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High praise for Michael Middleton's photographs

The Duchess of Cambridge's parents Carole and Michael Middleton leave the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in London. Credit: Anwar Hussein/EMPICS Entertainment

Michael Middleton follows a long line of photographers to have captured important images of members of the royal family.

Little is known about how much experience the British Airways flight dispatcher-turned-businessman has behind the lens, but as the first official photographs to be taken of the future king, the pictures are sure to have their place in history.

The intimate family portraits were taken in the garden of the Middleton family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire, earlier this month and for Mr Middleton, they are not only of a future monarch but of his first grandchild.

Martin Keene, head of pictures at the Press Association, said the photographs were impressive. "Any photographer would have been pleased to have taken them," he said.

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Kate's father captured first official pictures of George

The first official photographs of Prince George have been released. Lying peacefully in the arms of the Duchess of Cambridge, the newborn, who is third in line to the throne, seems to be sleeping in the pictures.

Watch: Prince William describes Prince George as a "little bit of a rascal"

The intimate pictures were taken by Kate's father Michael Middleton in a shady spot of the garden of the family home in Bucklebury, Berkshire, earlier this month.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge with Prince George. Credit: Michael Middleton/PA Wire
The Duchess of Cambridge cradles a sleeping Prince George. Credit: Michael Middleton/PA Wire

First official photograph of Prince George with his parents

Family portrait taken in the garden of the Middleton family home in Bucklebury Credit: Michael Middleton/PA Wire/Press Association Images

This is the first official family picture of Prince George with his parents and family dog Lupo. It was taken by Kate Middleston's father, Michael Middleton at his home in Bucklebury in Berkshire, earlier this month.

Michael Middleton follows a long line of photographers to have captured important images of members of the royal family.

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Wills plays polo as he waits for baby

The Duke of Cambridge enjoyed a game of polo as the wait continues for the Duchess to give birth to their first child.

Duke of Cambridge
The Duke of Cambridge with Prince Harry at a charity polo match Credit: PA Images

William was on the opposite team to his brother, Prince Harry, at the event held at musical impresario Andrew Lloyd Webber's Berkshire estate yesterday.

It's not far from Bucklebury, Kate's family home. Her parents still live there and it's where she plans to stay after baby's arrival.

Parents-in-waiting
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge Credit: PA Images

Andrew Lloyd Webber's event - called the Kent and Curwen Royal Charity Polo Cup - was held in aid of Sentebale and the Tusk Trust charities, which the Princes support.

Harry's team won the game with a last-minute goal, and he was awarded the most valuable player award.

Meanwhile bookmakers Coral said the odds on Kate giving birth today had shortened from 5/1 to 4/1 after a flurry of bets.

National

Final chapter in search and rescue

The closing chapter began today in the history of Britain's Sea King search and rescue helicopters - with the announcement that the service will be sold to an American company.

For thirty five years they have provided life saving help and for the past four - a job for Prince William.

ITV News Royal Correspondent Tim Ewart looks back on the Sea King's finest hours.

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