Prince Charles, Longest Waiting Heir Apparent

April 21, 2011 Updated: October 1, 2015
Prince Charles in Morocco on April 5. (Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Prince Charles in Morocco on April 5. (Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Prince Charles has broken the record for waiting the longest in line for the throne.

The prince, now 62, became the heir apparent at age 3 and was given the title Prince of Wales at age 9.

The previous record holder was King Edward VII, with a wait of 59 years, two months and 13 days, announced Clarence House, the official residence of Prince Charles and his family.

According to The Guardian newspaper, with Queen Elizabeth II celebrating her 85th birthday on the same day and his grandmother living to 101, it looks likely that Prince Charles will be extending the record for quite a while.

Rules of succession in the UK currently dictate the eldest son of a sovereign, unless there are only female heirs, must be next in line to the throne. As an heir apparent, Prince Charles cannot be replaced as the next monarch unless the rules of succession are altered.

According to the BBC, recent surveys demonstrate the public in favor of Prince William, son of Prince Charles, as the next monarch for a younger generation of rulers.

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has also said that the government is considering the removal of the laws that mandate male heirs to be chosen over older females, which were "a little old fashioned,” The Guardian reported, but this decision would need the approval of all the Commonwealth countries

However, Constantine, the former King of Greece as well as the godfather of Prince William, dismisses the idea. Constantine told the BBC that the line of succession “works from father to son or mother to son and that’s how it goes. They have to wait their turn… that’s how it should be because we are not politicians."