Prince William is the most popular British royal: poll

London: Queen Elizabeth II might be the second-longest reigning monarch of Britain but it is Prince William who is the most popular royal in recent history.

According to a poll carried out by King`s College London/Ipsos MORI, 30-year-old Prince William was voted as the most popular royal, ahead of the Queen, who celebrated her Diamond Jubilee this year, wife Kate and even his late mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Prince Harry, 28, is rated as the third most popular royal, demonstrating just how important the younger royals have already become when it comes to the future of the monarchy, the Daily Mail reported.

It also suggests a desire, particularly among younger people, for the House of Windsor to skip a generation, with the Queen being followed by her grandson rather than her son and heir, Prince Charles.

Asked which members of the Royal family they liked best, the 64-year-old future king was rated by just 21 per cent of respondents, a drop of more than half since 1984, making him fifth in the `rankings`.

The poll was carried out ahead of a debate on the changing nature of the monarchy later this week.

William was rated the most popular royal by 62 per cent of respondents, the Queen by 48 and Prince Harry by 36. William`s wife, Kate, was rated fourth with 23 per cent.

The Duchess of Cornwall scored just two per cent, second from bottom after Prince Edward who was rated by just one per cent of those quizzed. Princess Diana`s highest score over the past 30 years was 47 per cent.

Professor of public opinion and political analysis at King`s College, Roger Mortimore, said: "A lot of people would like the idea of William succeeding straight away. He is young and good looking and popular."

"I think young people can see something of themselves in William and Kate. They can see the monarchy looking more modern than it did beforehand," he added.

The Queen does, however, end her jubilee year with nine out of ten Britons saying they are satisfied with the way she is doing her job and 79 per cent in favour of retaining the monarchy.

Among the British monarchs, queen Victoria`s reign has been the longest. She ruled for over 63 years.