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Harry & Meghan: A Royal Baby - Tonight

Photo: ITN

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who married in Windsor last May, are looking forward to welcoming their first child any day now. As we all wait to hear the news of this very special arrival, Tonight looks at what will make this royal baby unique, and whether it will herald a fresh start for the couple after some difficult recent headlines in the press.

Harry and Meghan were wed on the 19th of May, 2018. Credit: ITN

Baby Sussex will be seventh in line to the throne, and unlikely to ever become king or queen. However they will be one of a kind.

"This baby’s ancestry is extraordinary. On Meghan's side you've got the African American and American descent, going right back to the days of slavery, and on Harry's side you've got the Royal Family, you've got Henry the Eighth and his six wives. You go right the way back to William the Conqueror."

– Robert Lacey, Royal Historian

Unique they may be, but the new baby will still be subject to the centuries old law stating that only males can inherit peerages, meaning if Meghan and Harry have a daughter she won’t be able to inherit the same title as a son. Tonight met with Charlotte Carew-Pole, from campaign group Daughters’ Rights, who wants the law to be altered. Because 92 seats in the House of Lords are reserved for hereditary peers, she believes it’s something that needs to change.

Credit: ITV / Tonight

“It is discrimination, it’s a simple case. We are not endorsing hereditary peers we are certainly not endorsing the way the House of Lords is arranged, but that while this system exists, it is absolutely imperative that we change."

– Charlotte Carew Pole, Daughters’ Rights

The Sussexes have been subject to intense media attention from the moment Meghan arrived on the scene, but in recent months the coverage of the former TV star has gone from feeling largely positive to increasingly negative.

“When you're dealing with, what I call ‘AA list’ celebrities it's really tough. it's unforgiving… you’ve got to pick your battles, pick your moments. You enjoy the good days. You try to forget about the bad days.”

– Mark Borkowski, Borkowski PR
Credit: ITV / Tonight

But a new baby could signal a new start and a return to more positive headlines. Certainly royal baby fever has reached new heights as Meghan Markle has reached the final weeks of her pregnancy. One woman who’s had a taste of the media frenzy is Lauren Mishcon, who works as a ‘doula’; a non-medical birth companion. There were rumours that Meghan had added a modern twist to her birth plan and hired a doula, and Lauren was named in the press as the person who’d been chosen.

“My life kind of imploded, for a week, because once things are over the Internet, they spread like wildfire. By Thursday morning, it had been reported that I had been seen at Kensington Palace, and Clarence House. When, actually I'd just been at home, waiting for my dishwasher to be repaired.”

– Lauren Mishcon

Lauren Mishcon says that if Meghan is having a doula it definitely isn’t her.

Meghan is expected to give birth in the coming weeks, though the family have decided to keep plans private. Credit: ITN

Despite the desire for information about the pregnancy and upcoming birth, Harry and Meghan have chosen to keep most of the details private . Last week they used their new instagram account to reveal that they’ll only be announcing the birth after they’ve had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family. So the nation -and the rest of the world- can only do what all excited well-wishers do when a baby is on the way: wait!

'Harry & Meghan: A Royal Baby' is on ITV this evening at 7.30pm.