A Windsor retreat, progressive parents and as normal a life as possible
The first-born son of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will spend his childhood at Frogmore Cottage, near the Queen’s Windsor Castle.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have fulfilled their long-held dream of becoming parents.
But what will their baby son’s childhood be like?
The baby’s home will be Frogmore Cottage – Harry and Meghan’s new bolthole in Windsor Home Park in Berkshire.
The Grade II listed 10-bedroom property is set close to the winding lakes, wooded mounds, glades, walks and bridges of the gardens at Frogmore.
Growing up in a rural retreat in Windsor is likely to offer the royal youngster more freedom and privacy than a home in central London.
Just half a mile away from Windsor Castle, Baby Sussex will be able to join his great-grandmother the Queen for tea at her favourite residence.
With Meghan’s focus on empowering women and Harry’s devotion to raising awareness of mental health issues, the duke and duchess are already being billed as progressive parents.
Both are also known for their affectionate nature when meeting youngsters on walkabouts.
Former tennis star and champion of women’s rights Billie Jean King tweeted: “What a lucky baby to grow up with such loving, inclusive and progressive parents.”
Congratulations to Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan on the birthday of their son. What a lucky baby to grow up with such loving, inclusive, and progressive parents. Enjoy your new life together as a family of 3. #RoyalBaby— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) May 6, 2019
TV presenter Julia Bradbury, who met the couple through The Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy project, described them as looking set to be “nurturing inspirational parents”.
It's a boy!Congratulations to the Duke & Duchess of Sussex It was a privilege to meet them in connection with the @queenscanopy planting & preserving trees & forests around the world.A truly sparkling& dynamic couple, I'm sure they'll be nurturing inspirational parents #royalbaby pic.twitter.com/pfnWjIBBDP— Julia Bradbury (@JuliaBradbury) May 6, 2019
Rather than following the tradition of sending royal sons to Eton, Harry and Meghan are expected to choose a more modern path for their child.
Both Harry and his older brother, the Duke of Cambridge, went to the elite boys’ boarding school near Windsor.
But the Sunday Times reported that the Sussexes will opt for a more diverse international school, possibly ACS Egham, formerly known as the American Community School, which has a large intake from the US, as well as students from more than 60 other countries.
Just five miles from Frogmore Cottage, it is set in 20 acres of countryside, which gives the school a village feel. It takes pupils aged from four to 18.
“Our students – representing over 60 nationalities – become service-oriented, globally-minded world citizens with inquisitive minds and a real sense of personal responsibility,” the school’s website says.
American-born Meghan will undoubtedly want her son to get to know her home country, meaning trips to the US for the family of three.
The Sun reported that the duke and duchess want to find a home in California, near where the duchess grew up in Los Angeles.
Meghan’s mother, Doria Ragaland, who is at Frogmore Cottage helping her daughter through the first days of motherhood, lives in LA, so Stateside stays will become the norm for Baby Sussex.
Writing on her lifestyle blog, Meghan told how her “free-spirited clinical therapist” mother took her to visit the slums of Jamaica and to see poverty in Mexico when she was just 10.
“My mother raised me to be a global citizen, with eyes open to sometimes harsh realities,” she said.
Off to Africa
The royal baby could also be spending time in Africa, with plans being made for the duke and duchess to spend an extended period abroad as a way of harnessing their international appeal and expanding on their Commonwealth work.
A decision is unlikely to be taken until 2020, when they have settled down with their baby.
Harry once said, when asked what he would do if he were not a prince: “I’d probably live in Africa. I’d like to spend all my time out there … As a job, it would probably be a safari guide.”
Prince George and Princess Charlotte have joined their parents, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, on official overseas tours, and Harry and Meghan may decide to take their baby with them as they carry out their royal duties.
With the duke and duchess trying to keep the birth location private and details of their medical staff a secret, the protective parents will want to ensure their son grows up away from the limelight.
Harry, who knows only too well the pressure that comes with being a Windsor and once admitted he “wanted out” of the royal family, is set on allowing his son to have as normal a life as possible.
When he was dating Meghan, Harry spoke to Newsweek about his hopes for his future children.
“I do my own shopping. Sometimes, when I come away from the meat counter in my local supermarket, I worry someone will snap me with their phone,” he said.
“But I am determined to have a relatively normal life, and, if I am lucky enough to have children, they can have one too.”
Royal protection officers will always be close by, while help from housekeepers and aides will be the norm, but Harry and Meghan will be hands-on parents.
Celebrity friends and royal cousins
Former actress Meghan has a host of famous friends, and Baby Sussex is likely to be playmates with their children.
As well as George and Amal Clooney’s twins, Ella and Alexander, and Serena Williams’ daughter, Alexis, Baby Sussex also has his first cousins George, Charlotte and Prince Louis.
Days could also be spent at the polo with Peter and Autumn Phillips’ fun-loving children, Savannah and Isla, and Zara and Mike Tindall’s cheeky daughter, Mia, and her younger sister, Lena – who are the new baby’s second cousins.
While George and Charlotte are rarely seen in public, they do join the Queen and other royals for the traditional Buckingham Palace balcony appearance for the monarch’s birthday parade, Trooping the Colour.
Royal fans will be hoping to see Harry and Meghan’s young son on the famous balcony in the future.