Alexander Larman

This isn’t the beginning of the Charles Regency

(Getty images)

One of the cruellest and most accurate remarks made about Prince Charles is that he is less king-in-waiting and more the perennial prince, forever hanging about in his mother’s shadow and increasingly desperate to assume the throne.

Yet he is now 73 years old, and will be the oldest monarch to ascend the throne since William IV, who became king aged 64 in 1830.

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