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Queen to receive £6m pay increase from public funds

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    Queen Elizabeth IIImage copyright EPA

    The Queen is to receive an 8% increase in her income from public funds, after the Crown Estate posted a £24m rise in profits.

    The Sovereign Grant, which pays for the salaries of her household, official travel and upkeep of palaces, is to be £82.2m in 2018/19 – up more than £6m.

    The grant is based on the profits of the Crown Estate portfolio, which includes much of London’s West End.

    The Crown Estate posted a £24.7m rise in profits, to £328.8m, in 2016/17.

    The increase in funding will take place as extensive repairs are being carried out at Buckingham Palace, costing £369m.

    To help pay for the work at the palace, the percentage of the Crown Estate profits paid to the Queen will increase from 15% to 25% between 2017 and 2027.

    It comes as accounts revealed the Queen’s official net expenditure increased by £2m, to almost £42m, last year.

    The Queen and the Royal Family’s official travel cost the taxpayer £4.5m during 2016/17, up £500,000.

    Clarence House has also released its annual accounts, which showed the Prince of Wales’ annual income from his hereditary estate, the Duchy of Cornwall, increased by 1.2% – to £20.7m.

    Image copyright PA

    Sir Alan Reid, Keeper of the Privy Purse, said the Queen represented “value for money”.

    “When you look at these accounts, the bottom line is the Sovereign Grant last year equated to 65p per person, per annum, in the United Kingdom.

    “That’s the price of a first class stamp,” he added.

    “Consider that against what the Queen does and represents for this country, I believe it represents excellent value for money.”

    However, Republic, which campaigns for an elected head of state, published its own report on royal expenses.

    It said, once security and other costs were included, the annual bill for the monarchy was nearer £345m.

    View the original article:

    Graham Smith, the organisation’s chief executive, said said that was a “massive bill for the taxpayer” to support “privileged lifestyles”.

    Image copyright Reuters

    What is the Crown Estate?

    • It is an independent commercial property business and one of the largest property portfolios in the UK
    • Most of the portfolio is made up of residential property, commercial offices, shops, businesses, and retail parks
    • The estate started in 1760 when it was agreed that surplus revenue from the crown’s estate would go to the Treasury and, in return, the monarch would receive an annual payment
    • The estate belongs to the monarch for the duration of their reign, but cannot be sold by them and profits go to the Treasury
    • The monarch is then given 15% of the annual surplus of the estate, known as the Sovereign Grant, to support official duties – from funds two years in arrears
    • This percentage will increase from 15% to 25% between 2017 to 2027 to help pay for a £369m refurbishment of Buckingham Palace

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