Buckingham Palace spending tops £100 million as repair work is ramped up

Spending by the Royal Family exceeded its income from public funds last year and topped £100 million as the programme of repair works on Buckingham Palace was stepped up.

The Royal Household spent £16.1 million more than it earned from the Sovereign Grant – the publicly funded part of the Royal Family’s income.

The annual report of palace finances shows it received £51.8 million for the day-to-day running of the monarchy and an extra £34.5 million for the Buckingham Palace redevelopment – referred to by the household as “Reservicing”.

But total spending last year was £102.4 million as the building work on the palace reached an intensive phase.

The 40% increase on the repair bills for Buckingham Palace – which is mid-way through a 10 year refit – was needed to get the building ready to host the Platinum Jubilee celebrations at the beginning of June.

The Keeper of the Privy Purse, Sir Michael Stevens, who controls royal finances said: “There was a significant increase in work against a hard deadline to enable Buckingham Palace to be at the centre of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations.”

Aides say costs shot up as they rushed to get everything ready for the Jubilee weekend. Credit: PA

The total repair bill for the palace re-building works remains the same at £369 million.

It means that palace accountants had to take some extra money from the reserve it has built up in previous years when they underspent on the repair works.

Once again, it is the cost of travel for members of the Royal Family which stands out and a senior royal source admitted that travel costs were a constant “tension” which they had to manage.

The Prince of Wales‘ visit to Barbados last November to attend the handover ceremony when it transitioned from Monarchy to a republic cost £138,457.

Prince William and Kate‘s royal tour to Belize, Jamaica and The Bahamas, during which they faced criticism over their response to protests about the slave tradecost £226,383.

The largest bill for the Royal Train was when the Queen went to Scotland last June.

The train fare was £46,442.


Listen to the latest royal news and analysis on our podcast, Royal Rota

Prince Charles and Camilla spent £15,920 on a helicopter for a visit to Wales in July 2021.

Royal sources said they had to balance the demand for them to do their jobs across the UK and around the world, with the need to keep travel costs and carbon emission down.

A senior aide in Prince Charles’ office said the prince was encouraging greater use of Sustainable Aviation Fuel and admitted that the prince, who campaigns on climate change, is “pretty allergic” to using the helicopter.

Sources in Clarence House insisted that the helicopter is only used “if every other option has failed.”

Aside from his travel costs, the income for the Prince of Wales comes from the Duchy of Cornwall estate.

It was set up in 1337 as a source of funds for the heir to the throne which is independent from the Sovereign.

It is the Duchy of Cornwall which pays for William and Kate’s running costs, but the Duchy never reveals exactly how much that is.

The Duchy used to fund Harry and Meghan’s office but royal sources now say that the Sussexes are now “fully financially independent” as they had intended to be.

Leave a Comment