Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 31 August 2014

Prince George's baptism date set

Prince George is to be christened on October 23 at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace

Prince George will be christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury next month in the little known Chapel Royal at St James's Palace.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby son will be baptised on Wednesday, October 23 - just over three months since his birth.

In past decades senior royal babies - the Queen, Prince of Wales and William - have been christened at Buckingham Palace.

But the Cambridges have chosen the Chapel Royal, where the coffin of the Duke's mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, lay in rest before her funeral. Princess Beatrice was the last royal baby to be christened at St James's Palace in December 1988.

Following the christening an historic picture will be released showing the Queen with three future monarchs - Charles, William and George.

It will echo the picture taken in July 1894 during the christening of the future Edward VIII, showing the royal baby with his father, later George V, grandfather, the future Edward VII, and great grandmother Queen Victoria.

The Duke of Edinburgh is expected to attend the christening along with the Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry.

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 will be conducted by the Most Rev Justin Welby.

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 has spoken of his joy at being asked to conduct the christening. He said: "I am delighted to be invited to conduct the baptism of his royal highness 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.

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