christening-differences

The big differences between Prince Louis' christening and that of his siblings Prince George and Princess Charlotte

Prince William and Kate's son will be baptised on Monday 9 July

Ainhoa Barcelona

On Monday afternoon, the royal family will be out in full force to attend the christening of baby Prince Louis. The youngest of the Cambridge children will be baptised in a private ceremony with his parents Prince William and Kate proudly looking on. While the 40-minute service will be steeped in royal tradition, from the holy water used to the gown the baby will wear, there are some big notable differences to this service compared to when Prince George and Princess Charlotte were baptised in 2013 and 2015.

Everything you need to know about Prince Louis' christening:

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The Queen and Prince Philip will not attend

The biggest surprise is that Louis' great-grandparents, the Queen and Prince Philip, will be noticeably absent. Royal watchers had expected the 92-year-old monarch and her 97-year-old husband to make an appearance, but Buckingham Palace confirmed on Monday morning, just hours before the service, that the couple would not attend. The decision has not been made on health grounds and it is understood to have been mutually agreed by the Queen and the Cambridges some time ago.

On the day of the christening, Her Majesty will be travelling back to London from Norfolk, at the start of what will be a very busy week. The Queen will attend high-profile celebrations in central London marking the centenary of the RAF on Tuesday, and she will host US President Donald Trump in Windsor on Friday.

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The Queen and Prince Philip will not attend this year

Prince Harry and Pippa Middleton will have plus ones

While the Queen and Prince Philip will be no-shows, there will be some new, high-profile guests in the congregation. Prince Harry will be joined by his new wife the Duchess of Sussex, who he married in May and who was coincidentally christened at the same venue, St James's Palace, in March. Kate's sister Pippa Middleton will be accompanied by her husband James Matthews. The couple are expecting their first child this autumn.

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Pippa and Harry will be accompanied by their spouses

The location

Technically only a change from Princess Charlotte's christening, Prince Louis will be baptised at the Royal Chapel in St James's Palace – the same place where George was also christened. In contrast, Charlotte's christening was held at St. Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, where Princess Diana was also baptised. The reason was thought to be the church's close proximity to the Cambridges' home in 2015, which was Anmer Hall in Norfolk before they moved to London.

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Prince Louis is 11 weeks old

The timing

Unlike Charlotte, who was baptised on a Sunday morning, Louis' christening will take place in the afternoon on Monday 9 July. The statement released by Kensington Palace read: "The service will begin at 4pm and will last approximately 40 minutes." George was also baptised at a similar time in October 2013.

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