The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be welcoming their second baby in April 2015, Kensington Palace has confirmed. Kate's pregnancy was announced last month but the due date had not been released until now. In a statement, the palace said the 32-year-old Duchess, who is around fourteen weeks pregnant, continued to suffer from extreme morning sickness but her condition was 'steadily improving'.
The pregnant Duchess will make her first public appearance on Tuesday where she will join Prince William to officially welcome Singapore's President Tony Tan as he begins a four-day visit to the UK. The royal couple's second baby will be fourth in line to the throne, behind one-year-old Prince George, who was born in July last year. Kate recently took refuge with her parents while she was 'struggling terribly' with her debilitating antenatal sickness. The royal retreated to her family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire, last week with her son, Prince George.
Sources said the Duchess 'hasn't been at all well' as she battles hyperemesis gravidarum, which causes severe vomiting in expectant mothers.
Her mother Carole Middleton has apparently helped to take charge of her recovery and has been researching alternative sickness cures, such as herbal tea, on the internet. And despite the presence of Spanish nanny Maria Borallo, Mrs Middleton has also been taking George off her daughter's hands. She has been seen in local shops with her 15-month-old grandson, prompting one startled assistant to write on Twitter: 'Served Kate Middleton's mum and Prince George today at work. He is gorgeous!' The Duchess says she feels far more relaxed at the Middleton family's £5million Georgian mansion, Bucklebury Manor, than at Kensington Palace.
One source told the Mail: 'Kate is feeling so lousy that she just wanted to be with her family and out of public view.'
She is extremely close to Carole, who is very much a hands-on grandmother. Between her and their nanny, Maria, Kate has all the help she needs with George while she is feeling so sick. '
The Duchess – who has now returned to London – has not been seen in public since palace officials were forced to announce her pregnancy last month, several weeks earlier than intended due to her sickness.
Kate was hospitalised with hyperemesis gravidarum and severe dehydration during her first pregnancy with George. But doctors have been better prepared this time and may, some medical experts have suggested, even have treated her with a drip at home.
A source added: 'Don't be fooled by the fact that she hasn't been admitted to hospital this time. She is just as poorly. The difference is that her doctors have been able to diagnose and treat her quicker. She really hasn't been at all well, though.'
The Duchess was forced to cancel her first solo overseas visit – a trip to Malta – last month because of the severity of her condition. Last fortnight she also reluctantly cancelled a visit to a project by The Art Room in London and several other forthcoming engagements have now been scratched out of her diary.
Caitlin Dean, of the charity Pregnancy Sickness Support, said: 'Hyperemesis gravidarum is not morning sickness. It is a chronic and debilitating condition that can cause sufferers to vomit up to 30 times a day.'