Baby Prince George to be christened next month
Prince George will be christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury next month at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace, Kensington Palace announced today.
Prince William and Kate Middleton's baby son will be baptised during the ceremony held on Wednesday, October 23 - just over three months since his birth.
Kensington Palace said "close members of both families" would attend but the names of senior guests would be released at a later date.
The Queen and Prince Phillip are expected to attend the christening along with the Prince charles, who has become a grandfather for the first time, and his wife Camilla.
Kate's family - parents Carole and Michael Middleton and siblings Pippa and James - are likely to be invited along with the godparents who have not been publicly named.
The christening, conducted by the Most Rev Justin Welby, will be a private event with photographs released afterwards of William, Kate and their son, together with senior royals.
The ceremony is usually held at Buckingham Palace or at places of worship at Windsor Castle.
Princess Beatrice was the last royal baby to be christened at St James's Palace in December 1988.
In a statement Kensington Palace said: "Their royal highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are pleased to announce the christening of Prince George will take place on Wednesday, 23rd October at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace.
"Prince George will be christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby."
The Archbishop later spoke of his joy at being asked to conduct the christening: 'I am delighted to be invited to conduct the baptism of Prince George.
"It is a great privilege and honour and will without doubt be an occasion of immense joy and celebration. I am looking forward to welcoming him into the family of the church."
The official pictures released after the ceremony will give the world only its third glimpse of the baby prince.
He was photographed when his proud parents left the private Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London where he was born on July 22.
Then a few weeks later pictures were released that had been taken at the Middleton family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire by his proud grandfather Michael.
George will be christened in a replica of the intricate lace and satin christening gown made for Queen Victoria's eldest daughter, Victoria, the Princess Royal, in 1841.
The Earl and Countess of Wessex's son Viscount Severn became the first royal baby to wear the new robe at his christening in 2008.