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Prince Louis' life in pictures — from rarely-seen royal to cheeky show-stealing favourite

NewsPrince Louis' life in pictures — from rarely-seen royal to cheeky show-stealing favourite

Prince George talks to Louis at Sandringham Church service

Prince Louis, the youngest child of Prince William and his wife Kate, Princess of Wales, celebrates his fifth birthday on Sunday, April 23. The youngster, who is fourth in line to the throne, has played a more prominent role in the last 12 months, marking several major milestones including participating in the Trooping the Colour carriage procession, attending the traditional Christmas Day church service for the first time and making his Easter Sunday debut. It marked a huge step up for Louis who, prior to last year, was rarely seen in public. Now, Express.co.uk takes a look at how far Prince Louis has come in the last five years, looking back at his life in pictures.


Prince Louis was born on April 23, 2018 (Image: Getty)

First glimpse

In keeping with tradition, the Prince and Princess of Wales introduced their newborn to the world shortly after his birth. Standing outside The Lindo Wing at St Mary’s Hospital in London, where each of their three children was born, Kate and William gave the public their first glimpse of Prince Louis.

Born on April 23, 2018, he was named Prince Louis Arthur Charles of Wales, with each of his monikers steeped in meaning.

Louis is actually one of both his brother Prince George’s and father William’s middle names and was notably the first name of Lord Mountbatten, King Charles III’s godfather.

Meanwhile, Arthur is a popular name among the royals not to mention Charles’s and Prince Harry’s middle name. And, of course, Charles, Louis’s third name seems like a pretty clear reference to his grandfather, the reigning monarch.


Kate and William standing outside The Lindo Wing at St Mary’s Hospital with newborn Louis (Image: Getty)

Royal christening

Less than three months after his birth, Louis was christened at the Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace.

The Prince and Princess of Wales followed in the footsteps of generations of the Royal Family by having their youngest child baptised in the London chapel’s historic surroundings.

Kate and William, along with their children, were joined by several other members of the Royal Family including Charles and his wife Queen Camilla, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, as well as Kate’s parents, Michael and Carole Middleton, and her siblings.

The service was conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury and had several nods to royal history; Louis wore a replica of the Royal Christening Robe, which was made in 1841 and has been worn by royals ever since; he was baptised in The Lily Font, a silver font commissioned for Queen Victoria and Prince Albert’s first child, which also saw its first use in 1841 and — in a special tribute to Kate and William — one of the three top tiers of the couple’s eight-tier wedding cake was used for the Christening cake.


Prince Louis was christened on July 9, 2018 (Image: Getty)

Christening Of Prince Louis Of Cambridge At St James's Palace

The family of five were photographed together on the special day (Image: Getty)

Balcony debut

Louis made his Buckingham Palace debut for the Trooping the Colour Parade, which marks the reigning monarch’s official birthday, in June 2019.

Ahead of the RAF flyover, Louis could be seen peering through the Palace windows with his brother and sister Princess Charlotte to try and catch a glimpse of their father in the parade.

The one-year-old later appeared on the balcony, wearing a blue and white outfit, previously worn by his father and his uncle, Prince Harry, when they were children.

Reports at the time said the youngster stole the show, with many pointing out his furious waving at the crowds and his seeming fascination with the flypast.

Unbeknownst at the time, it marked one of the youngster’s final public appearances for over a year.


Louis and Charlotte were spotted peering out the windows (Image: Getty)

Trooping The Colour 2019

The youngster was spotted waving to the crowds of well-wishers (Image: Getty)

Life in lockdown

Louis celebrated two of his birthdays in a coronavirus lockdown, meaning his early years were unlike any other members of the Royal Family and his public appearances were fewer and farther between than his older brother and sister.

Ahead of the first lockdown in March 2020, the Waleses left their Kensington Palace home and headed to their countryside base, Amner Hall in Norfolk.

On April 23, Louis’s second birthday, the family of five featured in the BBC Children In Need and Comic Relief ‘Big Night In at London, with footage showing the royals clapping outside their door for the NHS.

Dressed in coordinating shades of blue, the Waleses took part in what became a weekly show of gratitude to health workers fighting coronavirus on the frontline.

Eight months later, in December 2020, the family made their first public appearance in over a year to once again support the NHS. They attended a special pantomime performance of The National Lottery’s Pantoland at London’s Palladium Theatre.

BBC Children In Need and Comic Relief 'Big Night In'

The Waleses clap for NHS carers as part of the BBC Children In Need and Comic Relief ‘Big Night In’ (Image: Getty)


Kate with Louis and Charlotte at the special pantomime performance (Image: Getty)

‘Iconic as always!’

It wasn’t until June 2022 that Louis made his next public appearance — and it was his most major one to date.

Alongside his two siblings, the then-four-year-old rode by carriage in the Trooping the Colour procession to mark the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

Sitting in the middle of George and Charlotte, Louis waved at the huge crowds who had gathered to celebrate his great-grandmother’s 70-year reign, smiling but occasionally appearing bemused by the masses of people.

The three Wales children later appeared on the Buckingham Palace balcony for the flypast, a moment that saw Louis visibly dart from one emotion to the next.

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Trooping The Colour

George, Charlotte and Louis rode by carriage in the procession (Image: Getty)

Louis managed to steal the show when he appeared on the balcony for the iconic royal appearance, which was carried out in full swing for the first time since 2019.

In a particularly memorable moment, the Prince howled and covered his ears as the planes flew overhead, as the Queen, known to him as his “Gan Gan”, leaned down and pointed out the impressive spectacle.

While at times Louis appeared concerned by the happenings around him, he was also photographed smiling, seemingly enjoying the celebrations.

At one point, Louis could be seen exchanging a few words with his great-grandmother, with a lipreader telling the Mirror the young prince was eager to know one thing.

According to Jeremy Freeman, an expert in lipreading, Louis asked: “Are the Red Arrows coming?” To which the Queen replied: “I hope so.”


Louis appeared to be unprepared for the loud volume of the flypast (Image: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Trooping The Colour

The Queen and her great-grandson were spotted exchanging a few words (Image: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Trooping The Colour

Louis seemed to go through a range emotions during the flyover (Image: Getty)

Later during the weekend, a colourful street pageant celebrating Queen Elizabeth II’s life, and highlighting Britain’s diversity, paraded through central London.

In reaction, Louis could be seen clenching his fists, sticking his tongue out and waving his arms in the air. The Prince even stood on his seat to get a better view of the parade.

However, throughout the three-hour-long proceedings, Louis grew restless and moved from lap to lap, with King Charles spotted bobbing the youngster on his knee and pointing out interesting things to keep his grandson entertained.

Social media saw a flurry of comments on his appearance, with one writing: “Prince Louis being iconic as always.”

Another admitted the Prince may have stolen the limelight from Her Majesty, saying: “A fantastic celebration of a truly wonderful lady, however, Prince Louis stole the show.”

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Platinum Pageant

Louis seemed to enjoy the pageant for the most part (Image: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Platinum Pageant

Once again, the Prince’s cheeky faces made him the star of the show (Image: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Platinum Pageant

Charles took responsibility of keeping the youngster entertained at one point during the parade (Image: Getty)

‘Future of the monarchy’ 

To close the Jubilee celebrations, Queen Elizabeth II was joined on the Palace balcony by Charles and Camilla, William and Kate, and the three Wales children.

At that moment, the Queen was “sending a clear message about the future of the monarchy,” a royal expert claimed.

Royal expert Phil Dampier revealed the appearance of the children was “very significant”, explaining it showed “an image of a loving extended family”.

He told the Mail at the time: “The fact that the three children were standing on the balcony at the end with the Queen sent out a clear message that they are the future and that there are three kings in waiting.”

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Platinum Pageant

The three Wales children stood alongside their parents for the significant moment (Image: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee 2022 - Platinum Pageant

‘The Queen sent out a clear message that they are the future,’ said Mr Dampier (Image: Getty)

First day of school

Last summer, the Waleses relocated from their home in Kensington Palace to Adelaide Cottage, a smaller residence in Windsor.

Their move was said to be in aid of Kate and William’s responsibilities ramping up, as well as a bid to maintain their children’s freedom and privacy.

George and Charlotte, therefore, transferred schools and Louis, who had turned four just a few months earlier, joined his siblings on the school run as he marked his first day.

The family was photographed arriving for a settling-in afternoon at Lambrook School, near Ascot on September 7, 2022.

Prince George, Princess Charlotte And Prince Louis Start Lambrook School

It marked the first time all three of the Wales children were attending the same school (Image: Getty)

Prince George, Princess Charlotte And Prince Louis Start Lambrook School

Louis embarked on his first day of primary school (Image: Getty)

Christmas at Sandringham

Last year, the Royal Family marked their first Christmas without Queen Elizabeth II.

In a bid to uphold tradition and continuity, King Charles celebrated the festive season at Sandringham, his mother’s beloved Norfolk estate which became the backdrop for royal Christmases.

It also marked the first time Louis joined his family at the Christmas Day church service. All three of the Prince and Princess of Wales’s children joined the Royal Family as they returned to their public, festive gathering for the first time since 2019.

Louis held his mother’s hand as the family made their walk, occasionally lagging slightly behind his older siblings.

King Charles III Celebrates First Christmas As Monarch With Royal Family

The Royal Family celebrated Christmas at Sandringham (Image: Getty)

King Charles III Celebrates First Christmas As Monarch With Royal Family

Louis receiving a painting of Paddington Bear during the traditional Christmas walkabout (Image: Getty)

King Charles III Celebrates First Christmas As Monarch With Royal Family

It marked Louis’ first time joining the royals at the Christmas service (Image: Getty)

Royal Easter debut

Earlier this month, Louis marked another royal first; he finally made his Easter service debut alongside the rest of his family.

Louis clutched his mother’s hand as he walked alongside his parents and his older siblings into St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.

The Wales family arrived as a united force, all matching in a blue colour palette.

Royal fans pointed out that Prince Louis is “growing up fast” and body language expert Judi James noted “his much more serious and well-behaved body language.”

She told The Mirror: “As he strode out, glancing confidently at the fans, Kate glanced down at her son then looked up with a grin of pride that converted to a wide smile at the crowds.”

The British Royal Family Attend Easter Mattins Service

Louis and Kate arriving at the Easter Sunday Service in Windsor (Image: Getty)


The Waleses attended the service alongside several other senior royals (Image: Getty)

The British Royal Family Attend Easter Mattins Service

It is understood that Louis was deemed too young to attend in previous years (Image: Getty)

Louis’ most recent appearance came less than two months before the Coronation of his grandfather King Charles.

Although his attendance has not officially been confirmed, many are hoping the youngest member of the Wales family will be there to witness the momentous event.

Reflecting on the Prince’s memorable moments in the past, Newsweek’s chief royal correspondent Jack Royston and Getty royal photographer Chris Jackson speculated that Louis could be the “star of the show”.

During an episode of Newsweek‘s The Royal Report podcast, Mr Jackson said: “We’ll never forget those moments with Prince Louis at the pageant and on the balcony. He was really, really was the star of the show. So, yeah, fingers crossed, we will see him again in the coronation.”

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