The Cost of Royalty: Evaluating Public Spending on the Royal Family

…By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media. Is the Royal Family Worth the Cost? A Polarizing Question in the UK


The value of the Royal Family in relation to taxpayer money is a subject that elicits divergent opinions throughout the United Kingdom.

Official figures released today indicate that over £86 million of taxpayers’ funds were allocated to support the Royal Family’s formal duties, equivalent to £1.29 per person in the UK.

Nonetheless, critics contest this figure.


Renovations and Rising Expenses: Buckingham Palace is currently undergoing a significant 10-year renovation project aimed at modernizing its heating, plumbing, and electricity systems.

Consequently, the amount of taxpayers’ money allocated to the Royal Family increases by approximately 10% each year.

The Royal Household, like the general population, is not immune to the pressures of rising costs, leading to the necessity of dipping into reserve funds to sustain the institution.

To save expenses, King Charles even adjusted the thermostat, setting occupied rooms in Buckingham Palace to 19 degrees Celsius during the winter.

Payroll Costs and Public Perception: Despite granting his staff a pay rise of about 5-6%, King Charles faced criticism as payroll costs experienced one of the highest annual increases in expenditure during the 2022-23 period.


Public sector workers, who demand better pay and conditions, may view this favorably, perceiving the government as less caring than the Head of State.

Helicopter Expenditure and Environmental Concerns: The Royal Family has attracted criticism for spending over a million pounds on helicopter flights.

Detractors accuse the institution of hypocrisy, citing the contradiction between the King’s environmental interests and the carbon emissions produced by the helicopters.

Palace sources argue that other modes of transportation would not be logistically feasible for the 2,700 official engagements across the country and overseas.

Some concessions have been made, such as Prince and Princess of Wales opting for commercial flights, and overall travel expenditure has decreased by approximately 13%.


Disputing Costs and Criticisms: Republic Chief Executive, Graham Smith, claims that the true cost of the monarchy is at least £345 million, which could have been used to employ thousands of nurses and teachers.

Smith argues that this figure, which includes costs to local councils, local police forces, the revenue of the Duchies, and security, is more accurate than the official report.

Consequently, the King and the Royal Family continue to face criticism for their spending.

Major Royal Events and Expenditure: The financial year 2022-23 was considered “unprecedented” for the Royal Family due to significant expenditures on major royal events.

The Platinum Jubilee and the late Queen’s funeral accounted for a combined £2.3 million from the Sovereign Grant funding.


The cost of the Coronation will be included in next year’s report.

Additionally, government departments may have allocated additional taxpayers’ money for these events.

Residence and Homelessness: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have vacated Frogmore Cottage after repaying £2.4 million of taxpayers’ money used for its refurbishment.

Speculation arises regarding the new tenants, as the King has reportedly been unsuccessful in persuading his brother, Prince Andrew, to downsize from Royal Lodge to Frogmore Cottage.

The existence of empty royal residences, including Frogmore Cottage, may be uncomfortable for Prince William, who recently launched a project to address homelessness.


Critics question his suitability to champion this cause while living in multiple properties himself.

Diversity and Inclusivity: Buckingham Palace falls short of its target of having 10% of its staff from ethnic minority backgrounds by the end of 2022, with the figure standing at 9.7%.

In contrast, Prince William and Princess Catherine’s household at Kensington Palace has achieved 16.3% diversity among its staff.

Considering that 18% of the UK population comes from ethnic minority backgrounds, Buckingham Palace has set a new target of 14% by 2025.

The push for increased diversity aims to demonstrate the institution’s relevance and reduce the risk of accusations of unconscious bias.


Perceptions of Value: Supporters of the monarchy argue that the institution brings substantial economic and cultural benefits to the UK, outweighing the costs incurred.

Opinion polls consistently indicate a majority of Britons supporting the Royal Family, suggesting a willingness to bear the associated expenses.

Nevertheless, convincing skeptics of the monarchy’s benefits remains a significant challenge, particularly as households continue to grapple with the rising cost of living.

Conclusion: The question of whether the Royal Family represents value for money sparks intense debate in the UK.

While official figures highlight the expenses borne by taxpayers, critics dispute the true costs.


The monarchy’s spending choices, such as helicopter flights, draw criticism, while attempts at financial restraint, like adjusting room temperatures, are seen as mere penny-pinching.

Furthermore, issues related to diversity and inclusivity, alongside perceptions of extravagance, contribute to the ongoing scrutiny of the monarchy’s worth.

Ultimately, the monarchy faces the challenge of persuading a skeptical public of its benefits amid ongoing economic challenges for the majority of households.


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