The Duchess of Cambridge is just weeks away from giving birth to her and Prince William’s first child.
Kate is expected to give birth around mid-July, and when the baby is born the world’s media will be waiting outside the hospital hoping to catch a glimpse of the new heir to the throne.
As the Duchess’ due date approaches, we catch up with Royal protocol expert William Hanson on how he believes the Duchess of Cambridge has become one of the most skilled, and well dressed, royals in the world.
How do you think the Duchess of Cambridge has dressed for her pregnancy?
She has dressed very well – the same demure choices as before yet still on trend and stylish. Some women descend into looking dishevelled when pregnant, but thankfully the Duchess of Cambridge has yet to do that!
Kate has spent two years now as a member of the royal family, how you feel her royal role has changed?
Her Royal Highness is beginning to carve out her own niche within the family. Every member of ‘The Firm’ has their own specialities and areas of interest and Catherine is beginning to find hers and get very skilled at Royal duties. You can see she is a lot less nervous than 2 years ago. I think she’s done just great.
When the baby arrives, how do you think Prince William & Kate will react with the media attention?
With their usual decorum! They will know it will be there – they’ve had nine months to prepare for both a baby and a flood of media attention. I hope the media will leave them in peace immediately after the birth as child birth is known to be incredibly tiring for the mothers, and press intrusion will not help.
The baby will become third-in-line and our future monarch, how will Kate prepare the baby for their royal life?
I think the Duchess having joined the Royal Family as an outsider, will be best placed to guide her child into the spotlight when the time is right. She knows what is expected and what is right/wrong and so will be at a strong advantage for Royal motherhood.
What kind of protocol education will the royal baby take?
There is unlikely to be anything formal, a lot of it will be instruction here and there from family members or just learned through observation. Children are great mimics and if they see their family do something, they will copy.
Prince William & Kate have often been credited with modernising the royal family, do you think this is true?
Yes, I think this is true, but we must not forget that The Queen has modernised the Royal Family too. The Monarchy 61 years ago was very different from what it is now. The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh stopped the presentation of debutantes at court, abolished the ‘don’t turn your back to The Monarch’ rule, opened their homes to the public in order to levy some of the costs from the tax payer, and even allowed the Royal Household to go online on Twitter, Facebook & Flickr. Whilst the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are helping in this process, it is The Queen who is really to be credited.
How important do you think protocol is in today’s royal family?
It is and always will be – however modern the Royal Family get. They entertain world leaders, fellow Royalty and diplomats on behalf of the state and so protocol will and must be in place to ensure that there is no international faux pas. It is very easy to forget to look past sensationalist tabloid journalism, which can blur the real role and duties of the Royal Family.
Would you like to see Kate be styled as a Princess?
Yes, and this will probably come when her husband moves to be Prince of Wales. We shall wait and see.