KIERAN HOWARD: The royal tot may well get a new nursery playmate...

Princess Charlotte on her first day at Willcocks Nursery School 
Photo by The Duchess of Cambridge
Princess Charlotte on her first day at Willcocks Nursery School Photo by The Duchess of Cambridge
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Princess Charlotte had her first day at the very posh Willcocks Nursery School in Kensington, earlier this month.

It costs in the region of £14,500 a year to send your child there.

At the end of his first month I’d be looking for him to perform some kind of Billy Elliot routine

You’ll need to put down a £125 registration fee as soon as they are born to stand a chance of them actually getting in.

And another £1,500 deposit if they are offered a place.

Now, that may sound a little on the expensive side, but how can you put a price on what is essentially just outdoor sandpits and pretend tea parties?

Obviously we’d considered sending Louie there too, but distance was a bit of a drawback for us.

The daily commute would have taken its toll and our boy is possibly a little young to be catching a train on his own just yet.

He wouldn’t be able to reach the ticket machine for a start, and he hasn’t quite yet mastered the art of whistling for a cab.

What’s that, I hear you ask?

Would we not have had an issue with the £14,500-a-year fees?

Oh no, that would barely have been a consideration.

That’s loose change in the back pocket to us.

I am jesting of course, as if you hadn’t already guessed.

Fourteen pence isn’t spare change to me, let alone £14,500.

So, the news channels described Willcocks as a place which ‘uses lots of play to help children learn.’

I’m no expert, but surely that’s just the definition of nursery school?

That’s the very least I’d expect of a nursery, whether I was parting with that much money a year or not.

I’d be a little worried if ‘lots of play’ isn’t an essential ingredient of Louie’s chosen nursery.

If he goes along and spends all day sitting in an empty room, I may have a few concerns to raise with staff.

Apparently, the Kensington nursery also offers a range of classes which include French, dance, sport and music.

Call me demanding, but if I sent Louie there and was spending that sum of money, I’d half-expect him to be fluent in French and a few other languages by the end of week one.

At the end of his first month I’d be looking for him to perform some kind of Billy Elliot routine.

And by the end of the first term, I’d be asking questions if he wasn’t a mini Elton John on the piano and a future England captain on the football field.

Anyway, we’ve got the little man lined up for nursery when he turns three.

I’ll update you if we decide to apply for Willcocks.

PASS ME THE SKATING PENGUIN

Feel the fear and do it anyway, urges self-help author Susan Jeffers.

I shall try and remember those seven simple words when the day comes for me to face up to a 26 year foreboding.

It’s a day which is fast closing in on me and not one I’m overly enthused about.

That’s the beauty of having Louie though. His desire for fun forces me to tackle my own irrational fears.

I don’t want him to miss out on a new challenge just because of my own bravery deficiency.

The personal dread I’m talking about here doesn’t relate to snakes, planes or even snakes on a plane though.

No, the one I’ve carried with me for more than a quarter of a century is ice-skating.

I was eight the last time I placed skate on frozen water. My sister took me to the rink at Gosport to keep me entertained for an hour.

I’m not too sure she took me anywhere again afterwards though.

In short, I fell backwards, hit my head and forced everyone else off the ice for half an hour while I was checked over by medics.

Since then, it’s not really been high on my bucket list to try again.

When I do eventually take Louie, he may not be the only one taking advantage of one of those penguin skating aids.