Freethinkeruk’s Weblog

UK Political weblog

Sponging Royals at it Again

buck-house This building on the left is of course Buckingham Palace, one of the official residences of the Queen. There is something of an ownership blur here as the Queen does not actually own it but holds it in trust for the nation. The Royal Household is paid an allowance for it’s upkeep from the Government who are frequently asked for yet more millions.

Alan Reid, ‘keeper of the privy purse’, appeared before the public accounts committee yesterday to explain what steps were being taken to find the £32m that needs to be spent on repairing royal palaces. It has been suggested, by MPs amongst others, that there is enormous scope for income generation simply by opening the Palace more often to tourists. Not surprisingly the Royals are resisting this idea and even came up with the lame excuse that they wouldn’t be able to find the staff to keep it open all year. I doubt they would have any trouble finding staff even without the recession and rising unemployment.

Alan Reid also suggested that it would be inappropriate for the public to be allowed access during state visits to the palace by foreign heads of state. Well how come The White House is open all year round, surely their guests are just as important as those visiting Buck House?

The Government should take over complete control of the Palaces and use them to generate income for their upkeep and probably some left over for the Exchequer, instead of continually paying out for them. The Royal Household obviously thinks that the people don’t mind them being inefficient and are  happy to keep handing over millions on demand.

Let’s face it, The Tower of London needs maintenance but still manages to make a handsome profit.

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