Tuesday, October 4, 2022

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Queen Elizabeth II’s successor: who is next in line for the British throne?

Queen Elizabeth II died on September 8, 2022, at the age of 96, 70 years after she took the throne.

Elizabeth’s death came shortly after news broke that doctors were concerned for her health and her family rushed to her bed at Balmoral Castle in Scotland. The Royal Family’s official Twitter account shared: “The Queen passed away peacefully in Balmoral this afternoon. The King and The Queen Consort remain in Balmoral tonight and return to London tomorrow.

The Queen was a unifying figure in the United Kingdom. She ascended to the throne after the death of her father, King George VI, on February 6, 1952, and her coronation took place in 1953, according to her official biography. Her Majesty celebrated her platinum anniversary earlier in 2022 – 70 years since her accession.

After the news of Queen Elizabeth II’s death, many have wondered who will replace her and what the line of succession is.

Here’s what you need to know:

The heir apparent is Charles, formerly the Prince of Wales, eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, former Duke of Edinburgh. Charles was born on November 14, 1948 in Buckingham Palace and was only 3 years old when the Queen ascended to the throne and he became the heir apparent, according to his palace biography.

The former Prince of Wales married Lady Diana Spencer on 29 July 1981 and she became HRH The Princess of Wales. The couple had two sons: William, born June 21, 1982; and Harry, born September 15, 1984. Their marriage did not last, however, and the couple announced their divorce in 1992. The marriage was dissolved on August 28, 1996, according to Prince Charles’ Palace biography.

Charles remarried on April 9, 2005 and married Camilla Parker Bowles in a civil ceremony. She then became known as HRH The Duchess of Cornwall. In her Accession Day message for her platinum anniversary in February 2022, the Queen announced that when Prince Charles becomes King, “it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort.”

At the 2018 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, Charles was unanimously elected the Queen’s successor to the next head of the Commonwealth. The head of the Commonwealth is not a hereditary position, unlike the throne, according to Charles’s official website.

After the news of Elizabeth’s death, the royal family’s Twitter account officially referred to as Charles and Camilla as “The King and The Queen Consort.”

The Prince William (formerly the Duke of Cambridge and now the Duke of Cornwall and Cambridge, according to the website Unofficial Royalty), is second in line to the throne after his father, King Charles. He is the eldest son of Charles and Diana.

On April 29, 2011, William married Catherine Middleton, whom he met at St Andrews University. She became known as the Duchess of Cambridge and they have three children: George, Charlotte and Louis.

The Succession to the Crown Act, passed in the UK in 2013, amended probate laws to ensure that male children born after October 28, 2011 would not go for older sisters in the line of succession.

According to the royal website, the current line of succession is as follows: King Charles; William, the Duke of Cornwall and Cambridge; Prince George of Cornwall and Cambridge; Princess Charlotte of Cambridge; Prince Louis of Cambridge; and sixth in line is Harry, the Duke of Sussex.

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