Prince Charles has been named the longest heir apparent in history, having been the next in line to the throne since the age of 3. The Prince of Wales has been waiting for his birthright for almost 68 years — and with his mother Queen Elizabeth II earning the title of the longest-reigning monarch in British history since 2015 — it looks to be a bit more of a wait before Charles will be king. With the 71st birthday of Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth’s eldest son coming up in November, royal family critics have been raising contention whether he is too old to become king.

The Queen turned 93 years old in April this year — and serving a good 67 years as the reigning monarch — placing Charles at the center of media attention as the heir apparent. The Prince of Wales is already getting ready to succeed his mother, already attending meetings of the Duchy to prepare for his future role. However, the heir apparent’s popularity ratings have dropped over the years, with many calling for him to abdicate the throne in favor of his son, Prince William.

This is of course pure fantasy as according to the 1701 Act of Settlement, Charles is the rightful heir to Queen Elizabeth. According to royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams, the Prince of Wales is not only the rightful heir to the throne but holds a promise to be a great king as well.

“Monarchy embodies the hereditary principle for good or ill and the successor to the Queen therefore must be Charles,” Fitzwilliams said. “With the monarchy so pivotal to national unity in a deeply divided country, Charles will find his considerable experience, gained through so long an apprenticeship, is of very considerable use to the nation.”

Although Prince William is also indeed working his hardest in order to be a good heir to the throne, his father has also spent his entire life preparing to be king. Charles’ years of experience and extensive preparations will provide the difference between the two — which would ultimately be better for William to learn from his father. 

“It is his [Charles’] destiny to serve,” Fitzwilliams stated. “William will be only too happy to wait his turn.”

Prince Charles and Prince William Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, in his role as a Royal Knight Companion of the Garter and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, in his role as a Knight Companion walk in the procession to the Order of the Garter Service. WPA Pool/Getty Images