Who will be a better monarch: the Queen, Prince Charles or Prince William?

Isabelle KirkData Journalist
May 31, 2022, 8:37 AM GMT+0

The public think the heirs to the throne will do a good job as kings, but they have big shoes to fill

Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her Platinum Jubilee this year. Now 96, the Queen is likely reaching the end of her reign, and so the spotlight will increasingly fall on the heirs to the throne. Queen Elizabeth remains extremely popular among the British public, but will future kings Charles and William live up to the standards she set?

Both princes will have a tough job garnering the same level of approval as the Queen: more than eight in 10 (84%) Britons think the Queen has done a good job in her 70 years on the throne, including six in 10 (60%) who say she has done a ‘very good job’.

Even a large majority of those Britons who think the UK should move to having an elected head of state still think the Queen has done a good job (66%).

Britons are more likely to think Prince William will make a good king than Prince Charles

YouGov tracking data shows that the public are split 34% to 37% on whether Prince Charles should succeed as king after Queen Elizabeth, or whether the crown should pass down in favour of the more popular Prince William.

The British public tend to think both princes will make good kings should they ascend to the throne, but there is significantly more confidence in William than Charles: 77% of the public think Prince William will do a good job as king, compared to 57% for Prince Charles.

Young people in particular are much more supportive of William than Charles – 51% of 18 to 24-year-olds say William will make a good king, compared to just 29% who think Charles will. Britons aged 65 and older have more faith in both princes, but, again, there is a higher level of confidence in William (87%) than Charles (70%).

Since the Diamond Jubilee celebrations in 2012, the public’s belief in the princes’ ability to be good kings has fallen slightly, with both experiencing four point declines from 83% for William and 61% for Charles.

Britons who favour moving to an elected head of state instead are much less confident in Prince Charles’ ability to be a good king – just a third (32%) think he will do a good job on the throne and 54% think he will do a bad job. The majority (54%), however, still think William will be a good king, with 28% saying the opposite.

Those Britons who think the country should continue to have a monarchy in the future likewise have higher expectations for William (93% expect he would do a good job) than Charles (72%).

See full results here