They have made much of their desire to be “hands-on” parents, but the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are now on the lookout for a nanny for Prince George, it has emerged.
The couple have put out feelers to find a nanny to help them look after their son when they increase their royal workload in the spring.
Since the third in line to the throne was born last July, the couple have relied heavily on the Duchess’s mother, Carole Middleton, for help with childcare duties, and have also employed the Duke’s former nanny Jessie Webb, 71, on a part-time basis.
But after Miss Webb reportedly came to the end of her contract last month, the couple have put out the word to nanny agencies that they are looking for a long-term replacement, whose duties will be closer to a full-time role than the one filled by Miss Webb.
One possibility is that the couple will want to have the new nanny in place by the time of their three-week tour of Australia and New Zealand in April, on which they will be accompanied by Prince George.
Kensington Palace has already made it clear that the Duke and Duchess will not be taking Carole Middleton on the trip, and a nanny will be needed to look after Prince George for much of the time during the couple’s hectic schedule.
Before their son was born, the Duke and Duchess let it be known that they were determined to do without a full-time nanny, and after the birth the Duke proudly spoke of having changed the first nappy.
The Duke is currently studying agricultural management at Cambridge University, while the Duchess is effectively on maternity leave, making only a handful of official appearances since becoming a mother.
But the couple’s tour of Australia and New Zealand will mark their return to royal duties, which will take up more of their time than ever following the Duke’s decision to quit his military career last September.
A Kensington Palace spokesman said: “We do not discuss personal arrangements."
Whichever nanny they find will surely come highly recommended – but if for some reason it doesn't work out, might we suggest any one of these eight famous nannies from popular culture?
Pros: Royal nursery now self-cleaning! (And polo-player Will should be delighted with a nanny who rides horses, even nicked from a carousel.)
Cons: Over-reliance on processed sugar to make medicine go down. Also: Flighty – takes off for another job as soon as the wind changes. And should Buckingham Palace worry about a mysterious magician getting too close to the royal family? Remember what happened to the Russians.
Nana, Peter Pan
Pros: As she is an actual sheepdog with no command of human language, she is unlikely to tattle in the British tabloids.
Cons: Will and Kate's cocker spaniel, Lupo, is already top dog at the Cambridge household.
Maria Von Trapp, The Sound of Music
Pros: The original clothing recycler, turning drapes to dresses. Thrifty Kate would approve.
Cons: She married the boss!
Fran Fine, The Nanny
Pros: Already has tons of experience working for posh families.
Cons: She also married the boss! (This is becoming a trend.)
Pros: She's Scottish, which is important at a time like this.
Cons: Would George confuse her with great-granny the Queen?
Source 1, Source 2