Queen Elizabeth was never supposed to be just that. She moved up in the line of succession when her uncle, the Duke of Windsor, abdicated in 1936 to marry an American divorcee, so Elizabeth's father, Albert, took the throne.
When Albert, who ruled as King George VI, died suddenly in 1952, 25-year-old Elizabeth proved herself more then ready to wear the crown.
And although she won praise as a monarch, she was sometimes criticised for her aloof parenting style.
Jane Stevens, lady-in-waiting to Princess Margaret on Elizabeth's mothering: "Sometimes the press tried to make out that Elizabeth wasn't a good mother. If you talk to them about it, it's not true. But she was working much harder than most other women."
Robert Lacey, royal biographer, reveals why Prince Charles suffered the most from the Queen's parenting: "Charles, it was his misfortune to need his mother's affections at the time where her job was also demanding that she give herself to her people. Everybody in those early years remarked on how stilted and formal the Queen was. Charles suffered from that, probably more than anybody else. Because of the growing power of the media, Charles and his mother were subjected to private reunions in public scenarios."