Prince George birthday LIVE: Kate faces ‘hideous’ choice as future King turns 8 today | Royal | News

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In a heart-warming photo taken by his mother, the Duchess of Cambridge, the future king can be seen sitting on the bonnet of a Land Rover Defender – an off-road vehicle synonymous with his great-grandfather Prince Phillip. Prince Philip, who died in April a few months before his 100th birthday, famously adored the Land Rovers which he regularly drove. During his funeral, the Duke’s coffin was carried by a specially adapted defender which he helped to design.

The photo of young Prince George will be seen as a poignant tribute to the late Duke, who had a passion for engineering.

The young prince, who is casually dressed in a polo-style striped top and shorts, can be seen beaming at Kate behind the camera in the new birthday photograph.

The image was taken outdoors earlier this month in Norfolk, where the Cambridges have their family home, Anmer Hall, not far from the Queen’s Sandringham residence.

The Duchess is a keen photographer and regularly produces well-loved photos of Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis to commemorate milestones in her children’s lives.

However, eight years old means Prince George has now reached the same age at which his father Prince William and uncle Prince Harry were carted off to boarding school.

Now that Prince George has reached this milestone, the controversial question has arisen whether the Cambridges will decide to send their son away to boarding school like his father and grandfather before him.

Ludgrove School, where both William and Harry went at age eight, is still considered a top choice, according to Tatler’s annual school guide.

Both Prince William and his wife Kate struggled in their own boarding school years and Princess Diana would send the young Prince William letters daily addressed to “Darling Wombat”.

READ MORE: ‘Most important life lesson’: How Kate and William prepped George

Prince George has spent the past 12 months living life under lockdown with his siblings and parents and has experienced some unusual things.

Kate has confessed she has been cutting her children’s hair, telling a group of parents in January: “I’ve become a hairdresser this lockdown, much to my children’s horror, seeing mum cutting hair.”

This special time together is likely to make the decision to send their son away for education an even more hideous one.

Indeed, royal expert Daniela Elser said: “For the first time, the question has reared its controversial head over whether the Cambridges might decide to send their own son away to school now he’s reached this particular milestone moment.”

Writing for news.com.au, she added: “For most people the very notion of sending a child away borders on the cruel but the British upper classes have, for centuries, firmly believed in dispatching their scions to receive an early introduction to Latin verbs, frigid, predawn rugby scrums and a diet of grey, overcooked vegetables. While that sort of thinking might seem hideously archaic today, this particular aristocratic predilection remains as strong today as it ever was.”

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