Thursday 19 September 2019

Prince Harry and Meghan announce birth of 'amazing, fabulous' baby boy in mix of tradition and modernity

Proud dad: Prince Harry announces the birth at Windsor Castle. Picture: Reuters
Proud dad: Prince Harry announces the birth at Windsor Castle. Picture: Reuters

Hannah Furness

Britain's Prince Harry and wife Meghan Markle have welcomed a newborn baby boy into their lives, as the new father told the world of the "amazing, absolutely incredible" joy his son has brought them.

The Duke of Sussex could barely contain his excitement as he personally announced the safe arrival of his firstborn, saying he and Meghan were "over the moon" in their first few hours of parenthood.

The baby boy, who weighed 7lb 3oz, arrived at 5.36am yesterday, after Meghan went into labour in the early hours with Harry by her side.

After hours of privacy at Frogmore Cottage, where they were joined by Doria Ragland, Meghan's mother, the couple authorised Buckingham Palace to share the news with the waiting world.

In a mix of tradition and modernity the Sussexes have made their hallmark, a formal announcement was accompanied by an Instagram post - coloured blue - declaring: "It's a boy!"

And with those words began a new generation: a family of three, a first half-American, mixed-race royal baby, and a once lost little prince finally transformed into a proud dad.

As he stepped out in front of television cameras to announce the news, appearing to all but burst with joy, Harry's awe was infectious.

Confiding he had scraped a few hours' sleep, he steadied himself for the formalities: "I'm very excited to announce that Meghan and myself had a baby boy earlier this morning, a very healthy boy. Mother and baby are doing incredibly well."

Then, the emotion so many associate with his late mother poured forth.

"It's been the most amazing experience I could ever have possibly imagined," he said.

"How any woman does what they do is beyond comprehension but we're both absolutely thrilled and so grateful to all the love and support from everybody out there. It's been amazing, so we just wanted to share this with everybody."

Asked whether they had settled on a name, he said they were "still thinking" about it, despite the extra time they had been bought by the "little bit overdue" baby boy.

Next, he promised, would be a photocall for the family of three today "to share it with you guys and so everyone can see the baby".

Dressed casually, and standing in front of the stables at Windsor Castle, Harry thanked the press for their interest before turning, slightly dazed, and thanking two horses for behaving themselves during the broadcast.

The couple will now settle in to life as parents with the help of Ms Ragland, before the new father flies away to launch the Invictus Games at The Hague on Thursday.

In a second Instagram post yesterday, the couple declared: "Their Royal Highnesses thank you for your support and kindness during this exceptionally joyful time in their lives as they welcome their baby boy."

Tradition was not dispensed with entirely. The birth was formally announced at Buckingham Palace with a notice on an easel carried by two butlers.

Unlike the announcements for each of Prince William's children, the notice was not signed by the doctors who delivered the baby.

The baby is expected to have the formal title of the Earl of Dumbarton.

Irish Independent

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