The Royal Family Twitter account, which represents the Queen and all the other senior royals who don’t have their own social media handles, publicly marked the birthday of Prince George. The account wrote: “Wishing Prince George a very happy 8th birthday today!”
Clarence House, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall’s official Twitter account, wrote: “A very Happy Birthday to Prince George!”
Both these messages included the picture of George released yesterday evening by Kensington Palace.
The snap was taken by Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, earlier this month at Anmer Hall, the Cambridges’ residence in Norfolk.
It depicts the beaming boy in a £10 John Lewis polo shirt and a pair of blue shorts.
The portrait is believed to also pay tribute to Prince Philip, as it shows Prince George sitting on the bonnet of a Land Rover Defender.
The Duke of Edinburgh, who died on April 9, regularly drove vehicles by the British 4×4 brand.
During his funeral, the Duke’s coffin was carried from Windsor Castle to St George’s Chapel on a specially adapted Defender he had helped design.
This birthday may mark a major change in the life of Prince George.
After turning eight, his father William and uncle Harry left their preparatory school to attend a boarding school – Ludgrove.
Royal experts have been discussing whether the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will soon change his school or will leave him to attend Thomas’s Battersea until he is 13.
Royal author Duncan Larcombe told OK! magazine: “It’s my understanding for some time, possibly even before George was even born, was that William was quite keen that any child he had wouldn’t be packed off to boarding school.
“Eton for William and Harry wasn’t an unhappy time, apart from the fact it was when their mother died, which means William doesn’t blame the school or the experience of boarding.
“But he’s never intended to have his kids as full-time boarders and if George does go to a school that offers it, he’ll likely be a day boarder”.
Royal commentator Ingrid Seward believes Kate and William may break with tradition if their son doesn’t seem keen on leaving his home next September.
“I think they’ll wait to see how the children’s personalities develop, and take into consideration whether or not they would be happy to live away from home.”
Another royal commentator, Daniela Elser, said sending Prince George to a boarding school could “be a dicey move”.
She wrote in a comment piece for news.com.au: “If William and Kate did choose Ludgrove or a school of a similar ilk, it would dash once and for all any pretence of him being raised even vaguely outside of the loftiest of social echelons.
“Rationally we might know that George is not like other third-graders but him being shunted off to board would very, very visibly remind the world of his class status.
“The Duke and Duchess, the message would be, want their son educated alongside the future Dukes, Earls and sons of the global uber-wealthy that these sorts of schools attract.”