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George pictures a 'thank you' for privacy from press

The release of intimate snaps of Prince George are the royal family's way of saying "thank you" to the press for respecting his parent's wish for privacy.

Royal commentator Robert Jobson said: "I think what's important about these photographs is that the royal family have released them in acknowledgement that the paparazzi have allowed Prince George to grow up without intrusion. And I think that's very much a thank you in a way."

ITV News Correspondent Harry Smith has this report:

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William and Kate set to make whistle-stop New York trip

Prince William and Kate will make a quick three-day trip to New York next month, which will see the couple visit the September 11 memorial and watch an NBA basketball game.

The royals will arrive in the US on December 7 and return to the UK two days later for a first trip to America since their visit to California in 2011.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will travel to New York for the first time as a couple, though son Prince George will stay at home. Credit: Chris Jackson/PA Wire

William will also fly to Washington DC on the trip's middle day to attend a wildlife conference, while the pregnant Duchess will remain in New York to visit a local child development centre with city mayor Bill de Blasio's wife Chirlane McCray.

The list of engagements includes the NBA game as the basketball league supports the wildlife initiatives which the prince is involved with.

William and Kate ask photographers to stop 'following' George

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have written to two photographers, asking them to stop "harassing and following" Prince George and his nanny.

The Royal couple described the photographers' actions as Credit: PA Wire

The complaint comes after an individual was seen last week "in the vicinity" of the young Royal, Buckingham Palace said, adding that there is reason to suspect George's daily routines may have been subject to "surveillance and monitoring" for some time.

The individual has previously been spoken to on a number of occassions by protection officers about his behaviour in respect to other members of the Royal family, according to Palace officials.

A spokesperson said: "The Duke and Duchess understand the particular public role that Prince George will one day inherit but while he is young, he must be permitted to lead as ordinary a life as possible.

"No parent would tolerate the suspicion of someone pursuing and harassing their child and carer whilst their child is playing in a public park or going about their daily activities."

Will and Kate flat refurb costs public more than £4m

Kensington Palace shown surrounded by scaffolding last year. Credit: Friso Gentsch/DPA

The taxpayer cost of refurbishing William and Kate's family home was £3.4 million last year, official figures show.

The 20-plus roomed apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable.

Around £1.1 million was spent on the property the previous year, taking the total to prepare it for the couple and their son Prince George to move in to more than £4m excluding the work to remove asbestos.

Royal household sources said the apartment had required a "complete refit" and had problems such as no running water but the spending on it was now complete.

Furniture and fittings in the home, which is understood to have around 20 rooms, were met privately by the couple as well as a kitchen and they were said to be "at pains" to "bear down" on public costs.

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William and Kate brew whisky during tour of Scotland

Hundreds of excited locals greeted the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on their tour of the Strathearn area of Scotland - which is near St Andrews where the pair first met as students.

William and Kate, known as the Earl and Countess of Strathearn north of the border, began their day with a visit to Strathearn Community Campus in Crieff, where they met representatives of local volunteer groups.

Hundreds of excited locals and schoolchildren waved Saltires and Union flags to greet the royal couple. Credit: PA

The royal couple got a taste of Scotland's national drink and were given the chance to bottle their own Glenturret malt during a tour of the country's oldest distillery, near Crieff in Perthshire.

The Duchess wore a coral and red striped coat by Scottish designer Jonathan Saunders and a dress by Goat which she topped off with a celtic brooch she recieved as a wedding gift.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge try some whisky during a tour of The Famous Grouse Distillery in Crieff, Scotland. Credit: PA

This trip is the couple's first joint engagement since returning from a tour of Australia and New Zealand last month, and on this occasion their young son Prince George did not join them.

Call royal baby David, says Beckham

David Beckham believes the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be "amazing" parents and has helped out the couple by suggesting a name for the new royal arrival.

"David's pretty good ... if it's a boy of course, " he recommended

David Beckham said pal William is an "unbelievable gentleman" Credit: Gouhier-Guibbaud-JMP/ABACA

The football star struck up a friendship with William when the pair joined forces to lobby for London's Olympic bid in 2007.

In an interview with Sky News, Beckham said: "They're going to be amazing parents because they are so loving towards children.

"We've seen William grow from that young boy into an unbelievable gentleman. And that as a father is really important."

Odds slashed on royal baby being named James

Bookmakers Ladbrokes have slashed the odds on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child being named James.

Following "an unprecedented amount of bets" placed yesterday, the odds have fallen from 20/1 to just 6/1, Ladbrokes said.

One punter in London could make £4,000 from a £200 bet should the Duchess give birth to a little Prince James.

The odds have been slashed on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child being named James. Credit: Arthur Edwards/The Sun/PA Wire

The odds on William and Kate having a girl are at 2/5 compared to 7/4 for a boy.

Alexandra and Victoria remain the favourite for a flutter at 4/1 each, while James and Charlotte are at 6/1 and Elizabeth is 8/1. George rounds up the top five royal baby names with 10/1 odds.

Topping the date of birth bets are 13 and 14 July - which both have odds of 8/1.

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