Royal funding changes become law

 
The Queen The changes to the funding of the Royal Family have been attacked by campaigners Republic

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The biggest change for 250 years to the way the Royal Family is financed will be passed into law later.

The Civil List, which dates from 1760, and the grants paid for travel and upkeep of palaces are to be replaced by a single Sovereign Grant from 2013.

The size of the grant will be 15% of the profits made by the Crown Estate.

Buckingham Palace has called it "a modern, transparent and simpler way of funding the head of state", but critics say it is economically indefensible.

BBC royal correspondent Peter Hunt said: "The last significant parliamentary debate about royal finances took place in the year the current chancellor was born, and after Prince Philip had declared on American television his family was in the red and might have to move into smaller premises.

"Four decades on, the Queen's husband has remained silent while her nineteenth chancellor, George Osborne, has introduced a new Sovereign Grant."

After announcing the change in his Spending Review late last year, Mr Osborne said it should ensure "my successors do not have to return to this issue as often as I have had to".

Property portfolio

The Sovereign Grant Bill introduces a single payment given to the monarch based on 15% of the Crown Estate's revenue from two years previously.

Starting from 2013-14, this funding arrangement will last seven years before it is reviewed.

The Crown Estate has a property portfolio which includes, among other things, Regent Street, Windsor Great Park and much of the UK coastline.

The grant is expected to be £34m in the first year, in line with recent royal spending, our correspondent added.

In the past, the monarch received money from three different government departments: funds for the Civil List from the Treasury; a Department for Transport grant for travel costs; funds for maintenance of royal palaces and communications from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

The campaign group Republic, which calls for an elected head of state, has described the changes as economically and morally indefensible.

"Pegging royal funding to Crown Estate revenue makes no sense at all," it has argued.

"The two are not related. Crown Estate revenue has always been there to provide funds for the government."

It wants the monarchy to be subject to an annual budget, just like government departments.

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 442.

    435.The_Gambler

    The monarchy serves a vital purpose for the reasons I've already explained.

    437.Sixp

    A constitutional monarchy is very effective at defusing constitutional crises, as shown in other parts of the commonweath. In the 2008 Canadian parliamentary dispute, the govoner general was very effective at upholding the will of the people and keeping the government stable.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 441.

    425.The_Squirrel
    Nope, nope and nope! I I do work for a US firm and the amount of orders we received from staff based in NY for wedding gifts almost drive me up the wall!

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 440.

    320.stan howard
    2 Hours ago
    the scottish nationalists have found their voice again, they went very quiet during the bank bail outs.

    RBS and HBOS aren't Scottish banks; they haven't been for decades. They are mulitnationally-owned companies- shareholders all over the world. They just happen to have 'Scotland' in their company names and have an Edinburgh base for largely historical reasons.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 439.

    The crown has no legitimate right to the Crown Estates. Originally they were taken by conquest, ie stolen, then they were handed to parliament along with responsibility for funding the army, navy and national debt, amongst other liabilities. Strikes me they got a pretty good deal. Anyone who thinks the Queen would retain the estates should the monarchy end is very much mistaken.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 438.

    "Jay
    "The royal family are german"
    If you go back far enough so are the majority of people in this country - Anglo Saxon."

    Well, the Viking, Celtic and Ancient British peoples are also major contributors to the British gene pool as are the many peoples from around the Roman Empire brought along with the Roman legions.

    The Queen is half Scottish via her mother and Germano-Danish via her father.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 437.

    431.Adam
    "The Queens role in our constitution is to keep our system of parliamentary democracy stable, to prevent crises and to act as the last defence against a dictatorship"
    --
    Very amusing to think of the monarchy as a defender of democracy. I don't think history will back you up on this one.
    Also, in recent times I do recall Edward VIII was rather a big fan of Mr Hitler...

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 436.

    might help a bit if they stopped using the helicopter for 60mile journey's,sure they must have a full driving licence between them,poor things.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 435.

    431.Adam
    "The Queens role in our constitution is to keep our system of parliamentary democracy stable, to prevent crises and to act as the last defence against a dictatorship"

    Then why the swans, home counties, palaces, property and jewells?

    Rubbish. You're looking at something that's here because of our past; not because it serves a purpose.

  • rate this
    -3

    Comment number 434.

    By what measure do the Windsors 'work hard'? By what measure do they do a 'good job'? Cleaners, teachers, single parents, doctors, refuse collectors, volunteers - these people really do work hard without the privilege of vast wealth and complete security for which ordinary people pay. There isn't a single valid argument for keeping the royals. What is RIGHT? Democracy not birthright.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 433.

    ""How about President Attenborough? Or for a younger option, President Fry?"

    What training have they had for such a role? No thanks, I'll stick with the Professionals, they've been trained for the job, they are not amatures!"

    Of course, all that training! Who exactly did Prince Phillip's media training?! I reckon we could get Attenborough just as adept at waving, and cutting ribbons.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 432.

    18.TooShy - "... Scotland doesn't have a monarchy but plenty of tourists visit Scotland to see it's beautiful scenery and share it's culture..."

    Scotland has no Monarchy?

    Until such time as Scotland becomes independent, if that's what they want, then Scotland is part of the UK and therefore HM The Queen is Monarch of Scotland, as she is of Wales and Northern Ireland also

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 431.

    416.The Gentleman

    We all banifit from the monarchy.

    I fully support monarchy, and my reasons for doing so have nothing to do with tourism revenue.

    The Queens role in our constitution is to keep our system of parliamentary democracy stable, to prevent crises and to act as the last defence against a dictatorship.

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 430.

    426.Adam

    Other countries don't have a Queen. They aren't struggling. Clearly, she doesn't hold any vital position that cannot be filled.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 429.

    To: 408.Peter

    Peter, just where in my comment do I actually refer to Scotland having been a Republic. I actually stated that the years known as the Commonwealth was basically a republican [type] period. I will bow to your greater knowledge of Scottish history for the rest, as I was under the impression that at that time Scotland was part of Great Britain.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 428.

    395. ManUtd77

    389. Zalimbekir

    How many people did you ask in your survey? What nationalities were the people to whom you spoke? Were the questions you asked completely objective?
    --
    Spain, Holland, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium.. How many have you visited specifically because they have a royal family?

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 427.

    Worth every penny of it. Unlike the Olympic games which have cost millions and will last less than two months, the Royal Family bring massive amounts of money into the country every year.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 426.

    Good, so it will now be easier to claim that the Royal's don't scrounge off the tax payer and do have their own scource of income - the Crown estates.

    But you have to ask; is it fair that our head of state who does a wonderful job as out nations figurehead and plays a vital role in our consitiution is taxed at 85% on her earnings?

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 425.

    Jay

    PWC estimated hotels in london received a boost of 107mil while visit britain estimated a 2bil boost to the economy.

    Excellent stuff, thanks. Do you know how much was from foreign visitors and how much from UK royalists? Also, how much was from foreign tourists who came to the UK because of the wedding, and much was from tourists who were coming to the UK anyway?

  • rate this
    -4

    Comment number 424.

    416.The Gentleman
    The royal family themselves do NOT generate tourism!! The palaces etc. do but they would still be there were the monarchy abolished. And in actual fact around 100 times more people visited Alton Towers that Buckingham Palace last year...

  • rate this
    -4

    Comment number 423.

    inflation is over 5%,Osbournes murdered the economy,unemployment is sky high the country is dying to get better & the cure all for this is more taxes,more cuts & more support for the over stuffed greedy rich parasites in all thier pomp & circumstance,can truthfuly say i'm not a royal mug or 'tory one either.

 

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