The odds aren’t great that the new prince will be called Alfred – but Alfred was a great King

The Grumbles have just framed the nice letter they received from a flunky in the household of Prince William and Kate Middleton. Our advice on a name for the royal baby – we were pleased to know – had been greatly appreciated by the royal couple.

The framed letter will sit proudly on the mantlepiece.

The name we suggested, of course, was Alfred.

We drew the prince’s attention to these critical details about his royal predecessor, who was one of England’s early monarchs and the only one to be called “the Great”.

Name: King Alfred the Great
Born: c.849 at Wantage, Berkshire
Parents: Aethelwulf and Osburh
Relation to Elizabeth II: 32nd great-grandfather
House of: Wessex
Became King: 871
Married: Ealhswith of Mercia
Children: 5 children, Aelfthryth, Aethelflaed, Aethelgifu, Edward, Aethelweard
Died: October 26, 899
Buried at: Winchester
Succeeded by: his son Edward

The Grumbles know, of course, that royal baby names are not always revealed straight away. Hence the public can be left guessing for several days.

Alf recalls it took a week to announce William’s name and a month before the public found out the Prince of Wales would be christened Charles.

The unseemly side of having to wait – of course – is that outfits like Ladbrokes, the bookmakers, are apt to give the public a chance to take a punt on maybe making a few bucks from the name that ultimately is announced.

Ladbrokes in fact had opened a book before we knew the royal sprog is a boy, which means everybody who put their money on a sheila’s name have already blown their money.

The Daily Mirror has told us about it here.

Bookmakers Ladbrokes say they have so far taken money on 96 names, with Alexandra the favourite. While George leads the betting for boys at other bookies’, their top pick for a son is James.

But as the Daily Mirror pointed out, some punters don’t appear to prize their cash too much, with bets placed on the likes of Chardonnay, Elvis, Tulisa and Psy.

The Mirror reckons the newest member of the royal family is far more likely to have a name of a previous monarch , such as George, or Henry.

Albert is in with a chance, because the Mirror article lists it at odds of 50/1, but Alfred is not listed.

The same 50/1 odds are given to Henry, although Alf reminded the royal couple in his letter to them that the last of the kings to be named Henry was reputed to be a stroppy bugger. He had a strong urge to trade in the wife and get himself a new model every now and again.

Sometimes he would take a short cut to achieve this and have the discarded missus beheaded. Trouble is, in an era when the merest hint of wife-beating can have the cops knocking on the door, beheading the missus is regarded as very anti-social behaviour.

Oh – let’s note that Rodney is on the bookies’ list at odds of 100/1, which should chuff Rodney Hide.

But the punters get plain silly with Elvis 500/1, Rylan 500/1, Basil 500/1, Psy 5000/1 and North 5000/1.


What tosser has put money on that?

Mind you, if the punter had gone for something a bit more elaborate, like Eketahuna North…well, that would be a different matter.

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