Like a lot of families, the Royals are big fans of making a fuss of one another on social media when it comes to a special occasion – and today it's all about Prince George! Yup, the future King (and eldest of Prince William and Kate Middleton's three children) turned eight today, and his grandfather, Prince Charles, and great-grandmother, The Queen, have posted sweet well wishes for the youngster on Instagram.
To celebrate, as has become tradition over the years, the Cambridges shared a new photograph of George with the general public, taken by The Duchess (a keen photographer) herself. Usually the new snap is released on the eve of their child's birthday and this year was no different, with eager royal enthusiasts delighted to see the new image of Prince George sat grinning on a Land Rover Defender, looking rather cheeky.
Kicking things off with an Instagram Story, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla's official account (@clarencehouse) re-shared the newly released portrait, and added the words "A VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO PRINCE GEORGE!" to it, along with a red balloon emoji:
The official Royal Family Instagram account followed up shortly afterwards, with another Stories post, again featuring the same newly released portrait of the young Prince.
This time, the caption read: "WISHING PRINCE GEORGE A VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY TODAY", and was accompanied by a couple of fun birthday-themed gifs (including some wiggly balloons). Why does the thought of The Queen writing that, then selected said gifs herself, fill us with so much joy though? I mean, it's highly likely her comms team are responsible for the message, but it's such a fun thing to picture Her Majesty scrolling through all the options before deciding 'Yup, these balloons are the ones!'.
George's eighth birthday in particular could go down in history as it's an especially significant one for the young royal – as it's the age that his father, grandfather and great-grandfather all started boarding school.
Many royal commentators are currently speculating as to whether or not the future king will be following in their footsteps and leaving his present school, St Thomas's in Battersea, and heading off to start life as a boarder too.
As we all know, the royals are stickler for tradition, so it's not entirely far-fetched (even if it does sound like Prince George is pretty happy at St Thomas's); the Duke of Cambridge was sent off to board at Ludgrove School in Berkshire after his eighth birthday, as was Prince Harry when he reached the same age. George's grandfather, Prince Charles, attended Cheam School, in Hampshire, following in the footsteps of his own father, Prince Philip, who - you've guessed it - took up his place at the same boarding school aged eight.
On that note, watch this space – and on other (far more important note today), may we take this opportunity to wish Prince George a very fun-filled, jolly birthday!
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