Let the whinging commence! British taxpayers may have been dismayed to learn that they covered the cost of rebuilding the royal home of Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex paid for furnishings, fixtures and fittings at their residence near Windsor Castle, called Frogmore Cottage. But the $3.06 million project at Frogmore also turned five properties into a single house for the royal couple and their infant son, Archie.
The cost of the project was included in the royal family accounts released Tuesday, showing that British taxpayers covered $85.2 million of monarchy costs in the 2018-2019 fiscal year — a whopping 41 percent more than in the previous year.
The main reason for the increased spending on the monarchy was the rising cost of a 10-year renovation of Buckingham Palace in London, which began after a Treasury report determined that the structure of the palace was vulnerable to catastrophic failure.
According to Michael Stevens, who oversees the royal family accounts as keeper of the Privy Purse, the Frogmore property “had not been the subject of work for some years and had already been earmarked for renovation.”
Graham Smith, a spokesman for Republic, an anti-monarchy group, questioned the multi-million cost of the Frogmore project at a time when public services lack funding.
The Sovereign Grant, which funds Queen Elizabeth II and covers the official expenses of her household, totals $104 million — and equates to $1.58 per UK citizen. The royal family had 3,200 official engagements in 2018-19. [Page Six] – Mike Seemuth