Jan’s work is a gift to Kate and William to mark the arrival of baby George

Jan Pickett with a copy of the scroll to announce the birth of the Royal baby. ''''Picture: Allan Hutchings (132137-222)
Jan Pickett with a copy of the scroll to announce the birth of the Royal baby. ''''Picture: Allan Hutchings (132137-222)
Portsmouth Guildhall Picture: Garth Groombridge

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IT WAS a unique gift presented to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to welcome the future king into the world.

And this beautiful scroll was created by Portsmouth calligrapher Jan Pickett.

She was commissioned to produce the scroll by staff at the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, to celebrate the birth of Prince George of Cambridge at St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington on Monday, July 22.

Jan, 66 from Warblington Street in Old Portsmouth, received a phone call asking her to produce the scroll.

She said: ‘I get phone calls all the time from my website. It started like any other commission. The writing was sent to me. I made some suggestions and we went from there.’

Jan produced the scroll earlier in July, and left a space to fill in the date the baby was born and the sex of the child.

It took her more than 12 hours to produce the scroll, part of which is gilded with 23.5 carat gold.

And on the day that the Duchess of Cambridge went into labour, Jan stayed at home waiting for news.

She said: ‘It wasn’t too pressurised until the final moments - then it was really stressful. My pen was at the ready. I didn’t go far from home that day.

‘I was in the middle of a Chinese meal when the hospital rang me to confirm I had got all the details.’

The scroll was taken up to London by courier and arrived at the hospital by midnight.

‘It didn’t seem too stressful at first,’ Jan added. ‘It just did have the added stress at the very end when I realised I had to fill in those last few words and very quickly get it up to London.

‘The thought of making a mistake at this stage was unbearable.

‘I feel extremely thrilled and very pleased to have been able to have that opportunity. It’s very special.

‘It’s only really dawned since I saw them come out of hospital and I knew that they must have the scroll. It’s really hit home since then.’

Jan has been involved in calligraphy for 30 years.

She said: ‘I love the freedom it gives me and I equally love the discipline it demands.

‘However stressed I feel about something I can go upstairs and pick up a pen and lose myself in it.’

Jan has her own copy of the scroll that she produced as a souvenir.