Buckingham Palace accounts revealed

Buckingham Palace accounts revealed
The cost of the monarchy to the public reached £35.7m – 56p per person – in the last tax year, Buckingham Palace accounts have revealed.

The Queen”s official expenditure from the sovereign grant – the system of finance given from the public purse to support the monarchy – shows a rise of £1.9m from the previous year.

More than a third of the funding was spent on the maintenance and restoration of royal properties including Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Apartment 1A at Kensington Palace, where Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, reside with Prince George.

A total of £13.3m went towards a “backlog” of restoration work, which included the removal of asbestos and the overcoming of problems such as no running water at Apartment 1A.

William and Kate”s home underwent a “completely reservice”, but while major works were covered by public funding, the royal couple are understood to have met with the costs of internal furnishings such as a new kitchen.

The Christopher Wren-designed 20-room living quarters were last refurbished in 1963. Public spending on its renovation has totalled £4.5m over the last two years.

Other work included the removal of asbestos in the basement of Buckingham Palace and new lead roofing at the Royal Library at Windsor Castle, where staff had reportedly used buckets to catch rain and protect art and antiquities.

The royal family”s travel costs show that Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall”s visit to India totalled £434,000, while a charter flight to attend the funeral of Nelson Mandela cost £246,160.

Sir Alan Reid, keeper of the Privy Purse, said: “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 to maximise the value for money.”