prince charles birthday portrait

Prince Charles vows he won't be a meddling monarch

The royal will celebrate his 70th birthday on Wednesday

Sharnaz Shahid

Prince Charles has revealed he will not "meddle" in public affairs when he becomes King. Speaking in a BBC documentary to mark his 70th birthday, the royal acknowledged he would not be "able to do the same things I've done as heir" as he recognises being heir to the throne and head of state are two different roles. "I think it's vital to remember there's only room for one sovereign at a time, not two," he explained in the hour-long programme. "So, you can't be the same as the sovereign if you're the Prince of Wales or the heir."

Prince Charles said he won't be a meddling King

He added: "But the idea somehow that I'm going to go on in exactly the same way, if I have to succeed, is complete nonsense because the two - the two situations - are completely different." In the past, Charles has been criticised for his views on topics such as the environment or architecture, which was subsequently dubbed as meddling by critics. Asked whether his public campaigning will go on, the royal replied: "No, it won't. I'm not that stupid. I do realise that it is a separate exercise being sovereign. So of course I understand entirely how that should operate."

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When questioned about what some have termed his "meddling", Charles defended his actions, saying: "But I always wonder what meddling is, I mean I always thought it was motivating but I've always been intrigued, if it's meddling to worry about the inner cities as I did 40 years ago and what was happening or not happening there." He added: "The conditions in which people were living. If that's meddling I'm very proud of it." The documentary will give royal fans a candid insight into the future king in private and public.

Prince, Son And Heir: Charles At 70 will be screened on Thursday at 9pm on BBC One.

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