Monday 23 April 2018

How Princess Diana and Kate Middleton did it differently: 10 facts about royal births

Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge show their new-born baby boy to the world's media outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London on July 23, 2013
Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge show their new-born baby boy to the world's media outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London on July 23, 2013
Prince George outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital, London with his parents Kate Middleton and Prince William.
19. As he makes his way to see his sister Princess Charlotte for the first time, he's joined by Prince William and the cutest knee socks of all time.
File photo dated 16/09/1984 of Prince William waving to the crowd as he leaves the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital, London, with his nanny Barbara Barnes, after spending approximately 20 minutes visiting his mother the Princess of Wales and his new-born baby brother Prince Harry.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles walk through Liverpool Street Station in London with their dogs, having returned by train from Sandringham after the Christmas holidays, 18th January 1960
Princess Diana holding baby Prince Harry as she and Prince Charles leave St. Marys hospital in London, 1984
(John Stillwell/PA)

Laura Elston

Here are 10 facts about royal births.

1. A team of 23 medical staff was on hand for the birth of Prince George and Princess Charlotte at the private Lindo Wing.

A handful of midwives and others led by a consultant obstetrician were in the delivery room, but obstetricians, gynaecologists, surgeons, haematologists and theatre staff were also waiting in the wings in case of an emergency.

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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with baby daughter Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. Photo: PA

2. After William was born in 1982, the Prince of Wales wrote how he was "so thankful I was beside Diana's bedside the whole time".

"I really felt as though I'd shared deeply in the process of birth," he added.

3. Diana was induced because she could not bear the pressure from the media any longer - and claimed doctors had to find a date that suited Charles and his polo fixtures.

4. The Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, was given an anaesthetic to help with the pain while in labour with first child Charles in 1948.

5. A restless Duke of Edinburgh occupied himself by playing squash while awaiting the arrival of his firstborn.

6. The Queen had all her four children - Charles, Anne, Andrew and Edward - at home at Buckingham Palace and Clarence House.

7. Princess Elizabeth was born at home by Caesarean section in her grandparents' house in Mayfair, London.

She was breech and it was a difficult birth for her mother the Duchess of York.

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Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Diana, Princess of Wales leave St Mary's Hospital with baby Prince William on June 22, 1982 in London, England. (Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images)

8. It used to be the custom that government ministers and other witnesses were present at royal births to ensure no substitute child had been smuggled in in a warming pan or similar receptacle.

9. But Queen Victoria put her foot down when her great-grandchild, the future Edward VIII, was born in 1894 and declared that just one Cabinet minister would be needed, with only the home secretary attending from then on.

10. The birth of the Queen's cousin Princess Alexandra on Christmas Day in 1936 was the last occasion that a home secretary was present, meaning the Duchess of Cambridge has been spared such an intrusion.

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Princess Diana holding baby Prince Harry as she and Prince Charles leave St. Marys hospital in London, 1984

Prince Charles's birth was the first time in centuries that there was not a government minister there to witness the arrival of a future heir to the throne.

Press Association

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