Factbox: Line of succession to the British throne

Mon Jul 22, 2013 3:41pm EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - The baby born to Britain's Prince William and his wife Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, will be third in line to the British throne, regardless of gender, following a change in the rules of royal succession.

The heir apparent is the queen's son, Prince Charles, and the second in line is his eldest son, Prince William. The new member of the royal family will push Prince Harry, William's younger brother, into fourth place, with Prince Andrew, Charles's younger brother, ranked fifth.

Here is a look at the five people in line to follow Queen Elizabeth, who has been Britain's monarch for 61 years:

1. PRINCE CHARLES, the Prince of Wales: The eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Born on November 14, 1948, he became heir to the throne on the accession of his mother in 1952 and is the longest serving heir apparent in British history.

Charles, educated at the private Gordonstoun school and Trinity College, Cambridge, served with the Royal Navy from 1971 to 1976.

He married Lady Diana Spencer in 1981 and the couple had two sons - William in 1982 and Harry in 1984. They divorced in 1996 after highly publicized marital problems and affairs. Diana was killed in a car crash in Paris in 1997.

In 2005, Charles, now 64, married divorcee Camilla Parker Bowles, now 66. She took the title Duchess of Cornwall and has gradually won public favor, helping to repair Prince Charles's popularity, which suffered after Diana's death.

Since the 1980s, Prince Charles has been a champion of the environment, converting his country estate Highgrove to organic farming and in 2010 writing a book, "Harmony: A Vision for Our Future", about changing the course of environmental destruction.

2. PRINCE WILLIAM, the Duke of Cambridge: The eldest son of Prince Charles and the late Diana, Princess of Wales. Born on June 21, 1982, at St. Mary's Hospital, London, he was educated at Eton College and the University of St Andrews in Scotland, where he met his wife-to-be, Kate Middleton.   Continued...