The Story of the Cost of Frogmore Cottage Renovations.
£2.4 million has been spent renovating Frogmore Cottage, the new home for Prince Harry and Meghan.
News reports are saying that Prince Harry is to repay the taxpayer that £2.4 million.
That is wrong, he will not be paying it to the taxpayer. But he may be paying it to the Crown Estate, the owner of Frogmore Cottage and Prince Harry’s landlord. That money does not go to the taxpayer. The UK treasury (Tax Office) has already had 75% of the Crown Estate profits. That £2.4 million is from the Monarchy 15% share, as perpetual owner of the Crown Estate.
It does seem odd that the cost of renovations that were already earmarked for renovation, even before it was decided that Prince Harry and Meghan would move there, would become the responsibility of the new tenant. (Prince Harry and Meghan).
If this money had not been spent on Frogmore, it would have been spent on another property in need of repair.
Official Royal Statement re Frogmore Cottage
In early 2019, Sir Michael Stevens, keeper of the Privy Purse, who is responsible for monarchy’s accounts, said: “The property had not been the subject of work for some years and had already been earmarked for renovation in line with our responsibility to maintain the condition of the occupied royal palaces estate.” and “Outdated infrastructure was replaced to guarantee the long term future of the property.”
The 19th century Frogmore Cottage, in the grounds of the queen’s Windsor Castle estate, became the official residence of Harry and Meghan when they moved in shortly before the birth of their first child, (Archie was born on 6th May 2019).
The building had been previously converted into five separate residences and royal officials had already planned to renovate it before it was agreed that it would become the residence of Harry and Meghan.
The six-month refurbishment included new electrical wiring, replacement of defective ceiling beams and floor joists, new heating systems and the introduction of new gas and water mains.
Royal Finances Report re Frogmore Cottage
Information from The Royal Finances Report 2018-19.
The latest Condition Assessment survey of the Occupied Royal Palaces Estate highlighted that 50% of the Estate was below target condition at 31 December 2017. (This included Frogmore Cottage)
Changes in the condition of the Estate will continue to be monitored through the regular condition assessment surveys. It is expected that any decline in condition will begin to reverse in the next four years due to the continued investment from the Sovereign Grant.
Expenditure on property maintenance from the Core Sovereign Grant (including property capital expenditure) was £25.1 million in 2018-19.
In 2018-19 a total of 176 (2017-18: 188) projects over £6,000 in value were carried out across the Estate.
Frogmore Cottage, Windsor (£2.4m)
The scheme consisted of the reconfiguration and full refurbishment of five residential units in poor condition to create the official residence for The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their family. The works started on-site in November 2018 and were substantially completed by the end of March 2019.
Frogmore Cottage Bottom Line:
- In 2017 it was seen that Frogmore Cottage needed renovations.
- In 2018 £2.4 million was allocated for those renovations, from the £25.1 million already set aside for Royal Estate Capital works, (from 15% of the Crown Estate Profits, not the 75% that the Taxpayer gets).
- In 2019 Prince Harry and Meghan moved in, after personally paying for fixtures and furnishings.
- In 2020 It is estimated that Prince Harry and Meghan will pay between £100,000 to £360,000 per year in rent for this newly renovated property. (The current market value, after costs of renovations, depending on which news reports to believe)
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