Not even the Queen can escape that yearly headache of filing her tax returns – but how much does the Royal Family cost the UK?
Well, in business terms, she’s actually a net contributor. It’s been a good 12 months for the Royal household, but with a Government review of her ‘salary’ – the Sovereign Grant – planned for later this year, HRH could end up being a victim of her own success.
“The Queen, The Royal Family and the Household continue to provide excellent value for money: at 56p per person annually…”
Sir Alan Reid, Keeper of the Privy Purse
Her annual financial statement, The Sovereign Grant Report 2015-16, released today, revealed that The Crown Estate generated £304.1m in income, up 4.5% year-on-year and an increase of more than a quarter (27%) compared to five years ago. However, costs were also up, with expenditure rising 11% to £39.8m – which works out at a cost of just over 1p per week for every person living in the UK.
The Sovereign Grant is calculated as 15% of the Crown Estate’s profits contributed to the Treasury. Last year it was a record £40.1m (calculated from the Crown Estate’s £267m net profit in 2013-14) although Her Majesty did underspend by £300,000.
The total grant figure will be set to rise again to £42m next year, however the grant’s five-year review is due this autumn, when the Government and Royal officials may agree to cut it in percentage terms given the Estate’s strong performance of recent years.
Where does The Queen’s money go?
In 2015/16, the expenditure was reported as going on:
Payroll costs (36.31%)
Other staff costs (2.61%)
Property maintenance (30.35%)
The following chart shows royal expenditure, Crown Estate income and the Sovereign Grant allocation from 2011-2016:
Risers and fallers in The Royal Household
The following areas showed significant variation between 2014/15 to 2015/16 in the royal expenditure:
Travel costs fell by more than £1m to £4m – a 21% year-on-year reduction
Greenhouse gas emissions were down 9%
Property maintenance costs were up by £4.6m to more than £16m
How much money does The Queen contribute to the UK economy?
The Crown Estate makes its money through a combination of managed investments, developments, assets and property. Over the past decade, the Crown Estate generated more than £2.4bn for the UK economy.
The Crown Estate is a business in its own right, judged on the profit and investment it makes. Their business model centres on four key areas:
The Crown buys and sells property and other investments such as art collections and manages those investments to be profitable. The Central London and regional portfolio, predominantly made up of all Regent Street and most of St James’, currently generates £277.7 million in profit. The rural and coastal portfolio generated £49.5 million last year.
The Crown invests in its assets to make them more valuable and potentially profitable. This has financial benefits as well as meaning the Crown is contributing to the development of urban areas, planning, constructing and refreshing its assets. In the coming financial year, the Crown will invest £1.5 billion into its Central London portfolio.
The Crown Estate is an asset manager, which manages its own assets to maximise their value.
The Crown manages the properties it owns to add value to tenants, visitors and the community.
What could £40.1m buy you?
HRH had £40,000,000 to spend this year. We explored what she could have chosen…
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