Punters at odds on whether Kate will have a boy or girl

Punters appear to be split on whether the Duchess of Cambridge will have a girl called Alice or a boy named Arthur, according to high street bookmakers.

Expectations are high that news of Kate's birth will be announced in the next few hours, giving royal fans only a short window to place a bet on their favourite moniker.

Alice is the favourite name with William Hill with odds of 4-1, while Coral makes Arthur its 5-1 top placed choice.

William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said: "We will probably take more money on the baby name than any other market today.

"I am told that labour could be speedy, so you will have to be quick."

It is understood Kate was taken to the private maternity unit of St Mary's hospital in the early stages of labour before 6am.

When the duchess was pregnant with Princess Charlotte her labour began in similar circumstances, with Kate being admitted around the same time and her daughter born a few hours later.

Coral's Harry Aitkenhead said: "The excitement is reaching fever pitch now with Kate going into labour and we're seeing punters in their droves queuing up to bet on the name of the new Royal baby.

"Arthur is the hot favourite at odds of 5-1, ahead of Mary and Alice.

"However events like this always see people betting with small stakes on outsiders and this morning we've seen support for Louis, Jacob and Luke."

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