Buckingham Palace being refurbished with £369 from the British taxpayer


The Queen is due have the builders in with a renovation set to cost a mammoth £369 million over the next decade.
The public purse will meet the cost of the refurbishment, which is the biggest work at Buckingham Palace since before World War Two. Cash will come from the Sovereign Grant, which is a sum paid by the Government to the Queen each year.
This year, the money was £42 million and a third of that money is put aside into a pot to maintain the Royal palaces. The palaces are seen as vital not just as the royals’ homes, but for British tourism.
However, the Sovereign Grant will not be enough to cover the extent of the works, which are seen as being long overdue. A total of another 66 per cent will need to be added to the pot to pay for the work needed.
The last renovations and refurbishment to take place at the Palace were as a result of damage caused during Second World War bombing raids.
A total of ten miles of water pipes, 6,500 plug sockets and 500 new pieces of sanitaryware including toilets, along with 20 miles of skirting board will be replaced or added.
Restoration experts said it was vital that the work was carried out now in order to secure priceless works of art against the risk of damage.
At 90 years old, it is perhaps understandable that the Queen does not want to go through the trauma of moving out. Instead, she will stay and simply put up with the building work.
It is, however, likely that she will need to move bedrooms at some point so that work can be carried out in her room.
She is said to be fully supportive of the refurbishment work because she knows that it is vital in order to secure the structure of the building and to make sure that the priceless works of art it houses are safe.
Meanwhile, Portacabins are set to spring up on the palace lawn for staff displaced by the works.
While the Queen currently has 15 per cent of the profits from the Crown Estate, this will increase to 25 per cent until the work is finished. When the work is finished in 2027, the amount received will return to the original 15 per cent.