Today, the Duchy of Cornwall owns the landmark cricket ground known as The Oval, lush farmland in the south of England, seaside vacation rentals, office space in London and a suburban supermarket depot. (A duchy is a territory traditionally governed by a duke or duchess.) The 130,000-acre real estate portfolio is nearly the size of Chicago and generates millions of dollars a year in rental income.
The conglomerate’s holdings are valued at roughly $1.4 billion, compared with around $949 million in the late queen’s private portfolio. These two estates represent a small fraction of the royal family’s estimated $28 billion fortune. On top of that, the family has personal wealth that remains a closely guarded secret.
As king, Charles will take over his mother’s portfolio and inherit a share of this untold personal fortune. While British citizens normally pay around 40 percent inheritance tax, King Charles gets this tax free. And he will pass control of his duchy to his elder son, William, to develop further without having to pay corporate taxes.
The growth in the royal family’s coffers and King Charles’s personal wealth over the past decade came at a time when Britain faced deep austerity budget cuts. Poverty levels soared, and the use of food banks almost doubled. His lifestyle of palaces and polo has long fueled accusations that he is out of touch with ordinary people. And he has at times been the unwitting symbol of that disconnect — such as when his limo was mobbed by students protesting rising tuition in 2010 or when he perched atop a golden throne in his royal finery this year to pledge help for struggling families.
“King Charles is not a housing association for distant relatives”
And so it begins…the changes to course correct a bloated operation. Ready for the KC3 haters who were calling him weak the other day to start calling him cruel 🍿
The news came as the King’s visit to France was delayed after extensive rioting on Thursday night. Senior figures have told the Standard that after the period of transition following the coronation, the King, assisted by Queen Camilla, will move to tackle inefficiencies in what is being viewed as a largely overstaffed and outdated system.
Vice-Admiral Sir Tony Johnstone-Burt, Master of the Household, and the Keeper of the Privy Purse Sir Michael Stevens, responsible for finance, will execute the shake-up of what is described as a “top-heavy royal household”. Camilla has been overseeing the fine detail of the King’s plan to ensure that after the coronation the royal household will be run the “Clarence House way”.
One senior figure said: “It is not about cuts, it is about getting the best value for money from those on the payroll. Sometimes less is more.”
Another source added: “The King is not some sort of housing association for distant relatives.” Harry and Meghan were given use of Frogmore Cottage, a five-bedroom mansion on the Windsor estate in 2018, by the late Queen.
However, the couple’s loss of the cottage, their only British home, is said to be just the “tip of the iceberg”.
It is understood Charles is keen to reduce the number of royals with a financial dependence on the crown, especially if they do not have an active role to play. He wants funds from the Duchy of Lancaster, the portfolio of land, property and assets held in trust for the King, and the sovereign grant that covers the cost of royal travel on official engagements, to be spent more effectively. He also wants to pay his staff competitive salaries and pensions so that he gets the best people for the jobs.
“There will be staff cutbacks. That has already started. The buzz phrase is ‘value for money,’” said the source.
Several members of the extended royal family have enjoyed subsidised palace accommodation, with some having apartments that are being used by their children as “London pads”.
The source said: “Over time, that is going to change. Properties will be let at commercial rates going forward and to people outside the family. Where it is in a palace environment they will of course be security vetted.”
Privately, the King’s senior staff have made it clear to members of the extended family that if they cannot afford where they are living, they should “cut their cloth”. “A lot of practices that have evolved during the last reign will be changing. The King is not heartless or reckless, but if the family members are not part of the core family and not working for the crown, it is fair for them to house themselves and fund themselves,” a senior figure said.
One insider said: “The staffing has been on the top-heavy side. That has built up over time, with advisers to advisers and so on. That’s all going to stop. The boss wants effective people in effective positions doing effective jobs being paid appropriately.” The senior source added: “Much of what was in place doesn’t make economic sense and will be changed during the new reign.”
Yup. This is about what I expected.
People forget that Charles turned the Duchy of Cornwall into the behemoth it is now. It was struggling and in debt when he took it over from his mother.
This is good stuff. We should also take "the duchy" back.
Fuck the king.
Filthy Monarchy: What’s Behind King Charles’s Bumper Pay Rise? Greed, Lies and a Ton of Public Money
The crown estate no more belongs to the monarch than No 10 does to Rishi Sunak. So why such a huge handout?
— Graham Smith | Saturday 22 July 2023
There have been growing calls for an end to royal secrecy in recent months, with historians, campaigners and journalists demanding greater access to the official records of the UK’s head of state. That secrecy has been compared unfavourably to MI5, with the royals having an absolute exemption from the Freedom of Information Act while squirrelling away thousands of official records in their archives in Windsor.
There is a reason why the monarchy is more secretive than our security services: it has plenty to hide. It is not unreasonable to conclude that the institution is corrupt, if corruption is the abuse of public office for personal gain. Whether it’s using tens of millions of pounds each year to cover costs such as travel or palatial homes, or lobbying the government in pursuit of their private interests or political agendas, the royals exploit their status and position week in, week out.
To the list of charges we can also add breathtaking dishonesty. In collusion with the palace, the government announced on Thursday that there would be a change in the calculation for determining the size of the sovereign grant, the official funding for the royal household. In a bit of spin that would put Malcolm Tucker to shame, it issued a statement that gave the very strong impression that the grant itself would be cut, while the truth is that it will probably go up by 45%, or nearly £40m, in 2025.
It said that the sovereign grant would “be 12% of the crown estate’s net profits next year, down from 25%”, and that “as a result, the royal household’s budget will be £24m lower next year and £130m lower in both 2025 and 2026, than if the rate remained at 25%”. That suggested cut, which was nothing of the sort, became the initial headline of the story. Further down the statement, the government explained that “the total sovereign grant for 2024/25 will remain flat at £86.3m”. So no cut at all. Nowhere in the government’s statement did it explain that in fact, set at the equivalent 12% of crown estate profits, the grant would jump from £86m next year to £126m in 2026.
This barefaced dishonesty from the palace and government is nothing new. They continue to imply that the sovereign grant is some kind of exchange for the revenues from the crown estate, giving the impression that the estate’s profits are the king’s to give to the nation. The palace issued a statement in the run-up to the coronation, saying that King Charles wanted to ensure that the profits of the crown estate were used for the “public good”, again giving the impression those profits were generously given to a country that should be grateful for his largesse, not concerned about his abuse of public funds. And this dishonesty of the palace is muddying the waters when it comes to discussions about the monarchy and, in particular, its funding.
The crown estate is not the personal property of Charles Mountbatten-Windsor. The crown estate says it is the property of the monarchy “by right of the crown”, but this jargon simply means it belongs to the crown, a state institution, not to Charles, a private individual. It is often commented on that, at the start of their reign, the new monarch surrenders the crown estate revenue in exchange for government funding, as Charles did at the accession council shortly after his mother’s death last September. Yet this is pure theatre. He has no more claim to own the crown estate than Rishi Sunak has to own the flat above 10 Downing Street.
The same is true of the Duchies of Lancaster and Cornwall. The palace claims these are “private estates”, when they are crown properties that originate from the same crown lands as the crown estate. This point about the status of crown lands has been well documented over the past 200 years, not least in parliamentary debates going back to the time of Edward VII and Victoria. As recently as 1972 there were questions raised in parliament as to whether these portfolios should continue to provide an income to the monarch and heir. Spencer Walpole, a 19th-century historian and politician, argued very clearly that the “surrender” of the crown estate was irreversible, while the professor Edward Freeman, writing during Victoria’s reign, said the surrender was “a custom as strong as law”.
The truth is that the monarchy is deceiving the public about its income, funding and wealth. The crown estate does not belong to the royal family, and it doesn’t provide the funding for the monarchy. It has only been since 2011 that the size of the grant is pegged to the estate’s profits. Yet for all the sense that makes you could just as easily peg the grant to the profits of McDonald’s or easyJet. The funding will still come from the government – a government that insists it can’t provide cost-of-living wage increases for nurses or crucial support for families with more than two children. The sovereign grant doesn’t cover the full cost of the monarchy, with estimates by Republic putting the total bill at more than £345m. Yet that figure will continue to rise for as long as the secrecy and dishonesty persists. And that should be a source of deep shame for all those involved, not least King Charles.
— Graham Smith is CEO of Republic and the author of Abolish the Monarchy: Why We Should and How We Will
so say you have a best friend. are you a 'spend a lifetime at his side and then after death condemn him to the possibility of eternal existence because you can't stand the idea of spending your own eternity without him at all even when your paths may only cross once every century and the occasional phone call' kinda guy or are you like. normal about him.
Beatrice, Mistress of Castle Troia
(this was inevitable ever since @yloiseconeillants pointed out that her portrait looks like a midway between Aryaille and Ares )
So last year I asked WHEN WILL THE QUEEN DIE? I asked again later this year when it looked like she was on the slide.
I literally got over 100 dates via the threads and in PMs so thank you to everyone that took part
I spent this week trawling through them. No one guessed exactly right so I've gone with the nearest, and that was...
You were 4 days out mate which is pretty fucking good! So you win the fiver. Congratulations and god kill the king!
ik snapchats facial changes suck rly bad but i remain unimmune to elf propaganda
Queen Elizabeth is well known as one of the largest landowners in the world. Less well known is that her holdings include most of the seabed encircling the United Kingdom, out to 12 nautical miles from shore.
That eye-popping detail of monarchal history is being seen in a new light as Britain’s declining biodiversity gains attention and the royal family has been urged to take on greater leadership in restoring nature—starting with the properties they control.
Yet lately efforts to restore coastal waters have encountered obstacles unique to this monarchy—ones that have chased a kelp farmer to a more welcoming reception in southeast Asia, for example, and that threaten to derail the largest effort to replant seagrass ever undertaken in Britain.
The U.K. is in no position to lose such opportunities, advocates say. Nearly half of the country’s wildlife and plant species have been lost since the Industrial Revolution, according to a biodiversity monitoring initiative launched last year by London’s Natural History Museum. Britain now ranks in the bottom 10 percent of the world and as the worst among G-7 nations.
When seagrass and kelp thrive, they protect against coastal erosion, serve as nurseries to coastal marine life, and absorb copious amounts of carbon. But gaining permission to restore those ecosystems requires a lease, with fees paid to the Crown Estate—the commercial real estate company that manages properties owned by the monarch.
With the new reporting in the Daily Mail that BP struck a deal with H&M that they didn’t pay rent in exchange for paying back the cost of renovations.
The top comment blames KC3 for this!
Are people really this stupid and blind? The person that deal with struck under was QE2 and she allowed them to renew their lease last year. Where are the comments calling her weak and spineless? Instead it’s all conveniently blamed on Charles who has actually kicked them out!!!
No, I am not surprised.
Yes, people really are that stupid and blind.
Most people just want to scapegoat their angry emotions about this and can't think rationally.
I suspect that Charles & his team were the ones who leaked/supplied Kate Mansey with this info for her story this past weekend. It fits into where Charles will be taking things with the crown estate in the future.
Everyone complaining doesn't seem to realize that Charles has no problem sidelining those he wants to sideline. Charles sidelined Anne, Andrew, and Edward from the Diamond Jubilee balcony back in 2012 when all three were working royals.
I've seen people freaking out about Trooping the Colour and balcony appearances for both the coronation and TTC. No one who is not a "working royal" right now will be on the balcony or in a carriage for either the coronation or Trooping the Color.
But, you know, certain people wouldn't have anything to write about if they didn't treat every news release as if it was DEFCON 2 level of tragedy.
Ngl working in land management where I am is making the pervasive impact of modern class influence a lot clearer. Land rights are an interesting one, but just in the immediate area there's 3 or more massive historical estates. (Crewe, Raby, and Beaumont) These estates are hundreds of years old, still holding power, and influence over the area. The area was built on the back of miners, quarrymen, and hillfarmers (and still is for the most part) and as such so was their fortune. Their power isn't quite as absolute as it used to be, but they're still powerful.
The Crewe estate includes a town called Blanchland. A small town, originally medieval, nowadays dating from the mid to late 1600s. The entire town is owned by the estate, and they strictly control the appearance of the place. You're not allowed TV satellites, and honestly I'm not sure what utilities are available. You don't own, you rent at their leisure.
The Raby estate still has rules based on the 1700s(?). In Teesdale, any house owned by the family needs to be whitewashed. Why you may ask? Lord Raby once fell off his horse while hunting and hurt himself. He went to a house for help, and the tennants rightfully told him to fuck off because he wasn't their lord. He then had all of his homes painted white so he would know which were his. Quaint, but for the wrong reasons perhaps. Again, those houses are rented at their leisure. You live by their rules.
The Beaumont estate I know less about. What I do know though is that their fortune was built on the back of miners, at a time when lead was pricey and the technology was minimal. Allendale no longer brings them riches so they neglect it. Its history neglected to ruin for the sake of senseless penny pinching, despite their funding and legal obligations of care.
All these estates are historic, and have a lasting legacy. They bleed you of your income. They burn the land for sport. And they poison the water with avoidable runoff. Feudalism never really died. Neo-Feudalism will continue as long as the crown and its titles exist.
(This of course isn't the full extent of their activities, just simple deets within maybe 20 square miles)
i spent way too much in game money on these, but they were so worth it. best house items in ESO. so shaped
a list of crimes bk moon has committed against me personally with the sequel in no particular order but you will Know which ones i feel more strongly about anyway:
javier smiling to himself and getting all nostalgic as he watches rakiel because he reminds him so very much of lloyd
like seriously this man cannot stop comparing the two of them and getting quietly happy because it brings back fond memories it is heartbreaking he literally has to remind himself to not get swept in sentimentality several times every time he talks with rakiel
and as if that wasn't enough damian and rakiel remind him so much of himself and lloyd that he ends up offering to help them without even thinking about it. like. he feels so identified with them, remembering how hard it had been for him and lloyd to go through that whole ordeal on their own that he just. tells them they have his support before he even realized what he's doing. he wasn't planning on doing that. good work on not getting sentimental babe.
when lloyd and javier are on a call planning how to defeat the demon king, despite the awful circumstances javier can't help but smile and then laugh at himself because no matter how terrible the situation is he still finds it enjoyable to prepare for something with lloyd like they used to do. "it was a feeling similar to a distant longing. or a joy that felt like going back to the past"
javier is pining so hard. like. it's insane.
AND HE JUST KEEPS SMILING SOFTLY WHENEVER HE GETS CONFIRMATION THAT LLOYD STILL HASN'T CHANGED HE'S STILL THE SAME PERSON JAVIER SPENT HIS LIFE WITH SOMEONE SEDATE ME
lloyd asking rakiel about javier. asking how he's doing. acting all nonchalant about it even kind of annoyed. and then once he's alone. sighing and then smiling faintly. "like the smile he used to smile at someone"
"'so you're doing well? i'm glad' a feeling that blooms for a moment. a memory that's suddenly missed."
i am. going to fucking explode.
and then. there's their actual face-to-face conversation. which. oh my god. i don't even know what to start with.
javier always saying "it's been a while lloyd-nim" no matter how long it has been since they last talked?? because any time at all is too long???
lloyd saying that if anyone hears him say that they'll think they're gyeonwoo and jiknyeo. y'know. the mythical forbidden lovers that live in different realms and can only meet when the stars align so to speak.
y'know. just casually comparing your protagonists to one of the most romantic and tragic couples in mythology. no biggie.
and again. javier smiling when he sees that lloyd is still just the way he was when they were together. hello. hi. can i help you.
lloyd knowing exactly how long it's been since they saw each other in person. down to the very day. "107 years, 7 months and 17 days".
javier getting really, really, really happy about it. about lloyd still being the same. and thinking that, maybe, lloyd feels the same way deep down.
lloyd being so very, very casual about saying "it's been a while so i'm glad to see you" very specifically calling back to the very thing javier says to him whenever they talk.
and then. and then javier. thinking as he sees lloyd leave. that it was really nice to meet him after so long. and that the sight of him leaving still felt the same as it did before. and wondering if those gyeonwoo and jiknyeo lloyd mentioned before felt like this too.
javier. comparing what he feels at seeing lloyd leave. to what the cowherd and the weaver girl felt at separating again.
bk moon i am crawling on your ceiling
anyway if this novel doesn't end with the barriers between hell and heaven falling apart so lloyd and javier can spend the rest of eternity together instead of helplessly pinning over the other and reminiscing over the lifetime they already spent together i will throw someone off a bridge <3