Royal baby: will he head home soon?

The royal baby's birth marks the first time since 1894 that three direct descendant heirs are alive during a monarch's reign.

Sang Tan/AP
A man reads a newspaper carrying front page news of the birth of a baby boy of Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, outside Buckingham Palace in London, Tuesday, July 23, 2013.

Today the bells of Westminster Abbey pealed in celebration of the birth of Prince William and Kate's son – as they did more than 30 years ago when William was born – while the army fired two gun salutes in different parts of London.

While Britain awaits a glimpse of the new prince, the country continues to speculate about his name with George, Henry, and James among the favorites.

Because the baby was a boy, the new Succession to the Crown Act which would have allowed a first-born girl to ascend to the throne, will not be used. However it is the first time since 1894 that three direct descendant heirs – Charles, William, and the newborn – are alive during a monarch’s reign.

As the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton continues to recover at her central London hospital, Kensington Palace issued a brief statement saying: “Mother, son and father are all doing well this morning.”

The media continued to wait outside St. Mary’s Hospital and it is inconceivable that William and Kate will try and sneak out of the back door as they entered and instead depart through the main entrance providing a photoshoot which will be on newspapers, websites, and television screens around the world.

Where next for the royal couple and their new prince remains open to debate but any disappointment on Kate’s side that she did not have the girl she wanted will not last long, says Ingrid Seward, editor of Majesty magazine.

“She said at a Buckingham Palace Garden Party that she wanted a girl and William wanted a boy but I think once a baby is born, we’re all just happy its arrived safely and the mother is okay," says Ms. Seward.

“There’s no real protocol about what happens next but I think they’ll go back to Kensington Palace for 48 hours where she can get some rest. They don’t have to visit the Queen, there is no precedent set down but I would imagine William will want to show his grandmother the new baby.

“After that I’d imagine Kate would want to stay at Bucklebury (the Middleton’s family home in Berkshire) where she can be with her mother and get the support from her family,” adds Seward.

Mr. and Mrs. Middleton beat the in-laws to seeing the new grandchild today when they visited St. Mary’s Hospital in Paddington to see the Prince of Cambridge, who was born on Monday at 4.24pm weighing 8lbs 6oz.

However not every Brit has been excited by the news of the birth. Jenny Colgan, author, social commentator, and mother-of-three said she was bemused by the intimate nature of some of the reporting of the birth.

“I’ve been passively interested in it, but mostly because I’m a mother myself," says Ms. Colgan. "But some of the coverage on the news has been distasteful, talking about dilating and getting midwives to say what may or may not be happening inside the hospital.

“I worry about the level of the circus coverage where there’s been very little privacy for Kate. Next, the papers will be saying how quickly she gets her figure back and putting pressure on like that. Diana was put under pressure but not as much as Kate will probably be put under – I think it’s disgusting.

“I’m not some wild republican and I enjoyed the Queen’s jubilee and all that but I think this has all been over the top,” she adds.

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