There are just days to go now before baby Cambridge number two makes their debut. Within hours of the announcement of the arrival of the newest member of the Royal Family there will be souvenirs in the shops ready to mark the big event. For the memorabilia that will commemorate the birth of William and Kate’s prince, or princess is lined up and ready to go.
While we may not know the gender, weight or name of the soon to be fourth in line to the throne we do know that there are already mugs, coins and plates all but on the shelves as Kate prepares to give birth. And as soon as Kensington Places makes the announcement, the race will be on to get those products on sale.
Amongst the memorabilia already confirmed is a coin by the Royal Mint. They were given permission to produce the special silver piece by The Queen following a meeting of the Privy Council in March.
Upon the birth of Prince George, the Royal Mint produced a commemorative silver coin costing £80 and a gold sovereign with a price tag of £800. The coins for the new baby will be different from that of their big brother as it will bear the new image of the Queen that will appear on British coins following its unveiling this year.
In 2013, the Royal Mint gave 2,013 special coins to babies born on the same day as Prince George and that commemorative event will be repeated on the new royal arrival. Just as before, parents of children delivered on the same day as Kate and William’s second baby will be able to register on the organisation’s Facebook page to be eligible to receive one of the free silver pennies.
And just like George, baby Cambridge number two will have their birth marked with several pieces of special china. The Royal Collection will unveil its memorabilia designs once the baby is born. Pottery firm Emma Bridgewater has confirmed it will be making a royal baby mug – in 2013, it came up with a cup saying ‘Hooray for George’. In February, the Duchess of Cambridge visited Emma Bridgewater in Staffordshire as it launched a mug to raise money for the East Anglia Children’s Hospice of which Kate is the patron.
It’s thought that the birth of Prince George, on 22 July 2013, to boosted retail sales by around £247 million. That figure is from the Centre for Retail Research which said the last royal baby helped up sales in a wide range of areas. Around £78 million was spent on souvenirs and £80 million on food and drink as people held impromptu parties to celebrate the birth of a future king.
The same centre doesn’t expect the latest royal baby to have quite the same effect on the High Street. Professor Joshua Bamfield said that this time round they were expecting a boost of around £60 to £70 million, partly because this little Cambridge won’t be born to wear a crown. ‘It’s not so much of a major event when you have another baby’, said Professor Bamfield.
Bamfield added that the new little royal will continue to have an impact on the High Street for years to come. Noting that the latest prince or princess will have an effect on clothes sales similar to the ones dubbed the ‘Kate Effect’ and the ‘George Effect’. “When the baby has a certain sweater on, everybody will want to buy that. The impact of the baby is going to be the longer period – particularly if it’s a girl – the equipment they use, her clothes, her toys,” he said.
In the short term, though there are already plenty of ways lined up to commemorate the birth of the new baby. And just like every other member of the Royal Family, this little prince or princess will soon have a coin, a mug and a plate with the name proudly written upon it.
photo credit: 2011 Royal Tour: Calgary – WAN_3296 via Flickr