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Wednesday 12th December 2018

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their first child!

Congratulations!

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed they are expecting their first child!

A statement from Kensington Palace on Monday morning confirmed that former actress Meghan, 37, is pregnant with their first baby.

The baby will be seventh in line to the throne.

Harry and Meghan are expecting a baby! (Credit: Splash)

Read more: Meghan Markle's dad Thomas says she's always wanted children

Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Sussex is expecting a baby in the Spring of 2019.

The palace said: "Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Sussex is expecting a baby in the Spring of 2019.

"Their Royal Highnesses have appreciated all of the support they have received from people around the world since their wedding in May and are delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public."

Speculation that Meghan was pregnant began swirling on Friday when she attended Princess Eugenie's wedding to Jack Brooksbank wearing a loose fitting coat.

The new royal was seen slipping quickly into the chapel alongside her husband and didn't remove her coat throughout the wedding ceremony.

Meghan pictured at Princess Eugenie's wedding on Friday (Credit: Gareth Fuller - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Meghan and Harry were congratulated by senior members of the royal family at the wedding after revealing their happy news.

A spokesperson said: "The Queen, Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, and Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are delighted for the couple and were able to congratulate them on Friday at the wedding in person."

Meghan reportedly told the royal family at Eugenie's wedding on Friday (Credit: Splash)

The added that Meghan's mother, Doria Ragland, is "very happy about the lovely news and she looks forward to welcoming her first grandchild."

The happy pregnancy announcement was made just as Meghan and Harry, 34, touched down in Sydney, Australia for the start of their first overseas tour as a married couple.

Meghan's mum Doria is said to be "very happy" to become a first-time grandmother (Credit: Steve Parsons - Pool / Getty Images)

Further speculation that a pregnancy announcement was imminent came after Meghan emerged from the airport clutching purple folders across her stomach.

They are in the country for Harry's Invictus Games 2018, which run from October 20 to October 28.

Meghan sent the rumour mill swirling by concealing her stomach with purple files on arrival in Sydney on Monday (Credit: Media-Mode / SplashNews.com)

They will then travel on to New Zealand, Tonga and Fiji for further engagements.

A palace spokesperson said the couple had sought medical advice on their travel plans following Meghan's pregnancy news and would proceed as originally intended, despite Zika being present in Fiji and Tonga.

Harry and Meghan pictured after their May 19 wedding (Credit: Leon Neal/Getty Images)

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's child won't automatically become a prince or princess, despite Harry himself being a prince.

It's because a Letters Patent issued by Harry's great-great grandfather King George V in 1917 limited which members of the royal family could receive a title.

He said: "The grandchildren of the sons of any such Sovereign in the direct male line (save only the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales) shall have and enjoy in all occasions the style and title enjoyed by the children of Dukes of these Our Realms."

Meghan and Harry's child won't automatically become a HRH (Credit: Splashnews.com)

It means that any children Harry and Meghan have won't automatically get the title HRH unless The Queen steps in and issues a new Letters Patent to change that.

She did that for The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's children, Princess Charlotte, three, and Prince Louis, who was born in April.

The couple's eldest son, Prince George, was always entitled to be HRH as he's the eldest son of the eldest son (William) of the Prince of Wales (Charles).

But while Kate was pregnant with George, The Queen issued a Letters Patent declaring all of William and Kate's future children were entitled to use HRH.

George was always entitled to be HRH because his dad William is the eldest son of the Prince of Wales (Credit: Brian Lawless - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

If The Queen doesn't step in this time, then Harry and Meghan's first child will likely be known as the Earl of Dumbarton if it's a boy or Lady Mountbatten-Windsor if it's a girl.

Future sons would be known as Lord Mountbatten-Windsor.

Harry and Meghan may decide not to give their children titles like the Princess Royal did with her children, Peter and Zara, who were raised as Peter and Zara Phillips.

The Queen issued a Letters Patent to ensure Charlotte and her brother Louis could be princess and prince (Credit: Steve Parsons - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Meghan's father, Thomas Markle, had predicted in June that a pregnancy would be announced quickly after the wedding.

Thomas, who did not attend the Royal Wedding and is believed to have not met Harry yet, told ITV's Good Morning Britain: "She has wanted children for a long time. And when she met Harry she spoke about how much she loved him and so there has to be a child in the making somewhere soon."

It's yet to be confirmed whether Thomas was told before the news was made public.

Meghan's father has said she's wanted children for a long time (Credit: Splash)

Harry, meanwhile, has spoken in the past about his desire to start a family.

In an interview with Sky News in 2015, he said: "Of course, I would love to have kids right now, but there's a process that one has to go through and... tours like this are great fun.

"Hopefully I'm doing all right by myself. It would be great to have someone else next to me to share the pressure. But, you know, time will come and whatever happens, happens."

Harry said in 2015 he would "love" to have a family (Credit: Splash)

Princess Diana's former psychic, Sally Morgan, had also predicted a baby announcement sooner rather than later.

She told ITV's Loose Women in September: " I think by the end of the year it will be announced she's expecting a baby."

Read more: The Duchess of Sussex looks elegant at Princess Eugenie's wedding 

The couple have plenty of experience being around children, as Harry's brother, The Duke of Cambridge, is a proud dad of three.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will no doubt be on hand to offer advice (Credit: Splashnews)

William and wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, are parents to son George, five, daughter Charlotte, three, and baby Louis, who was born in April.

Congratulations to Meghan and Harry!

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