Monarchy costs us 56p each a year

South Wales Argus: The monarchy cost each person in the UK 56p last year, royal aides claim The monarchy cost each person in the UK 56p last year, royal aides claim

THE monarchy cost the taxpayer £35.7 million in the last tax year - or 56p for each person in the country, Buckingham Palace accounts have revealed.

The Queen's official expenditure increased in actual terms by £2.4 million from the previous year, while the real terms rise was £1.9 million or 5.7%.

More than a third of the sovereign grant - the system of finance given from the public purse to support the official duties of the monarchy - was spent on maintaining palaces.

The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work.

A total of 133 projects costing more than £3,500 were carried out across the estate.

This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home.

The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable.

Around £1.1m was spent on the property the previous year, taking the total to prepare it for the couple and their son Prince George to move in to more than £4m excluding the work to remove asbestos.

Royal household sources said the apartment had required a "complete refit" and had problems such as no running water but the spending on it was now complete.

Furniture and fittings in the home, which is understood to have around 20 rooms, were met privately by the couple as well as a kitchen and they were said to be "at pains" to "bear down" on public costs.

"Some of the fit out we felt should be paid for privately," said an aide.

"The Cambridges have been extremely sensitive to the fact that public funds were paying for a lot of this work."

The source said the apartment was "not opulent", adding: "It is done to a very comfortable but ordinary level."

Other maintenance costs included £0.8m to remove asbestos in the basement floor ducts of Buckingham Palace and £0.9m on the renewal of lead roofing at Windsor Castle's Royal Library.

The accounts also showed the total cost of official travel by road, rail and air for almost 3,000 official royal engagements was £4.2m in 2013/2014 - a fall of £0.3m compared to the previous year.

Travel costs incurred by the Prince of Wales amounted to more than £1m, including £434,000 on his visit to India with the Duchess of Cornwall in November, £255,000 for him to attend Nelson Mandela's funeral in December and another £245,000 on a trip to the Middle East.

The accounts also showed that the total cost of staffing the Royal Household from public funds was £18.2m - a fall of £100,000 compared to the previous year.

The sovereign grant, calculated on a formula of 15% of profits from the Royal Estate was set at £36.1m for 2013/14.

The remaining £400,000 was put into the reserve funds.

Sir Alan Reid, keeper of the Privy Purse, said public funding of the monarchy had fallen by 8% in real terms in the last two years when maintenance costs are stripped out.

He added: "We take our responsibility to run as efficient an operation as possible.

"In our view we think that we do as good a job as possible in terms of trying maximise the value for money."

The total amount of public funds spent on the Cambridges' residence, including the removal of asbestos contamination, was around £4.5 million.

Royal documents said the work also included new heating, hot and cold water, electrical services and a "simple redecoration". Carpets, curtains and furnishings, along with William and Kate's family kitchen, were paid for privately.

A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963.

"It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again. This is the couple's one and only official residence and it is here they plan to stay for many, many years to come."

The work was complicated by the fact that the property is a scheduled ancient monument, he added, and all of the elements of the refurbishment had to be agreed with English Heritage.

William Nye, principal private secretary to the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, hinted that they had helped with the private costs of refurbishing the Kensington Palace apartment.

He said: "Young couples setting up home receive some help from their parents or grandparents. Some assistance may have been provided."

Under the funding formula for the sovereign grant, which replaced the old Civil List and grants-in-aid, the public funding of the monarchy will be set at £37.9m for the current tax year.

A backlog of required maintenance makes up a large share of official spending, with a survey in December finding that 40% of the Royal Estate was "below target condition".

Asked whether the funds are enough, a royal source said: "We would like it to be more. We don't like having a property backlog hanging over us. We would like to have enough money to get that fixed... (but) we accept that in recent years the economy has been in such a state that that has been entirely unrealistic."

The report, which is published today, also detailed the busy schedule undertaken by the Queen in the last year, with the 88-year-old undertaking 309 public engagements in the UK, although she carried out none abroad.

Sir Alan said: "The Queen is busier than ever, which perhaps belies reports that she was easing up."

The accounts also showed a total of £2m was spent on housekeeping and hospitality, with £1.3m going on food and drink and £0.7m on cleaning, laundry and other services across the official royal residences. The figure was £100,000 higher than the previous year.

The amount spent protecting members of the royal family is not included in the accounts for security reasons. A royal source said these were costs created by terrorism rather than the monarchy.

It was also confirmed that the monarchy has entered into an annually renewable lease with helicopter firm AgustaWestland for a minimum of 150 charter hours for a chopper that will be operated by crew from the Queen's Helicopter Flight.

Do you think paying 56p each per year for the monarchy is value for money? Let us know.

Comments (13)

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12:27pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Ultimate Worrier says...

No, it's not worth the money. You should be given the optin to opt out,. Why doesn't everyone give me 56p a year? I'll fly around the world in private jets waving at idiots, whilst doing precisely nothing as well if I must.

Seeing as the Proceeds of Crime Act strips assets from families who obtained their goods through illegal activities, should this lot not be subject to the same? After all, their ancestors wrestled power illegally; if this happened today there would be uproar.

Time to join the 21st century.
No, it's not worth the money. You should be given the optin to opt out,. Why doesn't everyone give me 56p a year? I'll fly around the world in private jets waving at idiots, whilst doing precisely nothing as well if I must. Seeing as the Proceeds of Crime Act strips assets from families who obtained their goods through illegal activities, should this lot not be subject to the same? After all, their ancestors wrestled power illegally; if this happened today there would be uproar. Time to join the 21st century. Ultimate Worrier
  • Score: -10

12:39pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Sing up for the amber boys says...

Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull.

"The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. "
"This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home."
"The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. "
"A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again."

Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin
Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull. "The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. " "This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home." "The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. " "A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again." Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin Sing up for the amber boys
  • Score: -7

12:41pm Thu 26 Jun 14

golfer says...

It's money well spent ..we need the monarchy in the uk ..such a small value per person ..keep up the good work Queeny ..
It's money well spent ..we need the monarchy in the uk ..such a small value per person ..keep up the good work Queeny .. golfer
  • Score: 2

12:59pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Walter Devereux says...

Statistics such as 56p per head prove nothing. The Monarchy is invaluable as a tourist aid which brings far more into this country than an elected head of state would.
Statistics such as 56p per head prove nothing. The Monarchy is invaluable as a tourist aid which brings far more into this country than an elected head of state would. Walter Devereux
  • Score: 7

1:06pm Thu 26 Jun 14

throwy1 says...

The Monarchy is worth every penny spent on it. The Monarchy goes hand in glove with Pagentry and History. Britain is rich in all three and the majority of the World would give their eye teeth to have the same as us, especially good ol Uncle Sam.

UKIP voter
The Monarchy is worth every penny spent on it. The Monarchy goes hand in glove with Pagentry and History. Britain is rich in all three and the majority of the World would give their eye teeth to have the same as us, especially good ol Uncle Sam. UKIP voter throwy1
  • Score: 3

1:41pm Thu 26 Jun 14

-trigg- says...

Using the figures within this article,

£13.3m or one third of this amount was spent on restoration and renovation of the royal palaces. This money would have been spent on these historical buildings regardless of whether we retained a monarchy or not. Travel costs for 3000 Royal engagements accounted for a further £4.2m of the total, whilst staffing costs accounted for another £18.2m.

Added together, that totals £35.7m which is just £400,000 less than the total sovereign grant. On that basis, it would appear that the royal family offer incredible value for money, particularly when you consider the tourist revenue they attract and the assistance their presence provides when negotiating lucrative trade deals for the country.
Using the figures within this article, £13.3m or one third of this amount was spent on restoration and renovation of the royal palaces. This money would have been spent on these historical buildings regardless of whether we retained a monarchy or not. Travel costs for 3000 Royal engagements accounted for a further £4.2m of the total, whilst staffing costs accounted for another £18.2m. Added together, that totals £35.7m which is just £400,000 less than the total sovereign grant. On that basis, it would appear that the royal family offer incredible value for money, particularly when you consider the tourist revenue they attract and the assistance their presence provides when negotiating lucrative trade deals for the country. -trigg-
  • Score: 6

2:05pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Dai Rear says...

Sing up for the amber boys wrote:
Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull.

"The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. "
"This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home."
"The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. "
"A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again."

Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin
Yep, everyone who isn't a republican is stupid , that's it. Since there's nothing whatsoever stopping intelligentsia like you going to live in a republican paradise, why not catch the next flight to Harare? Then you'd have no more need to moan.
[quote][p][bold]Sing up for the amber boys[/bold] wrote: Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull. "The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. " "This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home." "The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. " "A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again." Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin[/p][/quote]Yep, everyone who isn't a republican is stupid , that's it. Since there's nothing whatsoever stopping intelligentsia like you going to live in a republican paradise, why not catch the next flight to Harare? Then you'd have no more need to moan. Dai Rear
  • Score: 1

3:20pm Thu 26 Jun 14

gingertom says...

I don't want to pay 56p for camilla to have a private residence besides her home at clarence house, highgrove, birkhall, etc.

She has never worked in her life and got on by deliberately harming another person. No Thanks!
I don't want to pay 56p for camilla to have a private residence besides her home at clarence house, highgrove, birkhall, etc. She has never worked in her life and got on by deliberately harming another person. No Thanks! gingertom
  • Score: -5

6:51pm Thu 26 Jun 14

Sing up for the amber boys says...

Dai Rear wrote:
Sing up for the amber boys wrote:
Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull.

"The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. "
"This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home."
"The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. "
"A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again."

Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin
Yep, everyone who isn't a republican is stupid , that's it. Since there's nothing whatsoever stopping intelligentsia like you going to live in a republican paradise, why not catch the next flight to Harare? Then you'd have no more need to moan.
I'm not a Republican - I support us having a Monarchy. I just think it should be smaller (i.e getting rid of the long list of dukes, duchesses, earls etc.) and less opulent (e.g residential refurbishments to the tune of millions). Examples of how a good monarchy should be run can be found in Scandanavia where the monarchies are far more on touch with the people
[quote][p][bold]Dai Rear[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sing up for the amber boys[/bold] wrote: Anyone with half a brain can work out that this "56p" figure is propganda bull. "The accounts show spending on property maintenance increased by £4.2m to £13.3m - a real terms rise of 45% as the Royal Family attempted to tackle a "backlog" of restoration work. " "This included £3.4m to refurbish of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's family home." "The apartment at 1A Kensington Palace was "completely reserviced" from April last year following the removal of asbestos that had made the property uninhabitable. " "A Kensington Palace spokesman said: "Before the project started, the residence was in a state of disrepair. It was last refurbished in 1963. It has required a significant amount of work to make it inhabitable again." Do me a favour. Of course, the Sun readers and UKIP voters will be too thick to see through the spin[/p][/quote]Yep, everyone who isn't a republican is stupid , that's it. Since there's nothing whatsoever stopping intelligentsia like you going to live in a republican paradise, why not catch the next flight to Harare? Then you'd have no more need to moan.[/p][/quote]I'm not a Republican - I support us having a Monarchy. I just think it should be smaller (i.e getting rid of the long list of dukes, duchesses, earls etc.) and less opulent (e.g residential refurbishments to the tune of millions). Examples of how a good monarchy should be run can be found in Scandanavia where the monarchies are far more on touch with the people Sing up for the amber boys
  • Score: 3

4:20am Fri 27 Jun 14

Dai Rear says...

Well go there then. I understand you can get steak chips and a pint in Stockholm for under £60. Me, I'll stick to old Liz-and Wetherspoons.
Well go there then. I understand you can get steak chips and a pint in Stockholm for under £60. Me, I'll stick to old Liz-and Wetherspoons. Dai Rear
  • Score: 0

4:21am Fri 27 Jun 14

Dai Rear says...

PS due to a computer glitch, presumably, you cannot subscribe to articles on this website
PS due to a computer glitch, presumably, you cannot subscribe to articles on this website Dai Rear
  • Score: 0

1:35pm Fri 27 Jun 14

welshmen says...

Great Britain is a Christian Country, our Queen is the defender of the Christian faith, our Country is envied all over the world because of our Monarchy and Democracy, if you want a banana republic move to one, or do what all republicans do best Moan....56p a year, cheaper than chip's....
Great Britain is a Christian Country, our Queen is the defender of the Christian faith, our Country is envied all over the world because of our Monarchy and Democracy, if you want a banana republic move to one, or do what all republicans do best Moan....56p a year, cheaper than chip's.... welshmen
  • Score: -1

3:21pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Raymond Luxury-Yacht says...

welshmen wrote:
Great Britain is a Christian Country, our Queen is the defender of the Christian faith, our Country is envied all over the world because of our Monarchy and Democracy, if you want a banana republic move to one, or do what all republicans do best Moan....56p a year, cheaper than chip's....
You are living in a dream world, pal. Envied for Monarchy Democracy? Keep smoking you weed or taking your pills you poor deluded soul.
[quote][p][bold]welshmen[/bold] wrote: Great Britain is a Christian Country, our Queen is the defender of the Christian faith, our Country is envied all over the world because of our Monarchy and Democracy, if you want a banana republic move to one, or do what all republicans do best Moan....56p a year, cheaper than chip's....[/p][/quote]You are living in a dream world, pal. Envied for Monarchy Democracy? Keep smoking you weed or taking your pills you poor deluded soul. Raymond Luxury-Yacht
  • Score: 2
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