The prince was born on 14 November 1948. He grew up with his family at Clarence House, spending school holidays on the Sandringham and Balmoral estates. He became heir apparent when he was three years old.
Prince Charles was the first Prince of Wales ever to be educated publicly, and his senior years were spent at Gordonstoun in the Highlands. Years later, he reportedly called it "Colditz in kilts", but said it taught him self-discipline and responsibility.
Words by Victoria Bone