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William wears dark glasses as he and Kate are spirited into Windsor for Archie’s secret christening

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge made a discreet appearance at baby Archie’s christening today, as Meghan and Harry continue to face criticism over the ‘secret’ event. 

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Prince William, 37, donned dark glasses as he drove himself and Kate Middleton, 37, into the rear gates of Windsor Castle, shortly before the private ceremony began at 12pm.  

It is believed Prince Charles and Camilla were among some of the first of the 25 guests at the occasion, and landed in the grounds of the castle having flown via helicopter this morning. 

Prince Harry’s former nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke is also believed to have been in attendance at the private event, sparking speculation she could be one of the godparents.  

A handful of royals fans have gathered in Windsor and, though excited, some have suggested they have been left ‘disappointed’ that the public will not get to see any of the private ceremony or find out who has been chosen as godparents. 

As senior royals gather in Windsor, mystery remains surronding the private event, as well as those who have been chosen as godparents. 

Ingrid Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty magazine, suggested Prince Harry, 34, and Meghan Markle, 37, had ‘really upset the people who loved them the most’ with the move, telling the Daily Express they had ‘misinterpreted the whole situation’. 

Seward went on to reveal: ‘The secrecy and evasiveness of the whole situation has been so mismanaged. It’s a real shame.’ 

The royal couple have refused to reveal who their son’s godparents are despite billing the public £2.4million for renovations to Frogmore cottage. 

Prince William and Kate made a discreet entrance into the family event, taking the back entrance to drive into the Windsor Castle grounds. 

The royal couple, who were seen arriving shortly before the ceremony began at 12pm, appeared to be wearing blue in honour of the baby boy.  

Publicity expert Mark Borkowski also warned of growing backlash, saying: ‘This is what you’d expect a Hollywood A-lister to do – purposefully to be antagonist to the traditional system and not engaging with media in any shape or form.’ 

He pointed to the £2.4 million cost of the Frogmore Cottage renovation, and suggested the royal couple were ‘not making any friends’ with the move to keep Archie’s christening private. 

Even though there is thought to be little chance of the royals making an appearance, a handful of fans still lined the streets in the hopes of catching a glimpse of baby Archie. 

A group has gathered outside the castle, faithfully clutching banners plastered with the royal couple and their son’s face and waving flags, to show their support for the royal couple.

Stephen and Christina Shiels, from Northern Ireland, stood among the crowds with their five-year-old twins Chloe and Taylor.

Transport planner Stephen, 31, told MailOnline: ‘It’s great to be feel part of it. I would have preferred to see a bit more of the ceremony, it would have been better if it was a public event.’

The Yoreo family from Connecticut, USA, said they were huge royal fans and accepted Prince Harry and Meghan’s decision to hold the christening in private.

Kevin Yoreo told MailOnline: ‘We are all just so fascinated by the royal family, I think all Americans are. And not just because of Meghan has become part of it.

‘I respect their decision to conduct the christening in private. I’m sure they have to deal with a lot of fuss being part of the royal family.’

Wife Heather added: ‘I’m sorry that we are not going to see them [Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Prince Archie]. But I suppose this is an important day for them as a family.’

Ex-pat Briton Tony Foster told how he would have loved to see the new royal baby, Prince Archie, but was not upset at the decision to keep the ceremony private.

Tony from Auckland, New Zealand, told MailOnline: ‘It would have been nice to see the new baby but really I suppose it’s up to them [Duke and Duchess of Sussex]. 

‘I don’t mind paying for the royal family, they’re worth every penny. Just look at the amount of tourists they bring to Windsor.’

He added: ‘I think Prince William has a real understanding of the common man and is much closer to ordinary people than his grandfather Prince Philip.’ 

The ‘small, private’ baptism will take place in the private chapel at Windsor castle, before official portraits will be taken in the same drawing room where Charles and Diana celebrated Harry’s christening. 

A handful of royal fans have gathered in the streets of Windsor in the hope that they will catch a glimpse of the royals.  

One particularly excited devotee has even baked a cake for the christening and written Archie’s name onto it. 

Meanwhile royal commentator Duncan Larcombe, and author of Prince Harry – The Inside Story, has slammed the young couple’s ‘petulant’ decision to lock the press out of the event.

‘It’s disappointing for me because I really like Harry and I’ve known him for a long time’, he told Sky News.

‘But it seems like there is a pettiness and a truculence since he got married, since perhaps news of their relationship became public.

‘I think you can trace it back to then – the sort of petulance that, over a longer period of time, could do him a lot of harm.’ 

The date for Archie’s christening had to be pushed back by two days, after his parents discovered that both the Queen and Prince Charles had prior engagements on the first date.

While the Queen has bowed out graciously in order to spend a long planned weekend with Prince Philip in Sandringham, after a family conference it was decided that the date should be moved to accommodate Prince Charles.

He was away in Wales on the previously planned date to celebrate 50 years of him being Prince of the country. 

Although her majesty has not been able to attend all of her great-grandchildren’s christenings, having missed Prince Louis’s baptism last year, it is understood that she would have like to be present for Prince Harry’s big celebration with his first child.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex reportedly shunned celebrities as godparents, instead turning to a close group of friends who played a key role at their wedding. 

It has emerged in recent days that the couple are using a royal loophole to ensure baby Archie’s godparents remain a secret. 

Under Church of England rules, the details of all baptisms, including the baby’s godparents, are a matter of public record and can be obtained easily for a small fee.

Royal sources have said that Meghan and Harry picked ‘close and old friends’ for the roles amid a backlash over the royal couple’s refusal to identify them because they are ‘private citizens’.

It comes as the Queen’s former spokesperson Dickie Arbiter told MailOnline that details about godparents are ‘private’ but previous royal parents including the Cambridges have chosen to share the information.

Mr Arbiter also explained how although Archie’s godparents’ identities might not be officially released on Saturday, they will be put in the royal records which is held at Windsor Castle and will be available to historians in the future. 

The chosen few are likely to include Meghan’s friend Benita Litt and Harry’s childhood mentor Mark Dyer, while more-notable names including Jessica Mulroney and Serena Williams are out.

Ms Litt is an old friend from Los Angeles whose daughters Remi and Rylan – both Meghan’s goddaughters – were bridesmaids at the couple’s wedding.

Royal babies must be christened owing to the Queen’s role as Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England.

They are often welcomed into the faith within weeks of being born – in Archie’s case, the ceremony comes exactly two months after his arrival on May 6.

Prince George was a little older, aged three months, when he was christened while Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis were both aged around two months.

Prince William was baptised on August 4 1982 at the age of six weeks, while Harry was three months old.

The Prince of Wales was one month and one day old at his own christening. The Queen was just five weeks old when she was christened.

 

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