Speaking to Vanity Fair, royal author Anna Pasternak, who wrote The Real Wallis Simpson: A New History of the American Divorcee Who Became the Duchess of Windsor, says that she believes the trajectory of the British monarchy might be more uncertain in light of recent events.
“I’m not 100 percent sure that we will see Charles ascend to the throne,” said Pasternak. “The Sussexes have sparked something so fundamentally incendiary in this country that it is changing the face of Britain, and I think the monarchy as an archaic institution may well topple.”
In December 2020, a YouGov poll found two thirds of Britons (67 per cent) want Britain to keep its monarchy, while only 21 per cent would prefer an elected head. This was prior to the Oprah Winfrey interview with the Sussexes in March.
Prince Charles, 72, has been heir apparent for decades and would be in a position to ascend to the throne if his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, died or abdicated. He has also been described as already taking on the role of a “quasi-King” as the Queen gets older - she was 95 on Wednesday.
But Pasternak believes he could not take up the opportunity. “It may be that there is such a groundswell of public opinion against [Charles] that it’s deemed by the firm preferable for William to ascend then because he’s younger, more relatable,” she explained.
Elsewhere in the interview, Pasternak made other speculations about the future of the royal family, including whether or not Meghan would return to the UK. “I truly wonder if Meghan will ever set foot on British soil again,” she said.
The comments come after the Duke of Sussex and the Duke of Cambridge were seen speaking at the funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh last week - a possible sign of reconciliation after their reported rift.
It was the first time that the brothers had seen each other in over a year and came after Harry and Meghan’s bombshell Oprah interview last month.