Queen Elizabeth II gave her assent earlier today to the Succession to Crown Act.
Just a few small changes:
Roman Catholics remain excluded from the succession, but the loss of rights due to marrying a Roman Catholic has been removed, This means the Earl of St. Andrews, Prince Michael of Kent, King Michael of Romania and Crown Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia, among others are again possible dynasts.
The Royal Marriages Act is no more. Only the first six in line to the throne will be required to seek permission to marry. If they do not, they (and their descendants) will lose their rights. Automatic.
As of today: the top six are the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Cambridge, Prince Harry of Wales, the Duke of York, Princess Beatrice of York and Princess Eugenie of York.
Princess Eugenie will fall to seventh place when the Duchess of Cambridge gives birth in July.
... and the biggest change: succession to the throne is now gender equal: the eldest child will be the heir apparent. No pesky little brother to push big sister out of the way. Male primogeniture was based largely on tradition in England, and, more recently, the United Kingdom. The Act of Settlement (1701) made no reference to male primogeniture. The Act remains valid with some tweaking (most notably, the removal of the loss of succession rights to possible dynasts who marry Roman Catholics.)
The United Kingdom becomes the seventh European monarchy to adopt gender equality for succession to the throne. The other countries are Sweden, the Netherlands, Norway, Belgium, Denmark and Luxembourg.
Although there was discussion in Spain to start the process to change the law, no legislation is pending in the Spanish Parliament. The Prince and Princess of Asturias are the parents of two daughters: Infanta Leonor and Infanta Sofia.
Louise Nicolson, a great-granddaughter of Princess Patricia of Connaught, is the last person to receive permission to marry according to Royal Marriages Act. Louise will marry Charles Morshead in May.