Palaces, expensive designer clothes, travel, jewels. Information about the life and property of the royals, as is used to say of members of the British royal family, fires the imagination. Especially the British, because every year they contribute to this prosperous life.
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The secret purse of Queen Elizabeth II
There are three sources of funding for the Queen and royal house officials. These are: sovereign subsidy, the so-called a secret purse and the Queen’s personal property and income. A sovereign grant is an amount paid by the government to the royal family to support the queen’s official duties, including the maintenance of the royal palaces: Buckingham Palace, St. James’s Palace, Clarence House, Marlborough House Mews, Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle and the so-called Great Park in Windsor. The secret purse is the definition of the income that the royal family derives from the Duchy of Lancaster, which includes land, real estate, and assets.
A personal investment portfolio is used to cover private expenses. The queen drew income from estates such as Balmoral and Sandringhamwhich she inherited from her father. The Queen’s assets often included an art collection and crown jewels. These, however, could not be included in the queen’s estate – they were not her private property. So they will go over to the successor, i.e. Prince Charles.
86 million pounds a year
The latest report for March 2020 to March 2021 shows that the royal family cost taxpayers £ 85.9 million – that was the sovereign subsidy. It was £ 3.5m higher than in 2019. This means that every Briton contributed £ 1.29 to support the royal family. Of nearly £ 86 million, £ 51.5 million was the basic grant that funded official travel, property maintenance and household operating costs. The rest, £ 34.4m, covers the ongoing maintenance costs of Buckingham Palace.
According to royal family accounts, official expenses in 2020 were higher than the sovereign grant and in addition to the income received. Net spending was £ 87.5m. This is an increase of 26 percent. compared to 2019 It was due to a significant increase in expenditure on the maintenance of Buckingham Palace. This cost 17.6 million pounds (an increase of 83%). The surplus of £ 2.3 million was covered by funds from the reserve under the sovereign grant.
The report also records £ 2.4 million in payments from the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Harry and Megan. They repaid a sovereign grant that was used to renovate the Frogmore Cottage property. Critics called on Harry and Meghan to pay off the millions they spent on renovating the property after they resigned as royalty and moved to the United States in early 2020.
The report also mentions Fr. the expenses of Prince Charles. He spent 3 million pounds on himself and his family, the salaries of butlers and employees, including some cooks and gardeners. The official costs of his London office and Clarence House residence reached 172,000. pounds.
Time to end monarchy?
The monarchy has for years been openly criticized by Graham Smith, the CEO of British Republicans. He calls for the abolition of the monarchy and the establishment of an elected head of state. In his opinion, the royal family is costing taxpayers more and more every year, while the country faces unprecedented pressure on other expenses. In his opinion, the real cost of maintaining the royal family is much higher than officially reported, and amounts to as much as £ 345 million a year.
Brand “Queen Elizabeth II” stronger than Coca-Cola
However, it must not be forgotten that Great Britain is gaining a lot from the royal family. Research carried out while recording the documentary “Elizabeth at 95: The Invincible Queen”, which can be viewed on Amazon, shows that Queen Elizabeth was a bigger global brand than many political, business, media and entertainment icons including Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, the Obamas, Kim Kardashian and Beyoncé. Research also shows that it has made the royal family the fifth largest “corporate brand” in the world, ahead of multinationals including Coca-Cola, Nike and Microsoft.
Brand and business experts interviewed for the program estimate the value of the royal family’s brand at approximately $ 100 billion and the value of the queen’s personal brand at approximately $ 50 billion. Brand Finance, a brand and business valuation consultancy, estimates the British monarchy’s capital as a company at £ 67.5bn. According to her estimates, the contribution of the monarchy brand to the economy of Great Britain is about 1.7 billion pounds per year.