Royal nannies through the years. Will Kate and Wills hire one for Baby Cambridge?



The role of the Royal nanny has changed dramatically over the years. Once a 'second mother' in the Royal nursery, younger, more modern members of the family firm have adopted a much more relaxed, low key approach to nannies and child carers in recent years.

And it seems Kate and William are taking that idea a step further. They are said to have shunned the idea of a full-time nanny, opting instead to advertise and hire a general housekeeper, who can help out with George when needed, but also keep their home and admin in order.

The role - filled earlier his year by the Queen's former housemaid Antonella Fresolone - includes laundry, silver polishing and dog walking.

A generation ago each of these jobs would require a separate member of staff.

But not on the Duke and Duchess's watch – they are determined to be hands-on. It's a trend which started with Prince William's mother Diana, who championed working mums by carrying out royal duties with two children in tow, and made every effort to do school runs and be there for sports days.

She is said to have complained when William's first nanny, Barbara Barnes, acted too much like a mother to her son - something that was previously an accepted fact of Royal nannies.

Following his divorce from Diana, Charles hired Tiggy Legge-Bourke as a new nanny for William and Harry, and she was widely criticised in the press for referring to the boys as her 'babies'.

William and Harry, however, have remained close to Tiggy. Her son Tom was a page boy at the Royal wedding, and Harry is godfather to her older son, Fred.

So while William was surrounded by nannies as much as his parents, what about Kate?

Brought up by parents Carole and Mike Middleton, Kate was close to her siblings Pippa and James, and the family did not employ a nanny. The Duchess is said to favour family members, particularly her mother Carole, for childcare, and is expected to rely on them rather than a full-time employee.

But when she returns to Royal duties, and William back to work in the RAF, will things change?

See Royal nannies through the years with our gallery below...