London: The royal baby hysteria has gripped Britons as the whole country celebrated the news of Prince William and his wife Catherine expecting a baby.
The news was splashed on front pages of all newspapers and the coverage included baby photographs of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the computer generated composites of what the royal baby will look like and even how old will it be before succeeding on throne.
Thirty-year-old Catherine was admitted to the King Edward VII Hospital in London on Monday and is still there.
Prince William, who spent the day in hospital with his wife on Monday, arrived at 11.30 am to visit his pregnant wife, who is being treated for severe morning sickness, known as hyperemesis gravidarum. This rare condition can leave expectant mothers dehydrated and underweight.
The Clarence House did not confirm the due date for the royal baby and said on Tuesday that Catherine was expected to stay in hospital for a few more days.
The hysteria has led to manufacturers already flooding the market with commemorative mugs, cups and plates for the new baby.
Meanwhile, the interest in the royal baby has led to bookmakers cutting odds for the Cambridges having a set of twins.
“There is some serious momentum for twins and punters are backing it at whatever price we put up,” said William Hill royal correspondent Rupert de Quincey Adams, as the odds for royal twins were cut from an original 33/1 to 7/1.
With Queen Elizabeth II having celebrated her diamond jubilee this year, bookies are betting on the new baby being named Elizabeth – William Hill has been cut odds of the baby being named Elizabeth from 25/1 to 10/1 joint favourite alongside Victoria and George. Ladbrokes, however, has given Elizabeth an edge with 7/1 odds and Frances, John, Charles and George are second with 10/1.
Bookies are also accepting bets on who William and Kate will ask to be godparents of their child, with Prince Harry and Catherine’s sister Pippa their favourite to take on the task. William’s cousin Zara 8/1, footballer David Beckham 25/1 and Prime Minister David Cameron 50/1 are in the running too.
“Becks loves children and I am sure he would make a fine godfather,” said a William Hill spokesman said.
Betting has also started on the day of the birth, time of the birth, weight of the baby at birth, the type of birth Kate will opt for and even the magazine which will get exclusive first pictures of the royal baby.