Royal family costs equivalent of 15,000 firefighters, 17,000 police: New report

26 June 2017

Ahead of the release of the Royal Household's annual finance report, campaigners have said the true cost of the monarchy is over £345m a year.

That's the equivalent to the cost of hiring 17,000 new police officers or 15,500 new firefighters.

Campaign group Republic has published a new, updated report called Royal Expenses: Counting the Cost of the monarchy. [pdf]

The report details how a number of hidden costs, including security, costs met by local councils and revenue from the Duchies of Cornwall and Lancaster, put the annual bill at £345m.

The report also debunks claims that the royals generate revenue for Britain - and asks whether the monarchy is corrupt.

Republic's CEO, Graham Smith, said today:

"The royals need to stop pretending they are value for money.  Their official grant has gone up 145% since 2012, their total cost to the taxpayer is more than £345m a year."

"This is what happens when people are secretive and unaccountable.  An elected head of state would be subjected to the scrutiny and accountability needed to keep costs down."

"This massive bill for the taxpayer is supporting privileged lifestyles: helicopter flights around the country, palatial homes, round-the-clock security for minor royals who should pay their own way, and millions of pounds in cash handed to the family by the two Duchies."

"Royal spending is unethical and out of control - how can we say it isn't corrupt?"

"And we need to get away from the fantasy that the royals bring money into the country.  That claim just isn't supported by the evidence.  There is no revenue coming in that wouldn't continue to come in if the monarchy was abolished."

"When our police, NHS, schools and fire services are struggling, how can we continue to justify this huge waste of money?"

NOTES

  • The Crown Estate is owned by the nation, its revenue would continue to go to the government if Britain were a republic.  The Sovereign Grant is paid for by the government, not by the Crown Estate.
  • The total cost of £345m is made up of the Sovereign Grant and a number of other figures, all detailed in the report at www.republic.org.uk/royalexpensesreport
  • The report was recently launched outside Buckingham Palace: Photo

The total is broken down as follows (more detail and sources in the report):
 

Cost                                                                               

£m

 

 

Sovereign Grant:                                                                               

76.1

Annuity for Duke of Edinburgh:                                                        

0.4

State buildings used by royal family:                                              

30.0

Duchy of Cornwall profits/gains – lost:                                           

25.8

Duchy of Lancaster profits/gains – lost:                                         

68.7

Royal Collection net surplus – lost:                                                

2.6

Cost to local councils:                                                                      

22.2

Royal Household Pension Scheme:                                               

2.3

Security:                                                                                             

106.0

Costs met by Government Departments and the Crown Estate:

3.8

Cost of Lord Lieutenants:                                                                

2.2

Bona vacantia proceeds – Duchy of Cornwall:                              

0.1

Bona vacantia proceeds – Duchy of Lancaster:                            

5.0

Civil list pensions:                                                                             

0.1

 

345.3