• Kate suffering from acute morning sickness
• Royal couple forced to go public
• UK Prime Minister tweets his delight
• New baby expected next year
• NZ sends its congratulations
Prince William has made a plea for people to keep things in perspective after a mini media frenzy greeted the news that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are having another baby.
Britain's Prince William said he was "thrilled" that his wife Kate is pregnant with their second child, but admitted it had been a "tricky few days" as she struggles with severe morning sickness.
Kate cancelled an official engagement today because she is suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, the same condition that caused her to be hospitalised in 2012 when she was pregnant with her first child Prince George.
She is being treated inside Kensington Palace this time, rather than a private hospital where press had previously waited outside for updates.
"The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Cambridge is expecting their second child," tweeted Clarence House late last night NZ time.
A statement from Kensington Palace said that the Queen and members of the royal family are "delighted with the news".
William: 'We're thrilled'
"We're immensely thrilled, it's great news, early days but I'm hoping that things settle down, she feels a bit better," said Prince William today during an official visit to open the Dickson Poon University of Oxford China Centre Building. His wife pulled out of the engagement due her sickness.
"She's feeling ok," he continued. "It's been a tricky few days, week or so. I'm going to go back and look after her now."
The prince then made a plea which he no doubt knew would be widely ignored.
Prince William talks to Beth Barton. Photo / AFP
"It's important that we all focus on the big news and the big international and domestic things that are going on at the moment," the 32-year-old said.
Kate's schedule thrown into doubt
Kensington Palace said the Duchess's attendance at forthcoming events would be decided on a "case-by-case" basis.
Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, and her husband Prince William as they give their son Prince George a stuffed toy of Australian animal called a Bilby. Photo / AP
She is scheduled to make her first official solo overseas tour to Malta from 20 September for two days.
She was also planning to support Harry at the opening of his Invictus Games for wounded military personnel in London tomorrow. A New Zealand team, with Victoria Cross recipient Willie Apiata as its patron, is participating in the games.
The Duchess had not yet passed her 12-week point, but the couple decided to make an announcement because of forthcoming public engagements which are now uncertain.
"There are a number of forthcoming engagements so we took the decision to be fully open about it at this point," a palace spokeswoman said. "One is the forthcoming visit to Malta and a decision on that will be taken closer to the time."
Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge with Prince George. Photo / AFP
There was a rush from around the world to congratulate the royal couple.
David Cameron tweeted his well wishes.
"Many congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. I'm delighted by the happy news that they're expecting another baby," he wrote.
NZ adds its congrats to the couple
Prime Minister John Key said New Zealanders would rejoice at the baby announcement.
"It's fabulous news and Kiwis will be excited for the happy couple," he said last night.
Prime Minister John Key with Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. Photo / Richard Robinson
The due date means the baby was conceived after the royal couple's visit to New Zealand in April.
Waikato woman Cynthia Read, whose crafted lace shawl was given to the couple as New Zealand's official gift for Prince George's birth, hoped they would keep the present for their second child. "I hope they're going to use it again."
Mrs Read said she had no plans to make another one. "They'll have to make do with a hand-me-down."
When the Duke later met Mrs Read on their NZ tour, he told her: "You might have to make another one soon."
This prompted the suggestion a sibling for George was on the cards.
Mrs Read revealed at the time: "The way William said it was like he was dropping a hint, letting me in on a secret." But later, she said she thought it was just a throw-away comment.
The Duchess gave birth to the couple's first child, Prince George of Cambridge, on 22 July last year.
New baby bumps Harry down the line
The new baby will be the fourth in line to the throne. He or she will not become a monarch, assuming the same role as Prince Harry.
Prince Harry seemed delighted at the thought of William suffering more sleepless nights.
Prince Harry. Photo / AFP
"It's very exciting news, I can't wait to see my brother suffer more," he told reporters.
"With any luck if it's a girl he'll suffer even greater I think and I'd love to see him try and cope with that."
The 29-year-old was visiting competitors training for his inaugural Invictus Games for wounded soldiers.
When it was put to Harry that the new addition to the royal family would further reduce his own chances of being King he laughed and replied: "Great!"
But jokes aside, William's younger brother also called for some restraint.
"I hope the two of them have the opportunity to go through the process again with a little bit of peace and quiet," Prince Harry said.
William's uncle, Earl Spencer, told London radio Kate's pregnancy was "such happy-making news".
Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, with her son Prince George. Photo / AFP
"I have never known a period of news where things have looked so dark and bleak around the world and to have this pop up is just fantastic," he said.
"It's just making the nation a happier place."
Late last night, quick off the mark, Irish bookmaker Paddy Power offered odds on the new baby's name. Elizabeth is favourite along with Henry and Victoria at 10/1, with Charlotte and Arthur also among the frontrunners at 12/1.
Some have questioned the timing of the couple's announcement, suggesting that it could sway the Scottish independence vote later this month.
Next article: Prince George embarks on his first royal walk-about
- UK Independent