Developing

Queen Jokes: 'Please Have Baby Soon, Kate'

The Queen has said she does not mind if the Duchess of Cambridge has a boy or a girl - but hopes the baby arrives before she goes on holiday.

Her Majesty made the quip in reply to a question from a 10-year-old schoolgirl while on a series of engagements in the Lake District.

Fay Batey, a pupil at Wiggonby CofE Primary School, asked: "Do you want Kate's baby to be a boy or girl?"

The Queen replied: "I don't think I mind."

Then laughing, she added: "I'd very much like it to arrive ... I'm going on holiday (soon)."

Fay and fellow pupils waved Union flags and cheered as the royal party arrived at the Brockhole Lake District Visitor Centre.

The youngster later told reporters it was "really, really exciting" to speak to the Queen.

Her Majesty's response echoed the anticipation felt by many over the pending royal birth.

The world's media has gathered outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in central London.

Kensington Palace has refused to comment on speculation the child was due on July 13.

It would only confirm what everyone already knew - he or she should arrive this month.

Whatever the sex, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child will be next in line to the throne after Prince Charles and William.