A preliminary report on the state of the Queen’s London residence shows repairs and renovations costing up to £150 million will be needed as part of a 10-year maintenance plan
The figure was included in the latest annual report on the Royal Family’s finances which revealed the Queen received a Sovereign Grant of £37.9 million from the Crown Estate in 2014-15, £2.2 million more from the previous year.
Details of the Buckingham Palace proposals were absent from the document, however a commentary from Keeper of the Privy Purse Alan Reid hinted that necessary renovation work at the palace would ‘present a significant financial challenge’ in the coming years.
A palace spokeswoman told AJ that a figure of £150 million had been identified by property specialists as a realistic estimate for work required on the Grade I listed building as part of the 10-year plan.
‘My understanding is that the next stage is for an outside consultant to undertake an options review similar to what’s happened with the Houses of Parliament,’ she said.
‘Some parts of Buckingham Palace have not been touched since they were built. None of the principal rooms have been redecorated since 1949.’
She insisted that reports that the Queen may move out of the palace for the building to undergo a period of intensive refurbishment were ‘speculation’, but said that a wing-by-wing approach could be taken to some of the work.
The spokeswoman would not give a breakdown of work proposed as part of the £150 million estimate. It was suggested that architects had not been appointed.
The core of Buckingham Palace was built as a private residence in the 18th Century before expanded by John Nash and Edward Blore in the 19th Century, with further additions – including its famous balcony – made subsequently.