Colette Fitzpatrick: The Great Kate Wait begins...how will we cope?
The best thing about the royal birth – due later this month – will be switching between the BBC and Sky to watch veteran broadcaster Simon McCoy deadpanning his way through endless baby news segments while Kay Burley convulses and almost combusts with excitement.
Simon actually said “We’ll keep on endlessly speculating with no facts whatsoever” as he stood outside St Mary’s Hospital in London awaiting the birth of Princess Charlotte.
Kay was writhing, so much so that you’d think she must be related Wills and his wife.
The great Kate Wait is well under way. All we know is she’s due. At some point in the future.
I’m putting the house on it being either a boy or a girl. This baby will become fifth in line to the throne behind its grandfather Prince Charles, its dad Prince William, its older brother Prince George and its older sister Princess Charlotte.
Parking restrictions are in place outside the Lindo Wing and the crowd control barriers are up.
A 23-strong royal birthing team is prepped and ready to go. Yes, really. That’s three midwives, two obstetricians, three anaesthesiologists, four surgical staff members, two special care staffers, four paediatricians, one lab technician for blood tests and three or four managers.
In an ever-so-millennial move, the Duke and Duchess announced they’ll be breaking the news of their new baby on Instagram. Gone are the days when people would wait outside the hospital for snippets of royal baby news. Now Kensington Palace’s social media is actually your best bet.
There are some ancient traditions that used to be observed. Like having a witness when you give birth. Yonks ago, there were concerns that the royals would replace a stillbirth with a baby not of royal blood if something should go wrong.
Years ago too, royalty kept non-royal grandparents at a distance. That’s clearly not the case today, with Carole and Michael Middleton getting as stuck in as any other granny and grandad.
It’s also tradition that when a royal baby is born there’s a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London and a 41-gun salute at Green Park, near Buckingham Palace.
It’s a symbol of celebration and welcoming to the baby, who may one day be heir to the throne. I guess it’s the royal way of getting the public excited (I don’t think they need help in this department).
Although the gender is revealed immediately, it’s tradition to hold off on announcing the name directly after the birth. Maybe it’s to do with more speculation and more excitement and more filling of 24-hour news services. Steady on, Kay. Commiserations, Simon.
I guess it’s about time to start speculating on the outfit Kate will wear leaving hospital.
Remember how “brave” everyone said she was as her post-partum belly protruded through her dress last time?
For crying out loud, what the tabloids really meant was “look at the state of that”.