick Arundell said the future king or queen would be more conventional if a Cancerian, but more of a groundbreaker if born tomorrow as a Leo.


"Either way, he or she is going to be larger than life, charismatic and glamorous but they will have a very Cancerian personality, whether under the sign of Leo or not, and be sensitive and caring," Mr Arundell said.


He added: "If the baby's born today it will have a slightly more conventional and conservative personality, but if it's born tomorrow it will be more groundbreaking and more in tune with modernity."


William, who was born on June 21, is a Cancerian as was his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, whose birthday was July 1.


Other famous names who have the same star sign include former South African president Nelson Mandela, Hollywood actors Harrison Ford, Tom Hanks and Tom Cruise, and Edward VIII, who gave up the throne for American divorcee Wallis Simpson.

10:41am

The Duchess of Cambridge should expect to be in labour for around half a day, experts said.


Consultant obstetrician Patrick O'Brien said that the average length of labour for a first-time mother is about 12 hours.


So the royal baby could be born in the late afternoon or early evening.
At 7.30am Kensington Palace announced that Kate had been admitted to St Mary's Hospital in London in the early stages of labour - but it is unknown how long she was in labour for before going to hospital.


Mr O'Brien, spokesman for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: "With first baby, you usually dilate about a centimetre an hour and you've got to get from closed to 10 centimetres - which is fully dilated - so that's about 10 hours.


"When you reach fully dilated usually you wait for an hour or so to allow the baby's head to come as low as possible, and then you push - and the pushing is about an hour to an hour and a half.


"So about 12 hours is the average, sometimes quicker, sometimes slower, but that's what you have to budget for.


"But if someone is coming in to have labour induced, once the labour gets going it will be much the same, but it's impossible to know how long it will be from the time that she comes into hospital until the time that labour actually starts. It could be 24 hours before the labour even starts."

10:40am

Matthew and Donna Harold, from Michigan in the United States, said they had been asked to stock up on commemorative souvenirs for friends back home during their holiday in London.
"The royal baby is front-page news every day back in the States at the moment, there is a lot of excitement," said Mrs Harold.
"I'm sure the Duchess will be pleased, as we are, that the wait looks to be finally over - particularly because being pregnant in this heat must be very hard.
"Our holiday was booked months ago, so we did not expect to be over here while the baby was happening, so we have been told to bring back as many newspapers and souvenirs with the baby on as possible."
In Australia, a set of commemorative baby stamps has already been commissioned to mark the royal birth.
Lynette Traynor, a postal worker from Melbourne who is on holiday in London, said: "We love everything to do with the royals, so the news is full of it.
"We have a set of baby stamps ready to go, as soon as it has been confirmed. We can't get enough of it."
Another visitor to the Palace, 26-year-old German Veronika Schwarz, said she thought there was greater excitement outside of England.
"We don't have anything like the Royal Family in Germany, so we are all getting quite carried away with this.
"My friends in London seem like they just want the baby to come out now, I think they are tired of waiting."

10:40am

Well-wishers from around the globe began gathering outside Buckingham Palace today, as news of the royal baby's imminent arrival broke.
Tourists armed with cameras peered hopefully through the Palace gates on the off-chance of spotting the easel, due to be placed on the forecourt detailing confirmation of the birth.
The months of speculation and anticipation - dubbed the Great Kate Wait - built to a climax this morning amid news that the Duchess of Cambridge had been admitted to hospital in the early stages of labour.

10:37am

10:36am

The world's press have been camped outside St Mary's in Paddington for days in anticipation of the birth and even the Queen has joked about the imminent arrival of the newest member of her family, saying she hoped the baby was born before she went on holiday later this week.


The hospital's Lindo Wing is a private obstetric unit, with prices starting at just under £5,000 for a normal delivery package over 24 hours, with consultants' fees around £6,000 extra depending on the care required. The Duke and his younger brother, Prince Harry, were born in the Lindo Wing and the Prince and Princess of Wales famously posed on the building's steps in 1982 holding baby William in turn.

10:31am

10:31am

10:29am

With the arrival of a royal baby comes the age-old custom of placing a proclamation of royal birth behind the iron railings of Buckingham Palace.
Even in the fast Twitter-paced age, Palace aides have said the tradition will be adhered to for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first born.
The notice will begin its journey at the Lindo wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London, where Kate's baby is being delivered.
The brief bulletin, on headed Palace notepaper, confirms the sex of the baby but usually gives little else away other than that the baby has been ''safely delivered'' and perhaps the weight.
It used to be hand-written but is now mostly typed and will be signed by the Queen's former gynaecologist Marcus Setchell, who is leading the medical team looking after the Duchess.

10:24am

The Duchess of Cambridge has been admitted to hospital in the early stages of labour and is "progressing as normal", Kensington Palace has said.
Kate and husband William arrived at the private Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London by car without a police escort just before 6am.
The news that "the Great Kate Wait" - as bored journalists have dubbed their vigil outside the hospital - was finally over was announced in a brief statement from Kensington Palace at 7.30am after rumours began circulating that Kate had been spotted.

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