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Author Topic: British Royal Finances  (Read 53444 times)
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Rebecca
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« Reply #380 on: November 29, 2015, 09:06:42 pm »

^If I were a British citizen, my argument to my MP wouldn't be how the monarchy is funded but why is it funded. Just because something goes back to the Middle Ages doesn't make it a good thing.....
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marion
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« Reply #381 on: November 29, 2015, 11:28:51 pm »

@My2Pence...if Charles wants legal ownership then fine let him have it as he would then have to pay for all the upkeep, repairs etc. I doubt it will ever happen though.
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My2Pence
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« Reply #382 on: November 30, 2015, 04:42:54 pm »

There does not need to be both a president and a prime minister. Why is that always the argument that comes out? That if the monarch is eliminated, all costs will skyrocket? 

The historic buildings could be transitioned into something else, to be OF USE to the people instead of just this handful.

IF a monarchy is maintained, it does NOT need to be maintained at this ridiculous level of funding. They've gotten away with far too much for far too long. A big push back came after the Windsor fire, and there will be more.

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meememe
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« Reply #383 on: November 30, 2015, 10:59:35 pm »

^If I were a British citizen, my argument to my MP wouldn't be how the monarchy is funded but why is it funded. Just because something goes back to the Middle Ages doesn't make it a good thing.....


Why is it funded?

To pay for the official duties - simple.

No SG = no official duties including no State Visits, no Trooping the Colour, no State Opening of Parliament, no Investitures, no Garden Parties, no myriad of other events. The money for these events has to come from somewhere and it is normal for a country to pay for the official work of their head of state whether that Head of State is political or ceremonial.
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Rosella
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« Reply #384 on: December 01, 2015, 01:22:00 am »

^ The vast majority of republics in the West have both a President and a Prime Minister, unless Britain is going to have an American-style Parliamentary system, in which case its Westminster-style government would also be swept away. Hardly likely, I think. Presidents plus Prime Ministers are certainly the norm in Europe, and the expenses for having ANY head of State are substantial. Anyway, talk of a republic in England is academic.

 The costs of 'transitioning' buildings like Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace would be mind blowing, and because they are historic dwellings it's likely they would be museums anyway. Establishing a non-revolutionary republic doesn't mean ancient buildings' Heritage listing and status would be swept away and they could be converted to anything the new owners desired.
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Kuei Fei
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« Reply #385 on: December 04, 2015, 05:14:36 am »

If I were in charge, I would turn Buck House into a large housing complex for diplomats, a vast large series of embassies. The reception rooms are still there and could be easily used and the cost of changing things could be sustained by the governments of each representative diplomat. It would be the perfect secure place and the palace would get used a lot more effectively and I am sure there would be a lot of appreciation from the diplomats. It could also be used for heads of state when they visit, allowing them to stay in a safe place and near their ambassadors. The BRF don't need that huge cavernous place. They have vast estates and houses on them, so no major need for so much land.

There does not need to be both a president and a prime minister. Why is that always the argument that comes out? That if the monarch is eliminated, all costs will skyrocket? 

IF a monarchy is maintained, it does NOT need to be maintained at this ridiculous level of funding. They've gotten away with far too much for far too long. A big push back came after the Windsor fire, and there will be more.

Exactly; WK use money to revamp a place that isn't really used anymore and there is no reason that they need such VAST sums of money for simple appearances. No need for couture for basic tours and no need to really pay in spades for going out on a half hour appearance. If the monarchy isn't streamlined (not cutting the perks and wages of staff, but actually taking more away from the RF) then things will even out. If a royal doesn't do appearances, no large budget for clothes or staff or a redecoration. Let it come out of their personal finances, not even more public money. If I had my way, I would order a full investigation and audit of the RF finances and find out where the money is going and what it's being saved up for (if at all).
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Rosella
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« Reply #386 on: December 04, 2015, 05:48:36 am »

^ It's already been explained in previous posts  that the expenditure for both Duchies and al. other monies the Royals receive are presented to Parliament each year, in report form, and are fully audited. They are fully audited by an independent auditor.

Every major country in Europe and indeed from all over the world, including the US, have their own large embassies and High Commissions in London already. I know from personal experience that Australia House is very large as is Canada House. Most embassies such as the French and US are huge. I don't think that a few rooms in BP per country would cut it really! Why would ambassadors, High Commissioners and staff want to move from roomy locations  to cramped quarters at BP? The security risks of having so many embassies together in one building would also be an absolute nightmare.

Royal visitors to London do often sleep in BP anyway on State visits to London. They also stay at Windsor. The Queen does sometimes wear couture gowns for the evening. However, the Queen's Royal engagements continue in the hundreds annually even though she is nearly ninety and many of her outfits are made for her by her dresser, Angela Kelly.

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Rosella
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« Reply #387 on: December 04, 2015, 06:08:36 am »

 ^^ Australia House, just one High Commission (Commonwealth country's) of the major buildings in London representing Commonwealth countries, is on the Strand and is Heritage listed. How many rooms do you think this one building's officials and staff would need at Buckingham Palace?

https://sourceable.net/australia-house-london-heritage-list/#
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Rosella
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« Reply #388 on: December 04, 2015, 06:32:39 am »

^ This is the Danish (and Finnish) Embassy, one of the smaller embassies in London, all four floors of it.

http://www.galinsky.com/buildings/danishembassy
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meememe
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« Reply #389 on: December 04, 2015, 07:11:06 am »

The major problem with that idea is who would actually own the property as Embassies and High Commissions are actually the property and part of the country they are representing i.e. the Australian High Commission is actually part of Australia and not the UK (the reverse is also true - the British High Commission in Canberra is UK soil and not Australia)

So in one building there would be multiple national owners and national laws in place - not to mention national military forces and other national security forces.

There was a suggestion some years ago now about the US buying KP as its Embassy. The Queen refused to allow it to be sold to the US but is was seen as the right size for the US Embassy and able to be secured by US Marines (once inside the doors/gates of the embassy it is the job of that nation to provide protection and not the local force who provide protection outside only).

BP isn't just a home. It is the centre of the royal family's operations and many, many engagements are carried out there by numerous royals throughout the year. There are occasions when there are two or three events taking place at the same time in different parts of the palace.

It is also the London home for Andrew and Edward - not just The Queen.

It is also the place of operation for the entire office of the Head of State. There are literally 100s of people who are employed there. Move the royal family out and many of them would be unemployed.

It is where the carriage and horses are kept for the official occasions. etc etc etc etc
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marion
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« Reply #390 on: December 04, 2015, 01:17:49 pm »

@KF "If I were in charge, I would turn Buck House....."

Good idea - Charles has already said he won't use BH except for state events and intends to base himself at Windsor.  Might be nice though if he waited for his mother to die before he makes his plans public; ER looks a lot healthier than he does so you never know, she might outlive him. 
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Rosella
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« Reply #391 on: December 04, 2015, 02:11:58 pm »

^ Charles has never spoken about not living in BP when he's King, I believe. I have read that he's very comfortable at Clarence House. According to Richard Palmer's Twitter Page today Richard says that he's always been assured that it's not true that Charles doesn't want to live at Buckingham Palace.
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marion
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« Reply #392 on: December 04, 2015, 03:52:14 pm »

^https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=5&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiljJvwxsLJAhXFjg8KHfLiAdAQFgg1MAQ&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.telegraph.co.uk%2Fnews%2Fuknews%2Ftheroyalfamily%2F8844432%2FBuckingham-Palace-could-be-turned-into-museum-when-Prince-Charles-becomes-king.html&usg=AFQjCNFUw22bYvtlHiv1jtlJgTxQhggkDg
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gingerboy24
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« Reply #393 on: December 04, 2015, 08:29:55 pm »

I remember him saying that back in 2011  -  thought it a strange thing to say, but then he is one strange chap from start to finish.  Maybe he wants more income to fund his lifestyle, he could earn quite a bit each year on entrance fees for people to visit BP.
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meememe
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« Reply #394 on: December 04, 2015, 09:27:49 pm »

Entrance Fees for the occupied royal palaces go to the Historic Palaces Trust not to the BRF. That is the organisation who runs the palaces and maintains them so if Charles did open BP year round he wouldn't benefit financially at all - but would have to overload St James, KP and Windsor (probably closing those later two more often for official duties to be undertaken there anyway).
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Kuei Fei
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« Reply #395 on: December 05, 2015, 01:10:33 am »

If the BRF have Duchies and income from that, why are the palaces such a mess? That it what I don't get; HM reaches into the poverty fund and pays the staff diddly, cries pooor, while her family indulges in a lifestyle like that of celebrities. Why is Buck House crumbling so badly if money is coming in from entrance fees from tours and of course, the duchies themselves generate vast sums. The Duchy of Cornwall is something that brings in millions a year and of course, HM has her private monies as well. That is the inconsistency I'm intrigued by. If a President had such issues, the countyr would be all over it. As it is, the citizenry in the US are up in arms over Obama's family taking yet more vacations and naturally UK taxpayers are paying for WK renovations and yet, HM is supposedly loaded. The issue to me is where does private begin/end and where does being a public figure begin/end with the BRF. There's no clear line.

With the money the Lancaster and Cornwall duchies bring in, the palaces should be in top form and have brand spanking new features and of course, be open for tours and well decorated. Not falling to pieces in a way that almost got Princess Anne killed by falling debris. A new restructuring would be insanely expensive, but that is what the income is for and second, it would provide huge work to British workers who would gladly work on this in exchange for vast sums of money infused into their businesses. If HM can afford to replace Windsor castle at her own expense, then she should be using the money she's granted by Parliament on ongoing repairs. She's not poor and never will be, not by a long shot. She should be ponying up. As for the rest of the RF, it's tiring hearing about how they keep insisting that being royal doesn't help them, it does. How many would move so quickly as champ equestrians if they didn't have the Queen's best horses and money to burn paying for upkeep and of course, paying for the world's best trainers to train them.

One of the good things Blair did is get rid of the royal yacht and other various perks cut. The BRF keeps wanting to live like the sheiks of the MIddle East, but unlike the BRF, the sheiks run the country and work 24/7 all the time. They EARN their large yachts and parties and massive sums of jewels. If I had my way, I would be asking the BRF why it is that the Queen wanted to dip into the poverty fund and why HM is having issues installing a better heating system in the rooms that are used by the BRF. Or why the staff are paid so little and not really well looked after while being hamstrung by zero-hour contracts. The kind of penny pinching that the BRF does is mind-blowing. Enough for renovations and a decadent lifestyle, but nothing in terms of keeping the palaces updated or in good form, but enough to blow taxpayer money on renovations foir the Cambs and a luxury lifestyle for the Yorkies and Camilla./her family.

They have no right to leech like this and sit on a mountain of cash gained from being royal. I dislike how HM is double dipping. If anyone pulled that while on welfare, they would be prosecuted, kicked off the dole, and made to pay back the money they cheated/ lived off of. As for ambassadors living in Bucking ham Palace, I am well aware that each embassy area is considered sovereign territory of the nation they represent. I just think it would solve a lot of issues and free up a lot of prime real estate in London. As for royals living there, Queen Victoria didn't have problems living there. If royals had to live there and basically required to give up various houses it would solve more issues as well. Just think of all of the space that could be freed up.

Frankly the way finances work needs an overhaul and spending should be streamlined and not in the hands of the Queen. She prefers to cut employee perks instead of trimming her own family's extravagances. If I were PM, I would set up an organization to become fully informed of where the money is going and I would then require a report on which areas need to be cut. IF HM paid the RF less for parties and jet setting, I am certain that the wages and benefits of her employees would increase and their employees would get better pay for all those hours of work they put in. Just think, an employee would get a good paycheck and benefits and HM would be able to afford to pay them well, better since they do so freaking much for that family and household. one of the good things Blair did was get rid of the yacht and unburden the taxpayers from being forced to finance that.
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Rosella
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« Reply #396 on: December 05, 2015, 02:10:06 am »

^^ Foreign Embassies crammed together in one building, Buckingham Palace, just wouldn't work, space-wise, security-wise and in several other ways that have been pointed to in previous posts. Foreign and Commonwealth governments just would not agree to that proposal.

In 2000 the Prime Minister froze any increase in the Civil List, (forerunner of the Sovereign Grant) for ten years. During that time, because funding was tight, essential repairs to royal palaces were put off. Deterioration occurred during that time. When the Sovereign Grant began some repairs commenced but everything that deteriorated over a decade as well as maintenance problems that were already waiting cannot be suddenly repaired and maintained in a five year period.


The Queen doesn't administer her source of  income from the Duchy of Lancaster any more than Charles does the Duchy of Cornwall money, though Charles is far more pro-active in the administration. In both cases others administer the Duchies.

KF, you stated in your post that Queen Victoria didn't mind living in Buckingham Palace. That just isn't so. She and Prince Albert complained incessantly about the drains, the cold and the inconvenience of the place in bringing up a young family. As a widow she was barely at BP, ever. It was Osborne House on the Isle of Wight during the Spring, early summer and sometimes at Christmas, Balmoral in the late summer and autumn and Windsor the rest of the time. She complained in her old age if she had to go to BP and greet foreign monarchs in London on official visits.

Balmoral and Sandringham are private residences, estates, bought over 150 years ago in both cases. The maintenance for them comes out of the Queen's Duchy of Lancaster money. Why should she have to sell private property that are old family homes?
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gingerboy24
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« Reply #397 on: January 10, 2016, 03:57:37 pm »

Interesting about how much the queen is worth.  And she still wants to grab more.  Greedy in my view.

An article in Fortune Magazine's archive of Billionaires 1991 listed QUEEN ELIZABETH II, as 7th. The queen then 65 as owning $10.7 270,000 acres of agricultural land; premier London real estate; vast stock portfolio; art; jewellery; stamps; porcelain; furniture; racehorses.
It also noted Elizabeth II disclosed the previous fall that the royal family spends $105,169 a year on laundry and $62,656 on flowers. bet that was payed for by tax payers. That was 1991 what's the laundry and flowers costing in 2016 huh?
2012 Forbes Magazine called into question her worth, claiming it to be as much as 44 Billion.

http://archive.fortune.com/…/for…/1991/09/09/75462/index.htm
http://www.forbes.com/…/queen-elizabeth-ii-is-worth-44-bil…/
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Val
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« Reply #398 on: January 10, 2016, 04:43:32 pm »

^

Allegedly Ma has mentally already spent it on tacky alterations to the palaces (once she gets her hands on it via Willy) according to those in the know.
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Kuei Fei
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« Reply #399 on: January 10, 2016, 05:16:08 pm »

Interesting about how much the queen is worth.  And she still wants to grab more.  Greedy in my view.

An article in Fortune Magazine's archive of Billionaires 1991 listed QUEEN ELIZABETH II, as 7th. The queen then 65 as owning $10.7 270,000 acres of agricultural land; premier London real estate; vast stock portfolio; art; jewellery; stamps; porcelain; furniture; racehorses.
It also noted Elizabeth II disclosed the previous fall that the royal family spends $105,169 a year on laundry and $62,656 on flowers. bet that was payed for by tax payers. That was 1991 what's the laundry and flowers costing in 2016 huh?
2012 Forbes Magazine called into question her worth, claiming it to be as much as 44 Billion.
http://archive.fortune.com/…/for…/1991/09/09/75462/index.htm
http://www.forbes.com/…/queen-elizabeth-ii-is-worth-44-bil…/

With that much dough she should be able to pay staff better and of course, not ask for more. She could finance the restoration of Buck House and she could end up easily supporting household expenses like heat and other utility bills. I thought that was the whole point of her income.
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