It is remembered as one of the most sordid events in the history of the British Monarchy, the day Edward VIII renounced his duty to marry his divorced lover Wallis Simpson.
When Edward abdicated in 1936, he renounced his and his descendants’ rights to inherit the throne, however new information that has come to light recently show that Edward VIII (who became the Duke of Windsor after he abdicated) planned to return to the UK to be regent if Queen Elizabeth II was under the age of majority when she acceded.
In the 1940s, George VI (The Queen’s father’s) health began to deteriorate and advisors were worried he may not live much longer.
The old guard at Buckingham Palace were concerned about Elizabeth’s new husband, Prince Philip, who they knew was interested in taking control and some even thought had ambitions to become King Consort. Prince Philip’s uncle, Lord Mountbatten, had the Greek Prince’s ear and acted as his coach almost. The court was worried that Elizabeth was too young to have the responsibilities of Queenship and that she’d be vulnerable to Prince Philip and Lord Mountbatten’s ‘radical control’.
Fortunately for the Royal Household, the situation of The Queen’s competency never was an issue when she finally succeeded in 1952, though had she acceded a few years earlier, Edward might have become Regent and the Monarchy as we know it today might have been very different.
Edward lived the remainder of his life in France with his wife Wallis. Neither of them had any involvement with the Royal Family after Edward left the country.