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What it was like to cover Princess Charlotte's birth first-hand

Our royal editor remembers the day well...

Emily Nash

It's hard to believe that five years have passed since the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge welcomed Princess Charlotte into the world. William and Kate's little girl is now a lively schoolgirl, but it feels like only yesterday I was outside the Lindo Wing of St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, along with the rest of the world's media, awaiting her arrival.

After the seemingly endless "great Kate wait" that led up to Prince George's birth in 2013, we had steeled ourselves for another long stint in the street outside. Media pens were closed until the Duchess was admitted to hospital in labour, but as the days went on, nervous royal correspondents nevertheless began to gather outside.

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WATCH: Relive Princess Charlotte's birth in 2015

And with no sign of the next royal baby more than a fortnight after parking restrictions had been put in place there, those of us due to head to New Zealand on tour with Prince Harry later that week began wondering if we might have to change travel plans. In another sign of just how much has changed since 2015, many of us whiled away the time with the latest social media trend – Periscope. At one point I remember joining CNN's Max Foster for a live chat into his cameraphone, which he had precariously mounted on a dustbin outside the hospital's café.

MORE: Millie Mackintosh and Hugo Taylor welcome first child

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Emily Nash with CNN's Max Foster

Finally, on Saturday May 2, an early morning email from Kensington Palace sent me racing to the hospital. Kate had been admitted in labour at around 6am and, – we were about to discover – was cradling her newborn daughter in her arms just two-and-a-half hours later. I was grabbing a coffee when the announcement pinged into my inbox and I remember shouting "It's a girl!" before dashing outside with everyone else. Champagne corks were popping and there were cheers among the royal superfans who had been camped out for days.

MORE: How Princess Charlotte is taking after her mum with her charm, confidence and girl power

Their patience was rewarded at 4pm when William left the hospital and returned 20 minutes later with Prince George, sparking a ripple of cheers and frenzied cooing. Just 21 months old and cute as a button in a Rachel Riley outfit, the little prince shyly put his arms up to be carried and his father gently encouraged him to give us a wave, rewarding him with a kiss on the head as he carried him inside to meet his new baby sister for the first time. And shortly after 6pm we got our own first glimpse of the new royal baby, as excitement reached fever pitch.

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Charlotte was born on 2 May 2015

Despite screams and cheers from the hundreds of people now thronging the street, Princess Charlotte, not quite ten hours hold, slept peacefully in her mother Kate's arms as she and William emerged from the famous doors. William had a protective arm around Kate, who looked immaculate in a yellow and cream floral dress by Jenny Packham, prompting someone next to me in the media pen to exclaim: "I cannot believe she has had a baby today!"

But it was cold and the Duchess understandably did not want to stand around for too long, so after a brief wave to the crowds, they stepped back inside to put Charlotte in her car seat before William drove them home to Kensington Palace. Little did we know, three years later we would be back in the same spot watching both George and Charlotte arrive to meet their baby brother Prince Louis.

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