Lights, camera, action: UK royal baby to live on world stage

Mon Jul 22, 2013 5:47pm EDT
 
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By Michael Holden

LONDON (Reuters) - Already touted as one of the most famous babies in the world, the first child of Britain's Prince William and wife Kate faces a life in the spotlight like no previous royal, severely testing the couple's desire to give their offspring a "normal" life.

From the moment the baby boy leaves hospital in the arms of his parents in front of an army of TV cameras and photographers, his life in the public eye begins and so does his parents' formidable battle to protect his privacy.

That will have become harder in recent years with the advent of modern phones which mean anyone can take a high-quality picture and beam it around the world instantly via social media.

"I'm sure William and Kate will be desperate to give their baby as similar an upbringing as they had, as much out of the public eye as possible," royal author Claudia Joseph told Reuters.

Kate, as the first "commoner" to marry a prince in close proximity to the throne in more than 350 years, naturally enjoyed an upbringing out of the limelight.

William and his younger brother Harry were able to grow up largely out of the media spotlight after Britain's press agreed not to intrude, with little snooping into their early years apart from special occasions such as their first day at school.

Their mother, the late Princess Diana, had been determined that they should realize life was not all palaces and servants, taking them on family outings such as to an amusement park where they queued for the rides with other visitors.

"Diana wanted William to experience life from all sorts of angles," Joseph said. "She took him to HIV clinics, and to homeless charities and that's perhaps why he is the rounded man he is today and I'm sure he's conscious of that.   Continued...

 
Crowds of people try to look at a notice formally announcing the birth of a son to Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, placed in the forecourt of Buckingham Palace, in central London July 22, 2013. REUTERS/John Stillwell/Pool