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The latest accounts show that the cost of the Royals went up in the last financial year

The Royal Family’s finances for the last year have been published and show that costs went up by over 40% for 2018/19, compared to the previous twelve months. Much of the rise is down to the ongoing work being carried out at Buckingham Palace which is undergoing an extensive ten year refurbishment. The latest figures are equivalent to a £1.24 cost to everyone living in the UK right now.

The details were revealed in the Sovereign Grant Report, published on June 25th 2019, outlining the financial year 2018/2019. The Sovereign Grant is the money provided to support the Queen’s official duties. It also covers maintenance of the occupied Royal Palaces.

The total Sovereign Grant for 2018/19 was £82.2 million, made up of a Core Grant of £49.3 million and an additional amount of money for reservicing Buckingham Palace totalling £32.9 million. Of that £82.2 million, £15.2 million was transferred to the Sovereign Grant Reserve meaning that the total costs for the Monarchy in 2018/2019 were £67 million.

The costs last year included £4.6 million to cover official travel for the Queen and her family. Housekeeping and hospitality cost the royals £2.3 million with £1.7 million going on food and drink.

Also among last years costs was the £2.4 million spent on the refurbishment of Frogmore Cottage at Windsor, the new home of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The work done on the property, which Harry and Meghan moved into just before the birth of their son in May 2019, included replacing worn out ceiling and floor joists and the installation of gas and water mains. The couple paid for the fixtures and fittings of their new home themselves.

The royal accounts also showed that the cost of travel carried out by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, which includes more overseas visits on behalf of the Queen, went up to £1.3 million. The report also highlighted an increase in carbon emissions arising from trips made by the Royal Family – there was a 98% rise year on year, owing in part to more use of large chartered air flights to carry out trips abroad.

The latest figures also show the costs of the public duties of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for the past year. These bills were paid for by the Prince of Wales and came to £5.05 million.

The official expenses of the Queen and her family are funded by the Sovereign Grant which is given in return for the surrender of the revenue from the Crown Estate, one of the wealthiest property portfolios in the world. Last year, the estate brought in revenues of £343.5 million for the UK Treasury.

About author

Lydia Starbuck is Associate Editor at Royal Central and the main producer and presenter of the Royal Central Podcast and Royal Central Extra. Lydia is also a pen name of June Woolerton, a journalist and writer with over twenty years experience in TV, radio, print and online. June has been a reporter, producer and editor, picking up several awards over the years. She's appeared on outlets including BBC 5 Live, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Local Radio and has also helped set up a commercial radio station. June is also an accomplished writer with a wide range of material published online and in print. She is the author of two novels, published as e-books. She is also a marriage registrar and ceremony celebrant.