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Jun 22nd, 2005, 08:55 PM
Royal spending falls to 36.7m

Simon Jeffery
Wednesday June 22, 2005

Details of the Buckingham Palace finances were released today, showing a 100,000 decrease in overall spending but a rise three times that amount in the cost of royal travel.
The Queen's expenditure as head of state, which relates to her official duties, fell from 36.8m in 2003-04 to 36.7m in 2004-05 - a drop of 0.3%, or 2.3% in real terms.

Civil list funding for the Queen's staff and her household running costs accounted for 10.6m of the total expenditure but the bulk of the spending came as grants-in-aid - 14.7m for the maintenance of occupied palaces, and 5m on royal travel.


The travel spending - up from 4.7m in 2003-04 - included an official trip by the Prince of Wales to Sri Lanka, Australia and back from Fiji on a chartered plane that cost nearly 300,000.
The Queen's aides insisted the report showed the monarchy was value for money. Alan Reid, Keeper of the Privy Purse, said the royal family cost each person in the country 61p a year.

"We believe this represents a value for money monarchy. We're not looking to provide the cheapest monarchy. We're looking at one of good value and good quality," he said.

Mr Reid, the accounts reveal, is the Queen's highest paid executive out of the civil list, and a 7,000 pay rise in 2004 took his salary to 172,298 a year.

Savings in overall expenditure came from a 1.8m reduction in property spending, arising largely from a business rate rebate on Buckingham Palace of more than 1m after officials fought off a 100% increase in the building's rateable value from Westminster council.

Accountants at Buckingham Palace also managed to reduce the royal insurance bill by 50%.

But the financial report said these savings, and others relating to the completion of large maintenance projects, were offset by increases in employment costs, visits from heads of state and major overseas tours.

Differences in travel costs between members of the royal family were also apparent.

A scheduled flight by the Duke of Edinburgh to Toronto to attend a gala celebrating his International Award Association came to around 12,800.

But when Charles flew to Washington for former US president Ronald Reagan's funeral, the chartered plane was priced at 85,000. Aides said it was hard to keep costs down when royals attended funerals because of the short notice.

A 400,000 increase in the amount spent on aeroplanes from 2003-04 to 2004-05 was put down to transferring the cost of the Duke of York's travels to promote British industry from the Department for Transport to the royal travel grant. In the year to March 2005, 1.2m was spent on aeroplanes, 2.1m on helicopters and 700,000 on trains from the fund.

Catering and garden parties were priced at 900,000, with the Queen's assets including 400,000 of wine held in stock to age.

The Queen also has assets of 200,000 in books on the balance sheet and 300,000 in "horses and liveries". Animal lovers will be pleased to note the accounts show no "disposals" in this column for the 2004-05 financial year.

____

Eek. IMO, they equal waste of space. Except William :drool:

CondiLicious
Jun 22nd, 2005, 09:00 PM
Well... I don't like the Windsors but they bring in the tourists! Which is good for the economy and yeah... They're good to laugh at.

Kart
Jun 22nd, 2005, 09:01 PM
Britain does not need a royal family, but I have no problem with them being there.

Unlike many who seem to think that 'dethroning' them would free us from some major dictatorship :yawn:.

Maintaining them is nothing compared to the wastage of money in the NHS for example.

-Ph51-
Jun 22nd, 2005, 09:33 PM
Well... I don't like the Windsors but they bring in the tourists! Which is good for the economy and yeah... They're good to laugh at.
Their real name is Hannover ;)

Josh B.
Jun 22nd, 2005, 09:45 PM
The royal Family went down hill centuries ago!

BRING BACK EDWARD 1st

-Kieron-
Jun 22nd, 2005, 10:13 PM
Yes we do. Britain wouldnt be Britain without them.

And William nice? He looks more and more like Charles everday.

CJ07
Jun 22nd, 2005, 10:29 PM
I agree, as an outsider Britain wouldn't be Britain without the royal family

Jakeev
Jun 23rd, 2005, 12:27 PM
I could not imagine an England without a Royal Family. It just would seem wierd. Plus, it would be a shame to not see all those cool titles some of the citizens get like Baron, Lord and Dame.:lol:

tennislover
Jun 23rd, 2005, 12:33 PM
well that's an important touristic and media attraction..... ;)

fifiricci
Jun 23rd, 2005, 12:56 PM
The individual members of the Royal Family are, almost without exception, tossers and very few Brits really respect them or take them at all seriously (they have nothing really serious to do anyway).

However, I voted to save the RF in this poll purely because the monarchy in the UK is an ENORMOUS tourist attraction and worth much more than the money the government spends to keep Prince Andrew in executive travel. The citizens of even die hard republics like the US and wannabe republics like Australia ;) can't seem to get enough of our monarchical institutions when they visit and the same fascination seems to extend to a lot of European countries too.

Keep it going while all that is profitable, would be my advice!

Lord Nelson
Jun 23rd, 2005, 12:57 PM
I'm no lover of monarchies but if the British monarchy ends then that will spell the end of Great Britain. Scotland became part of Great Britain when King James of Scotland succeeded the childless Queen Elisabeth I of England and the union of England and Scotland (along with Ireland and Wales) came to be known as Great Britain. I think that the monarchy system also solidifyed the Spanish union. Without it Catalonia may be as aggressive as the Basque regions to get out of Spain. If Yugoslavia had a monarchy system after WWII then I think that Yugoslavia would still exist today.

tennislover
Jun 23rd, 2005, 01:00 PM
because the monarchy in the UK is an ENORMOUS tourist attraction and worth much more than the money the government spends to keep Prince Andrew in executive travel. The citizens of even die hard republics like the US and wannabe republics like Australia ;) can't seem to get enough of our monarchical institutions when they visit and the same fascination seems to extend to a lot of European countries too.

Keep it going while all that is profitable, would be my advice!

you read my mind

wurzelman
Jun 23rd, 2005, 01:17 PM
Their real name is Hannover ;)

No, it's actually Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.

Sam L
Jun 23rd, 2005, 01:23 PM
No, it's actually Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.
Yeah I was just going to say that.

House of Hanover ended with Victoria.

Oh and yes BRITAIN needs the monarchy. It's a part of its history. It needs it like it needs the "Church of England" even if you're not Christian or religious. Except, it's more important.

Britain has the oldest monarchy in Europe aside from the Papacy. So it's pretty special.

The problem is I don't like the new royals like Prince Charles, William et al.

Queen Elizabeth II is the last of her kind. The world has changed too much in the last 50 or so years for me to really admire any contemporary royals anymore.

Unless, if they happen to be VERY, VERY old-fashioned.

Halardfan
Jun 23rd, 2005, 02:37 PM
No, I think its time to get rid of them, though it won't happen...

Doubtless the tourist industry would take a knock but that is a minor thing really...this is an issue about whether Britian today is about merit or foolish notions of class and breeding...

What did those centuries of kings and queens bring us anyway? Wars and conflict often with little reason, thousands dead and endless war thanks to royal whims and petty feuds.

The Queen and her family are no better than me, and I won't bow and scrape to her and her ilk.

Jakeev
Jun 23rd, 2005, 03:34 PM
[QUOTE=Chris Ba

The Queen and her family are no better than me, and I won't bow and scrape to her and her ilk.[/QUOTE]

Well most don't do that anymore I thought? I know at Wimbledon the players are no longer required to curtsy or bow.

But I pretty much thought most citizens stopped that long ago.

Halardfan
Jun 23rd, 2005, 04:33 PM
I didn't mean just literally...what Im suggesting is that I think there still lingers in some areas of British society, a thought that you should somehow know your place, that the royals are our betters...certainly among the older generation this view still holds sway. Its all about the remains of the class system. I detest and resent the snoberry of it all.

I reject the idea that there is anything inherently remarkable about the Royals, therefore the time for figuratively or indeed literally bowing and scraping to them has long since gone.

Its a choice between having proper modern democracy or being a novelty royal theme park for the sake of the tourists.

-Ph51-
Jun 23rd, 2005, 06:57 PM
Yeah I was just going to say that.

House of Hanover ended with Victoria.

Oh and yes BRITAIN needs the monarchy. It's a part of its history. It needs it like it needs the "Church of England" even if you're not Christian or religious. Except, it's more important.

Britain has the oldest monarchy in Europe aside from the Papacy. So it's pretty special.

The problem is I don't like the new royals like Prince Charles, William et al.

Queen Elizabeth II is the last of her kind. The world has changed too much in the last 50 or so years for me to really admire any contemporary royals anymore.

Unless, if they happen to be VERY, VERY old-fashioned.
Then it should be Battenberg, no?

*JR*
Jun 23rd, 2005, 07:08 PM
They're a bunch of welfare recipients who should go out and earn an honest living! :rolleyes:

CooCooCachoo
Jun 23rd, 2005, 07:25 PM
No.

Let those people work for their money.

They wear better clothes, drive fancier cars and live in homes way bigger than the tax payers.

And they don't even have to pay taxes for the social benefits of people who actually need them.

Jakeev
Jun 23rd, 2005, 08:10 PM
I didn't mean just literally...what Im suggesting is that I think there still lingers in some areas of British society, a thought that you should somehow know your place, that the royals are our betters...certainly among the older generation this view still holds sway. Its all about the remains of the class system. I detest and resent the snoberry of it all.

I reject the idea that there is anything inherently remarkable about the Royals, therefore the time for figuratively or indeed literally bowing and scraping to them has long since gone.

Its a choice between having proper modern democracy or being a novelty royal theme park for the sake of the tourists.

I totally understand what you are saying. Nobody wants to be looked down upon by anybody.

But in an earlier post I had mentioned how cool I thought it was that you are given titles like Baron and Dame.

Are these not titles that are given by the Royal family, twice every year, for the most part, to ordinary citizens?

I think these honors where just given out a few weeks ago and when I was reading about them, the majority of those honored were rather tickled pink to be given these titles. (althought it's confusing to understand what MBE's are to OBE's)

So althought I can understand what you are implying, there still seems to be some relative importance to having royalty in England, even if it's not what it used to be in your nation's history.

Halardfan
Jun 23rd, 2005, 09:43 PM
I think, at least in general, the honours are picked out via the government, or some body advising the government...the royal bit of the sytem is really just window dressing, you could certainly have some way of honouring citizens without having the royal dimension.

alexusjonesfan
Jun 23rd, 2005, 09:53 PM
Please, let them stay. If the Queen stopped being Canada's head of state, we'd have to get an elected president or something :(

CondiLicious
Jun 23rd, 2005, 10:34 PM
And William nice? He looks more and more like Charles everday.

He even has a bald patch like his dad now :lol:

I prefer Harry.

Kart
Jun 23rd, 2005, 10:45 PM
I prefer Harry.

Who looks less and less like Charles every day :tape:.

Kart
Jun 23rd, 2005, 10:55 PM
I didn't mean just literally...what Im suggesting is that I think there still lingers in some areas of British society, a thought that you should somehow know your place, that the royals are our betters...

That's not really got much to do with the royals as much as it has to do with money though.

There are servants etc in the palace but those people carry on with 'tradition' because they're paid to and they choose to, not because they feel they have to or the royals are their betters.

Losing the monarchy doesn't mean people will have any more choice.

Jakeev
Jun 23rd, 2005, 11:07 PM
I think, at least in general, the honours are picked out via the government, or some body advising the government...the royal bit of the sytem is really just window dressing, you could certainly have some way of honouring citizens without having the royal dimension.

I think I read Tony Blair does much of it. But again as much as I agree, it still seems that many of these people are very honored to be chosen.

However, I have read that hundreds of personalities have turned the honors down in the past like Vanessa Redgrave, David Bowie and Jennifer Saunders.

Evidentally, politics do have something to do with why people turn down the honors. I read how Helen Mirren turned down a CBE under John Majors but decided to become a Dame under Blair.

CondiLicious
Jun 23rd, 2005, 11:13 PM
Who looks less and less like Charles every day :tape:.

... and more and more like James Hewitt every day...

Dava
Jun 23rd, 2005, 11:57 PM
Yes and No, just like if you were to ask me if we need the House of Lords.

I mean in a perfect world No, they are a waste of time and money even that little 7p or whatever it is they apprently cost us. Its a dated conept to make us all andwerable tot the queen/king.

However they are so intergrated into our constitution that it would take a huge upheavel of what is already probably the most dated and disorganized constitution in the world (its not even 'written' just spread over many reforms and acts) that they probably wouldnt dissappear over night, it woudl take years and years and years, wasting a lot of tax payers money to replace their 'functions' in the running of the UK.

Kart
Jun 24th, 2005, 01:03 AM
... and more and more like James Hewitt every day...

... and you prefer him ? :p

CondiLicious
Jun 24th, 2005, 01:42 AM
... and you prefer him ? :p

:lol: Harry is better looking than his brother. And well... James must have some good qualities otherwise Diana wouldn't have gone near him. :confused:

She was a bit mad though, wasn't she? :lol:

Martian Willow
Jun 24th, 2005, 02:15 AM
The Royal Family are not a tourist attraction as far as I am aware. You can't go and see them. You can go and see some of the buildings they own, but nobody is suggesting they be demolished.

Andy T
Jun 24th, 2005, 07:41 AM
I have mixed feelings about this. Just by the by, you have to be careful reading the press on this subject as Murdoch's papers are anti-Monarchy (and anti-EU) and are always trying to snipe at those institutions.

On the level, I think the argument is about the cost of a Head of State, whether it's a Queen or a President. Queen or no Queen, the palaces (and their contents) would still have to be maintained and the ceremonial/professional duties of the Head of State would still go on. The difference is that with the royals you other family members involved and not just the President (and spouse). More people means greater cost but also the capacity to do more work.

Comparing the UK to France, it seems to me that on balance a monarchy is ok - PROVIDED the monarch has no power.

The French President behaves almost like an elected King, trying to embody "La Gloire de la France". As we've seen with Chirac following the referendum result, because he is a political figure, the president cannot keep the respect/support of the people when he screws up. In contrast, regardless of whether Brits love or hate Blair, there's always someone else who actually represents the state.

Of course, in some countries like Germany or Ireland, the president is largely ceremonial and it'd be interesting to hear what people in that kind of system think about it.

Come-on-kim
Jun 24th, 2005, 08:13 AM
I don't know if Britain needs it but I am pro-monarchies. (Well, why being against, that's what I mean)

I am not sure but I think, I've read some years ago that the French Presidency cost more than the Belgian Royal Family. So, the economical point was not really relevant

-Kieron-
Jun 24th, 2005, 08:29 AM
He even has a bald patch like his dad now :lol:

I prefer Harry.

Me too. ;) Tho not sure about ur James Hewitt comments :tape: :lol:

Barrie_Dude
Jun 24th, 2005, 04:26 PM
Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth is also Queen of Canada

DevilishAttitude
Jun 24th, 2005, 04:35 PM
Of course we fucking don't :) We need those fucking snobs outta here :D

I prefer Harry over William. Harry is *normal* for a royal. I mean punching journalists coausing conterversy ;) William comes across to me as snide and smug.

Oh those bloody people :rolleyes: :tape: