At 91-years-old and no signs of slowing down, many wonder how much longer The Queen can or will go on.
Very few people believe Her Majesty will ever abdicate the throne which she has held since the age of 25.
When still a Princess, Elizabeth said in a 1947 speech: “I declare before you all that my whole life whether it be long or short shall be devoted to your service.” But what comes should Her Majesty become too fragile to carry on?
The Duke of Edinburgh, husband of Her Majesty, has just retired from public life at 96-years-old. The Queen is certainly not stopping anytime soon but has started to hand off more of her duties to the younger royals.
I don’t see many faulting The Queen for wanting to spend the remaining years of her life in quiet seclusion. The most logical solution should be for her to make Prince Charles the Prince Regent. Therefore, she could cut down her duties without ever abdicating.
As Prince Regent, Charles would rule in his mother’s place without formally becoming King. George IV is the most well-known Prince Regent who ruled in his father, George III stead as he suffered a mental illness between 1811-1820. Not many have held the regent title in history, mostly in the cases of minors becoming Monarch before maturity.
Should Her Majesty feel up to attending public events, she would still be in power to do so, but Prince Charles would hold all formality.
The Queen has dedicated her entire life to her country, abdicating is and never will be an option as it is seen as giving up, yet handing The Prince of Wales the title of Prince Regent would be a diplomatic and kind gesture.
The Regency Act 1937 made way for a regent to step in should a monarch become incapacitated. Three of more people such as the monarch’s spouse, the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Lord Chancellor, the Lord Chief Justice and the Master of the Rolls must put in writing that the Regent will perform the duties of the monarch until a time which they are fit.
The act does also say that this is only to last until the monarch is able to resume their duties, so should The Queen make Charles Prince Regent an addendum would have to be made for this new circumstance.