The Royal Family has several residences and properties scattered throughout the UK – but not all of them are regularly occupied.
King Charles III could soon face a “difficult conversation” on a key issue that has made the Royal Family “a bit vulnerable”, an expert has warned. The Royal Family has a number of residences dotted throughout the UK, including Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle, Balmoral Castle and Sandringham Estate. But the issue of empty royal properties being funded by the British taxpayer has been brought to the fore, particularly with so many people suffering with financial hardship during the cost of living crisis.
The question of whether the King and his wife Queen Camilla will eventually move to Buckingham Palace has also been asked, with the couple currently staying at Clarence House when they are in London. Frogmore Cottage is also due to soon be officially vacated by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, but it remains clear who will then live in the Windsor property. Daily Express royal correspondent Richard Palmer has explained this could soon cause a big problem and may not go down too well with British taxpayers.
He told the Daily Express Royal Round Up: “Lots of people are going to say the royals have lots of houses. This is a difficult one for them. “They have Kensington Palace, Frogmore Cottage which if Harry and Meghan haven’t formally vacated it yet, they are about to. Who is going to live there? “When the King goes up to Balmoral Estate, he stays at Birkhall. Will other members of the family use Balmoral? Will that remain empty? Will it be opened up to the public? “There are a number of properties on the Royal Estate on the price and taxpayer-funded side that make the Royal Family a bit vulnerable on this issue.”
Mr Palmer also raised the question over whether King Charles and Queen Camilla will ever make the move to Buckingham Palace – a huge tourist attraction for millions of people visiting the UK. He believes this is particularly important as a lot of money is being spent on the monarch’s quarters in the palace, warning it might not reflect well on the Royal Family to have so many empty properties. The royal expert continued: “Many people will say this is the Royal Family and these are historic properties
“Will the King and Queen ever move into Buckingham Palace? Around 50 percent of all tourists visiting London go to the palace to have their picture taken outside it because it’s where the King lives in the public’s mind “Except he doesn’t as he and Camilla are living in Clarence House when they are in London. Many people think they will never move into the palace.
“That will be a difficult conversation in four or five years’ time if they decide not to move in because a lot of money is being spent on the monarch’s quarters in the palace and the king has had a say in the design of all of that.
Mr Palmer further warned: “There are quite a few properties lying empty – the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester’s former home at Kensington Palace and it’s been empty for nearly four years. “When there is a homelessness crisis and a financial crisis in this country, some people might say it is not a great look for the Royal Family to have all of these empty properties.”