IT was the moment that the world – and the bookmakers – had been waiting for.
After two days, Kensington Palace finally revealed the name of the new royal baby as Charlotte Elizabeth Diana – with a nod to not only her great-grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, and late grandmother, Diana, but also to her grandfather, Prince Charles.
It is believed that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge had decided on a name for their daughter shortly after her birth but wanted to inform the Queen personally, when she met the newborn for the first time at Sandringham yesterday afternoon, before it was publicly released.
“The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are delighted to announce that they have named their daughter Charlotte Elizabeth Diana,” said an official announcement from Kensington Palace. “The baby will be known as Her Royal Highness Princess Charlotte of Cambridge.”
The princess shares two of her names with Charlotte Diana, William’s first cousin and daughter of Diana, Princess of Wales’ brother, Earl Charles Spencer. Both Charlotte and Elizabeth also have a strong royal tradition.
The name Charlotte was ranked 21st in the National Records of Scotland girls’ names statistics of 2014, with 213 births, and holds similar popularity in the rest of the UK.
A 41-gun royal salute in London’s Hyde Park yesterday marked the birth of the new arrival, the most senior royal princess to be born for 65 years.
At the Tower of London there was a 62-gun salute fired by the Honourable Artillery Company.
The two-day wait for an official announcement of the royal baby’s name was the same timescale as that for the announcement made for her brother, Prince George, who was born two years ago in July.
A week passed, however, after Prince William’s birth before a name was announced, while Charles’s name was not revealed to the public until his christening, around a month after he was born.
The name Charlotte had been a favourite with the bookies during the week, but at the last minute was pushed into second place by Alice.
It is thought bookmakers will have collectively paid out around £1 million to punters – one of the costliest results in royal betting history.
However, experts claimed that new parents are now less likely to name their baby Charlotte.
“It’s a lovely name but we’re expecting to see fewer babies being called Charlotte in the coming months,” said Sasha Miller, managing editor of website BabyCentre.
“Parents don’t want to be labelled as having been influenced by others in their baby name choice, particularly by such a high-profile family. That was a pattern we saw very clearly after the birth of Charlotte’s older brother in 2013.”
Congratulations have been pouring in since Saturday, when the royal couple showed off their daughter to the public on the hospital steps just hours after she was born.
Charles Spencer, brother of William’s mother, Diana, took to Twitter to say that his daughter, Charlotte Diana, would be “thrilled” to share her name with her second cousin.
He said: “Perfect names. My two-year-old will be thrilled at cousinly name-sharing.”
Broadcaster Piers Morgan also took to Twitter to comment on the choice of the new baby’s name: “My sister’s going to be so happy,” he said, referencing his sister, Charlotte Tomlinson.
Labour leader Ed Miliband said: “Wishing Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana a long and happy life. I hope the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are enjoying her first, special days.”
A Scots butcher who supplies meat to the Queen when she is in residence at Balmoral Castle has produced a special sausage in honour of the birth of Princess Charlotte. HM Sheridan at Ballater created a pork, apricot and stilton sausage called the “Wee Strathearn” after the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Scottish title.
Co-owner John Sinclair said he expected demand to be as high for the Princess Charlotte sausage as for the one made for her brother, which sold 500kg of to customers nationwide. He added that he would send some up to Balmoral when the Royal Family next visits.