Saturday 25 March 2017

Taxpayers in UK coughing up more to support Charles

Jonathan Brown in London

WHILE the rest of austerity Britain may be learning to live with swingeing spending cuts, it emerged yesterday that one national institution enjoyed an impressive 18pc boost in the support it received from the public coffers last year.

The amount of taxpayers' money used to subsidise the activities of Prince Charles and his household rose to £1.96m (€2.18m) from £1.66m (€1.84m) over the previous 12 months. This included a 40pc rise in government grants to run Charles and Camilla's London residence and to fund the couple's overseas travels.

As well as receiving increased state support, the prince also saw his private income from the 133,700-acre Duchy of Cornwall -- given to him as heir to the throne and which also includes a lucrative investment portfolio -- rise by 4pc to nearly £17.8m (€19.8m)

In a year which has seen the royal family ride a wave of popular approval after the widely celebrated wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, anti-monarchy groups severely criticised the level of spending revealed in the annual financial review. But the report sought to emphasise the prince's philanthropic work and green credentials. As well as voluntarily paying nearly £5m (€5.5m) in tax, it revealed his 20 core charities had raised £123m (€136m).

However, the accounts revealed signs of a slackening in fiscal discipline. The prince's non-official expenditure rose 50pc, to £2.5m (€2.7m), partly to cover the royal wedding, although the bulk of that outlay is not included in this year's figures. (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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