PUBLISHED: 11:02, Wed, Oct 28, 2020 | UPDATED: 11:02, Wed, Oct 28, 2020
Charles’ time on the throne is nervously anticipated by some royal watchers, due to his controversial past and occasional ‘political meddling’, which has divided public opinion. He is a much more contentious figure than his mother, the Queen, and so his reign could usher in a new era of republican sentiment. He has not been shy about how he intends to reshape the Royal Family and ‘slim it down’ to its core members — which would be a drastic change from the ever-expanding monarchy Britons have become used to under the Queen.
Charles is also now the oldest-ever heir apparent at 71, having been first-in-line to the throne since he was just three years old, although he was not invested as the Prince of Wales until he was 20.
A parallel can therefore be drawn between Charles’ future reign and the current monarchy in Thailand.
King Maha Vajiralongkorn, also known as King Rama X, was crowned in 2019, almost three years after the death of his father King Bhumibol Adulyadej.
He was first declared as the crown prince when he was just 20 years old — like Charles — and assumed the throne when he was 64 upon his father's death.
Prince Charles is the oldest heir in British history (Image: Getty)
King Maha Vajiralongkorn, also known as King Rama X, was crowned in 2019 (Image: Getty)
He was the oldest Thai heir to ever ascend the throne, just as the Prince of Wales will be.
However, the monarchy has been under scrutiny ever since King Rama X’s coronation last year.
Pro-democracy protesters in Thailand have been campaigning for an investigation of the Thai king’s activities in Germany — where he has spent most of the last year — and for monarchy reform.
The protests, initiated by students, started with demands to remove Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, but have since evolved into a challenge to the royal institution.
A key protest leader, Jatupat Boonpattaraksa, told Japan Times: “Even if Prayuth quits, someone like Prayut will replace him and we’ll go back to the same problems again.
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Thai protesters in Bangkok, calling for reforms to the monarchy (Image: Getty)