There has been speculation for a long while over whether or not Queen Elizabeth would ever choose to retire and effectively abdicate her throne, especially in the wake of Prince Andrew’s recent scandal. However, while the palace has effectively denied that Her Majesty intends to step down and let Prince Charles begin to take over, one royal expert insists that the plans are in place for that to virtually take place.

In an interview with Vanity Fair, royal biographer Robert Jobson revealed that when the Queen turns 95, which will take place in 18 months' time, the plan is in motion for her to effectively step down and put the Regency Act into play, which will allow her to retain her title and not abdicate, but will give Prince Charles the chance to actually rule.

“It is the Queen’s intention to hand over to Charles when she turns 95,” he said. “We are in a period of transition at the moment and it is my understanding the Queen wants to hand the regency over to Charles and in doing so, give him all the executive powers of the monarch.”

“She will retain the title of Queen, she’s not abdicating, but there is enough scope within the Regency Act for her to step down should she wish to,” he added. “We are talking regency not an abdication. The most important thing is to maintain the strength and integrity of the institution. If she feels her advancing age is in any way weakening the institution, then she would bring about change.”

Similarly, fellow royal biographer Sarah Gristwood revealed that the Queen might consider taking a step back in the interest of her subjects, even though she famously said during her coronation that she would always faithfully serve.

“By the sound of it, we’re not talking actual abdication. I think a lot depends on exactly how you interpret that famous speech: ‘I declare that my whole life, where it be long or short, will be dedicated to your service,’” she recalled. “There’s always been taken as meaning the Queen would stay in harness until she dies. But isn’t it possible a time may come when she might be persuaded she could best ‘serve’ her people by taking a back seat?’”

The comments by Jobson come as Prince Charles has notably been taking on a more public role within the royal family and completing tasks that were once reserved for the Queen, but also on the heels of Prince Andrew’s bizarre interview where he defended his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein last month. Following the backlash from that, his offices were removed from Buckingham Palace and he has officially stepped away from royal duties, and sources previously claimed that the scandal gave Prince Charles a chance to really start stepping up as the Prince Regent.

However, sources from Clarence House told Vanity Fair that despite the rumors everything was being set in motion for a transfer of power, no such plans are in place, and the Queen is not transitioning her responsibilities once she turns 95.

Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles pose with officers during an official visit to the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment at Hyde Park Barracks on October 24, 2017 in London. Getty Images/Chris Jackson