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Royal baby: Timeline to the birth

Here is the timeline leading up to the birth of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's baby:

:: September 2001: Prince William and Kate Middleton meet at St Andrews University, where they are studying art history.

:: Christmas 2003: The pair reportedly become a couple after sharing a house together with two friends.

:: November 16, 2010: William and Kate's engagement is announced by Clarence House.

:: April 29, 2011: The pair wed at Westminster Abbey. William is made the Duke of Cambridge by the Queen and Kate becomes the Duchess of Cambridge.

:: December 3, 2012: St James's Palace announce that the Duchess is pregnant and being treated in hospital for severe morning sickness, known as hyperemesis gravidarum.

:: December 4, 2012: Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg confirms the Government has received final consent from all Commonwealth realms to press ahead with a Bill ending discrimination against women in the succession to the British throne.

:: December 5, 2012: Prank callers from an Australian radio station pretending to be the Queen trick a nurse at the King Edward VII's Hospital in London into revealing information about Kate's condition.

:: December 6, 2012: The Duchess is discharged from hospital after three nights, telling reporters she is feeling "much better".

:: December 6, 2012: The Prince of Wales says he is "thrilled" that the Duchess is pregnant, adding: "It's a very nice thought to become a grandfather in my old age."

:: December 7, 2012: Nurse Jacintha Saldanha who took the initial prank call and put it through to another colleague is found dead in a suspected suicide.

:: December 9, 2012: William pulls out of attending the British Military Tournament so he can spend time with Kate as she recuperates.

:: December 16, 2012: Kate makes her first public appearance since leaving hospital by presenting the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year award to cyclist Bradley Wiggins.

:: December 25, 2012: Instead of going to Sandringham on Christmas Day, Kate and William stay with the Middleton family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire.

:: January 11, 2013: Kate and William attend the unveiling of her first official portrait at the National Portrait Gallery.

:: January 14: St James's Palace announces that the baby is due in July and that Kate is feeling better. She is now in her second trimester and has had her 12-week scan.

:: February 5: Kate and William holiday on the Caribbean island of Mustique with the Middletons, reportedly staying in a £19,000-a-week villa.

:: February 12: Italian gossip magazine Chi uses photos of Kate in a bikini on holiday. St James's Palace say they are "disappointed" at the "clear breach" of privacy. Other foreign publications follow suit.

:: February 19: Kate carried out her first engagement in five weeks and visited the Hope House addiction treatment centre in south London, showing signs of a small baby bump and admitting she was nervous about giving birth.

Meanwhile, debate raged when novelist Hilary Mantel described the Duchess as "gloss varnished" with a "perfect plastic smile". Prime Minister David Cameron stepped into the row and branded the comments "completely wrong".

:: March 2: Kate and William travel to Switzerland for a friend's wedding in the ski resort of Arosa.

:: March 5: Kate apparently lets slip that she is expecting a daughter on a solo visit to Grimsby. Accepting a teddy bear from a member of the public, she apparently replied: "Oh, is this for our d...? Thank you so much." Although other footage suggest she said "Is this for us? Aw" instead.

:: March 17 - Kate tells a soldier at a St Patrick's Day parade that they do not know the sex, but says she would like a boy and William a girl.

:: March 19 - William and Kate visit the headquarters of Child Bereavement UK, exchanging hugs with bereaved parents. They also meet TV cook Mary Berry.

:: March 20 - Kate gets given a "Baby on board" badge when she joins the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at Baker Street underground station to mark the 150th anniversary of the Tube.

:: March 22 - Kate visits a Scout camp in the Lake District in snowy conditions.

:: April 4 - Kate reveals she has taken up knitting ahead of the birth during a two day visit to Scotland and reveals the baby is due in mid July.

:: April 5 - Kate and William join the Prince of Wales at Dumfries House in Ayrshire where Kate is given a "Princess Catherine" doll by a wellwisher.

:: April 19 - Kate chooses three more patronages - SportsAid, the Natural History Museum and Place2Be, a mental health charity for schoolchildren.

:: April 21 - The Duchess showed off her baby bump, looking obviously pregnant for the first time, at the National Review of Queen's Scouts at Windsor Castle.

:: April 23 - Kate's bump was even clearer under her a £1,065 blue patterned silk Erdem dress by Sophia Visconti as she visited Willows Primary School on the deprived Wythenshawe estate in Greater Manchester. In her third speech as a royal she said "cycle of addiction needs to be broken" as she launched a school drugs and alcohol counselling programme.

:: April 24 - Kate, in a duck-egg blue empire-line Emilia Wickstead cocktail dress, attended an evening reception at the National Portrait Gallery in honour of The Art Room charity and gave a short speech on the power of art to change people's lives.

:: April 25 - It emerges that France's Closer magazine and a photographer have been placed under formal criminal investigation following the publication of topless pictures of Kate in September 2012.

:: April 26 - Kate, William and Prince Harry get given their own wands on a tour of Warner Bros Studios in Leavesden, Hertfordshire, where the Harry Potter films were made.

:: April 29 - The Duchess spends part of her second wedding anniversary celebrating Children's Hospice Week with a visit to Naomi House Children's Hospice in Hampshire.

:: May 11 - Kate and William attend William van Cutsem and Rosie Ruck Keene's wedding in Oxfordshire.

:: May 12 - It is reported that Kate's baby is due on July 13.

:: May 22 - Kate attends a garden party at Buckingham Palace.

:: June 4 - William and Kate return to their wedding venue when they join the royal family for a service marking the 60th anniversary of the Queen's Coronation at Westminster Abbey.

:: June 13 - Kate, in a dalmatian print coat, carries out her final solo engagement before going off on maternity leave when she names a new cruise liner - Royal Princess - in Southampton.

:: June 15 - The eight months pregnant Duchess makes her last public appearance before the birth at the Trooping the Colour parade.

:: June 19 - It is confirmed Kate is planning to give birth at the private Lindo wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington. She is hoping for a natural birth but does not know if the baby is a girl or a boy.

:: June 22 - Kate stays at home while William attends the wedding of his close friend Thomas van Straubenzee.

:: July 1 - Dozens of photographers' ladders stand in place outside the Lindo wing as the due date approaches.

:: July 11 - The Duchess of Cornwall tells guests at the Coronation Festival: "We are very excited. Immensely looking forward to it and waiting for the phone call", while the Prince of Wales declares: "It won't be long now."

:: July 13 - William joins Prince Harry for a weekend of polo ahead of the birth, while Kate stays at her parents house near Bucklebury, Berkshire, to spend time with them in the final days of her pregnancy.

:: July 17 - Queen says she doesn't mind whether the baby is a boy or a girl, but adds: "I would very much like it to arrive. I'm going on holiday" during a visit to Cumbria.

:: July 18 - William remains with Kate at her parents' Berkshire home as the media wait outside the Lindo wing.

:: July 22 - Kate, with William at her side, is admitted to the Lindo wing in the early stages of labour at around 6am and Kensington Palace later announce the Duchess gave birth to a son, weighing 8lbs 6oz, at 4.24pm.

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