Buckingham Palace made the shocking revelation that the King had been diagnosed with an unconfirmed type of cancer in February 2024 and would be taking a step back from his royal duties whilst he sought out treatment.
In November 2023, growing whispers in royal circles hinted that the monarch was contemplating abdicating after five years on the throne.
"I think Charles feels [like] it's his duty to serve, having waited so long, but he also knows he is the oldest person ever to have been coronated," royal author Clive Irving shared with the Daily Express at the time.
"The deal has been done that when Charles is 80, he will quit and hand over...He knows that Prince William is a much more appropriate face for the monarchy than he is."
What will happen if King Charles abdicates from the throne?
If King Charles chooses to step down, his son, Prince William is next in the line of succession and will become the next King of England.
Prince George would then become next in line to the throne, with his remaining family members who follow behind him moving forward a place.
Instead of abdicating, King Charles may instead elect to name Prince William as regent, who will rule in his stead as monarch until his father's health improves.
When did the last abdication take place in Britain?
In December 1936, the Duke of Windsor, Edward VII abdicated from the throne in order to marry American socialite Wallis Simpson.
As she was a divorcee, it was politically, socially, and religiously unacceptable for the King of England to marry someone of her standing.
Following this, his younger brother, Prince Albert (later crowned King George VI) ascended to the throne, thus paving the way for his eldest daughter Elizabeth to become Queen.