FIVE-years-ago this week it was announced a royal heir was on the way, when the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge confirmed they were expecting their first baby.

The announcement was made after Kate was admitted to a private London Hospital to be treated for acute morning sickness, also known as hyperemesis gravidarum.

The Prince of Wales said that he was "thrilled" that the Duchess was pregnant, adding: "It's a very nice thought to become a grandfather in my old age."

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The news was placed on the social media site, Twitter, making it the first royal baby to be announced in such a way.

Prince George arrived weighing a bouncing 8lbs 6oz the following July.

Then-Chancellor George Osborne gave his Autumn Statement that week, announcing the Government was now prepared to fund the long awaited upgrade of the A1 between Leeming and Barton – despite cancelling the project just two years earlier to save money.

It was estimated that making the A1 a three-lane motorway for the entire stretch from London to Newcastle would save about 100 lives and prevent 650 serious casualties over 60 years.

North Yorkshire County Council leader, John Weighell, said the upgrade was key to the economic prosperity of the county.

He said: "The closure of the road during the floods of this year has underlined the importance of major improvements.

"It is extremely gratifying that the Government has now responded with this announcement."

Work on the £380.3m project started in March 2014 and is due to be completed any time now. The first completed six-mile section opened in September.

Also that week, a five-year-old schoolboy who had life-changing surgery was "over the moon" after switching on Christmas lights in Durham.

Thomas Brennan, whose spastic diplegic cerebral palsy left him in constant pain and often unable to walk more than a few steps, faced the surgeon's knife in St Louis, Missouri, that summer in a bid to fix what he called his "crazy legs".

Thomas’s fast recovery amazed doctors and he was picked for the Christmas switch-on inside Durham’s County Hall and the roundabout outside.

Thomas's mother, Jodie Bussey said: "He was over the moon. He kept asking when he could switch the lights on. And once he had done so, he asked if they could be turned off so he could do it again."

She added: "It was a nice little treat for him after everything he has been through. Thomas has been so brave. It was an honour for him to have been asked."

Meanwhile, James Arthur celebrated at the end of the week after claiming the title of X Factor winner.

The 24-year-old former pub singer from Saltburn, was stunned as host Dermot O'Leary announced the result.

When asked what was going through his mind, he said: "I don't know. Thank you, thank you so much."

"The X Factor has without a doubt changed my life."