From St James' Palace:
'Their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that the Duchess of Cambridge is expecting a baby.
'The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Princes of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry and members of both families are delighted with the news'.
The statement went on to explain that Kate is currently being treated in King Edward VII Hospital as she is suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum (very acute morning sickness), which requires supplementary hydration and nutrients. The Duchess is expected to remain in hospital for several days.
'As the pregnancy is in its very early stages, Her Royal Highness is expected to stay in hospital for several days and will require a period of rest thereafter'.
The Palace refused to comment on when the couple became aware of the pregnancy but it is thought Kate is less than twelve weeks pregnant. Aides say Kate's need to go to hospital forced the announcement perhaps earlier than it would have been otherwise. Kate was with her family in Bucklebury, Berkshire when she was taken ill and travelled to the hospital by car.
|Richard Palmer Twitter|
The world's media camping outside King Edward VIII hospital this evening.
|Philippa Thomas Twitter|
My own mother suffered with Hyperemesis Gradvidarum and described it as "an incredibly difficult pregnancy disease resulting in weight loss, malnutrition and persisting nausea and vomiting". It is estimated the percentage of pregnant women afflicted range from 0.3% to 2%. The cause of HG is unknown but it is thought it is an adverse reaction to the hormonal changes during pregnancy. Women experiencing HG often are dehydrated and lose weight despite efforts to eat and drink.
The Hyperemesis Education & Research Foundation released a statement sending their thoughts and prayers to Kate:
William and Kate were last seen together on Wednesday in Cambridge.
You may recall Prince William looked rather pleased to receive the gift of a babygro with 'Daddy's little co-pilot' written on it.
Naturally, Kate's next three engagements have been cancelled meaning the Duchess will be unable to attend the ICAP Charity Day on the 5th, the Winter Whites Gala on the 8th and the British Military Tournament on the 9th.
|Richard Palmer Twitter|
Congratulations have been pouring in, including best wishes from President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle. Prime Minister David Cameron shared his wishes via Twitter:
|UK Prime Minister David Cameron Twitter|
UPDATE: Prince William was photographed leaving the hospital at roughly 8.30 tonight after spending the day by Kate's side.
I am absolutely delighted for William and Kate. They will make fantastic parents, a huge congratulations to both of them. I hope Kate recovers shortly and enjoys a happy and healthy pregnancy. It is also a wonderful day for the Royal family who only found out about the pregnancy today.
Now the question is, will it be a boy or a girl? :) I'll be updating the post as news comes in.