Media colleagues have taken to social media to pledge their support for the BBC's Royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell after he appeared to lose his train of thought during a live broadcast.

The BBC presenter, who has covered the Royal family since 1998, was doing a live piece to the camera following the birth of the baby Sussex. 

He had to hand back to the studio early, apologising for his error. 

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Giving his live broadcast, he said: "Now what of their son, baby Sussex, no name for him so far. The first Anglo-American birth in the British royal family, uh, now we know, of course, that uh ...

"Excuse me, just let me just collect my thoughts. The first Anglo-American birth in the British royal family, and it is ... it is certain, of course ... "I'm so sorry, let me just once again, uh, hand back to you, Ben."

Following the broadcast, news anchor Ben Brown continued the bulletin after the royal baby item was abruptly ended.

Many people leapt to Mr Witchell’s defence after the bulletin. His BBC colleague Jeremy Bowen said: “I’ve seen some snide comments about Nick Witchell. Please stop, they’re not deserved.

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“He’s a respected and experienced broadcaster, doing his job. I don’t know what happened tonight but it’s certainly no reason to be nasty.”

Sky News anchor Adam Boulton wrote on Twitter: “What just happened to Nicholas Witchell? Great reporter. Something must have been distracting him.”

Viewer Paul McGlynn said: “Just seen Nicholas Witchell on a live BBC news broadcast, he had to pass back to the studio, one of the most experienced presenters so it wasn’t nerves etc, before he gets panned online can everyone at least wait until he is confirmed ok, he deserves that.”