ROYAL BABY

Earl and Countess of Dumbarton expecting their first child in the spring

Harry and Meghan 2

By Bill Heaney

The Countess of Dumbarton is pregnant and is due to give birth next spring, Kensington Palace has revealed.

The announcement came as Meghan, 37, and Prince Harry, 34, whose titles are also Duke and Duchess of Sussex, arrived in Sydney on Monday ahead of a 16-day tour of Australia and New Zealand.

Kensington Palace said the couple, who got married in Windsor five months ago, were “delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public”.

Their baby will be seventh in line to the throne. The name being suggested in some households in West Dunbartonshire today range from Rocky, Clyde, Bruce or Patrick if it’s a boy and Helen or Alexandria if it’s a girl.

Royal connections with Dumbarton go back to Mary Queen of Scots and Robert the Bruce and Queen Elizabeth herself who presented the keys of Dumbarton Castle in the town shortly after her Coronation.

The Queen and other senior royals were told about the Countess’s pregnancy on Friday, when members of the Royal Family gathered in Windsor for Princess Eugenie’s wedding.

Meghan – who has had her 12-week scan – attended the wedding with Prince Harry, wearing a long, dark blue coat, which sparked speculation she could be expecting.

That speculation intensified when she was seen clutching two large folders in front of her stomach as she arrived in Sydney for the tour, which will also take in Fiji and Tonga.

It is their first official royal tour since their wedding, which also took place at St George’s Chapel, Windsor.

Their first engagement is on Tuesday, when crowds of well-wishers are expected to congratulate the couple.

The earl and countess follow in the footsteps of Prince Harry’s parents – Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales – whose first royal tour was to Australia and New Zealand.

Their baby will be a first cousin of Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis – but will not themselves be a prince or princess unless the Queen steps in ahead of the birth.

Royal biographer Robert Hardman said the children will be lord and lady “like the children of any other duke”, because Prince Harry is not in the direct line of succession.

The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prince of Wales, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Duchess of Cornwall are all said to be “delighted” for the couple after learning of the pregnancy at Friday’s wedding.

Prime Minister Theresa May has congratulated the couple, saying: “My warmest congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the happy news they are expecting a baby in the spring. Wishing them all the best.”

The Democrat wishes the Dumbartons well, but we were unable to obtain a message of congratulation to the couple from the Provost of West Dunbartonshire since we are banned and boycotted by the SNP administration from contacting the council media department.

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