Duchess Kate wanted a second ‘family’ kitchen added to the KP renovations

FFN_FlyUK_TroopingTheColour_061414_51450791

Over the weekend, we discussed the ballooning costs of Prince William and Duchess Kate’s Kensington Palace renovations. The initial news – that the Palace redo of merely one “apartment” cost £4 million – was actually a low estimate. And the news came at the same time that the Queen bought William and Kate a £8 million helicopter, since they’ll need some way to get around from Anmer Hall to KP. But, as I said, there are new details about the cost of the reno and a slew of new quotes aimed at making it seem like Kate and William acknowledge the burdensome costs and they are looking into it. Some highlights:

*The bulk of the renovations to Kensington Palace’s Apartment 1 was paid for by the Queen, and by that we mean the British taxpayers. The Queen is given a certain amount of money to maintain all of the historical-preservation castles and palaces, and there’s actually a “backlog” of work to be done on other palaces and castles. Work that had to be put off so KP could be prioritized.

*The new cost of the KP renovation: “A total of £4.5 million has now been spent on the works, including £3.4 million in the last year and the removal of asbestos from the apartment.”

*Not only did William and Kate “privately” fund the decorations for KP, they also added on a second “family” kitchen. You know, so Prince George would never have to spend time with the peasant staffers. So Kate could make “private” meals, I guess. I don’t really understand why that couldn’t be done with one big kitchen, but whatever. The regular kitchen was refurbished at a cost of £170,000 and the second kitchen was paid for “privately.”

*When asked about all of this “William & Kate paid for the decorations privately” stuff and whether “privately” was a royal euphemism for “Prince Charles paid for it,” this is what the Clarence House spokesman said: “Many young couples when doing up houses seek help from their parents or grandparents. There may have been some assistance.”

*Another aide told The Daily Mail: “The Cambridges were actually extremely sensitive to the fact that public funds were being used to pay for a lot of this work. They understood that it would be a drain on public expenditure and they wanted to minimise that. It is not done out to lavish standards. You would be surprised at what an ordinary level the apartment has been done to. Comfortable, but an ordinary level of furnishing.”

[From The Telegraph & The Daily Mail]

I realize that Kensington Palace is considered a “public building” and it’s all part of the living history aspect of the royal family. But for the love of God… why is Charles letting them blow through all of this money? William has a trust, an inheritance left to him by his mother. I really don’t understand why everyone pays their way – Kate’s parents are always paying for their vacations, Charles is always paying for Kate’s clothes and now he’s paying for all of the decorations in KP. And seriously… let’s not forget Anmer Hall. We haven’t even heard about the cost of that renovation and interior design yet. All of this for William… who has made it clear that no amount of taxpayer-funded bribery will get him to like royal work. Sigh.

FFN_FlyUK_TroopingTheColour_061414_51450843

FFN_Royals_Polo_FLYUK_061514_51451864

Photos courtesy of WENN, Fame/Flynet.

Related stories

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

336 Responses to “Duchess Kate wanted a second ‘family’ kitchen added to the KP renovations”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Kiddo says:

    That is quite the sourpuss face photo.

  2. Alicia says:

    Weird question, but is Little G toilet trained already? He doesn’t look like he’s wearing a nappy.

    • Abbott says:

      Doubt a 12-month old is potty trained. That would require work. Guessing its a cloth diaper?

      • AmyR says:

        I was never able to get cloth diapers to look that trim. My daughter usually had a bigger diaper booty than her disposable-clad classmates.

      • K says:

        Cloth are bulkier than dispos. In fact you usually need larger size clothing for them – a UK babyclothes firm, Frugi, was originally called, “Cut For Cloth”. They’re better than they were, but still larger. (I use both.)

    • feebee says:

      No, it’s just a fresh one :)

  3. delphi says:

    That picture wins the universe today! Hey, Kaiser, how about a “Caption Kate” thread sometime? It could be fun…especially on this site.

  4. Erinn says:

    I love seeing her like she is in the last photo. She looks so natural, and prettier in normal clothes. Her hair didn’t even look as fakely plumped.

    Also, I love that baby. He’s the cutest.

    • FLORC says:

      The photo is heavily edited. It was discussed with a side by side view when they came out.
      Wrinkles, moles/beauty marks, heavy make up all got touched up.
      I agree she looks better, but that’s not an accurate likeness to in person.

  5. blue marie says:

    *snort* in what universe is a 2 kitchen home considered ordinary?

    • ncboudicca says:

      My sister and I were waiting at BP to watch the Changing of the Guard, and while we were hanging out, we noticed all the aides/staffers coming in and out of the the gate – quite a few high-end BMWs and Range Rovers, and very expensive suits/dresses/shoes/bags. I’m skeptical that the aides even have a clue what “ordinary” is.

      • MinnFinn says:

        I thought I read somewhere that 1A now has 3 kitchens. The third is for Cambridge staff.

      • FLORC says:

        MinnFinn
        This confused me too. 1 kitchen for staff, another seperate kitchen for just George’s meal prep, bottle, his needs etc… And now a 3rd for Kate and family use only.
        Now all 3 kitchens have been confirmed down the timeline of articles. They’re not all mentioned at once though. And no single kitchen is said to also suit another kitchens needs. So the staff or family kitchen cannot serve as George’s kitchen. All are seperate.

    • L says:

      I have a friend that grew up in a 2 kitchen home. Except her dad is a partner at a law firm, and mom is a party planner-so one was the catering kitchen, and one was the family kitchen. The catering kitchen looked like a restaurant kitchen and was supposed to be for big 100+ person events (and their family had tons of those). The family kitchen was more every day breakfast/lunch/dinner kind of stuff that mom had.

      That’s the only way it makes sense to me, although I still wouldn’t call it “ordinary”

      • bluhare says:

        That’s what I think too, L. Although what happened to George’s kitchen? I thought he had his own!

        A friend of mine has a house with a “dirty kitchen”, with a separate cooktop for frying and sautéing so all the grease stays out of the main one.

      • FLORC says:

        Again!
        I should have raed down first.
        George does have his own and it’s said to be bigger than originally thought. Not simply a closet size with bottle cleaner and food prepper. It sounds like the size of my eat in kitchen.

    • Lis says:

      My best friend in high school was Italian – her parents were farmers and had a main floor kitchen and the summer kitchen in the walkout basement for canning and etc. It is very common among certain cultures.

    • Sixer says:

      Ha. Exactly, blue marie.

      Having said that, I BOUGHT a two-kitchen home! It’s a standard British semi-detached house with a single storey extension that had been used as a granny annexe. Hence the second kitchen. Needless to say, we don’t need two kitchens and it’s now a study.

      • hmmm says:

        Bulb light moment, Sixer, thanks to you. What if one of those 3 kitchens is in reality for the Midds?

      • LAK says:

        i love how there is a shading of the standard of kitchens already in existence at KP and already in use for all sorts of functions.

        These two aren’t going to have huge dinners in their private quarters, they don’t have a record of throwing large dinners officially or unofficially.

        They got a second ‘family’ kitchen because they could. period. William does love those ‘cosy’ dinners at Middleton towers and this is a way to recreate them. And it is very Marie Antoinette’s Le Petit Trainon of them especially since they gave the lion’s share of the kitchen bills [and everything else] to the taxpayer.

        And i simply love this “Many young couples when doing up houses seek help from their parents or grandparents. There may have been some assistance.”

        really? reaLLY? REALLY??

        Still playing the ‘we are ordinary and just like us’ game

        what a load of Bollocks!!!

      • hmmm says:

        Thanks, LAK. It has been made to sound as if this palace was in ruins, and people are buying it. Yes, they have a second or third kitchen because they can. And no, they don’t seem to entertain at all except for the Midds. How could they entertain much anyway considering the time Willy and Waity spend apart?

    • mkyarwood says:

      An Italian/North American one — my nonna had the one upstairs and the one in the basement, which is considered less formal and more for every day use. Of course, Prince Charles didn’t buy hers. They’re uncommon in Italy tho, and I doubt Kate’s kitchen has any cultural significance.

      • FLORC says:

        That’s common with Italian American family homes.
        1 kitchen is lovely, but not to be used and get dirty. It’s for show, entertaining, and presenting.

        The 2nd kitchen is a small fridge, small stone, and a few cabinets in the basement. None of it was nice looking and the basement was rarely furnished. Imagine cooking next to your boiler.

        Imagine my complete shock when I was home shopping! Every basement had a kitchen! Also, loads of glass, floor to ceiling mirrors, and stone work. Homes looked like churches.

        I’m sure you know this all mkyarwood.
        Just sharing my experience.

      • hmmm says:

        Just as an aside, FLORC et al,

        Kitchen info like this gives me warm fuzzies, especially coming from an Eastern European family. Carry on. :)

    • lisa says:

      i grew up in a mostly italian american neighborhood and all the italian families, including mine, had a second kitchen. these werent mansions or anything.

      me, i dont even want the 1 kitchen i have.

    • dread pirate cuervo says:

      I live in a regular middle class, cape house in NJ & we have the Italian summer kitchen, too. The wall oven & stove top weren’t hooked up when we bought the house, but I would use them if they were. I do use the downstairs fridge. One day we’ll get around to remodeling & plan to keep both kitchens.

  6. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    My recollection is that Diana was told by the head of the KP staff not to come in the kitchen because it made the staff uncomfortable. Maybe Kate wanted to be able to make a pbj sandwich if she felt like it? Idk, that does seem like a crazy amount of money to renovate an apartment, even if you gutted it.

    • LadySlippers says:

      •GoodNames•

      If you read the non-DM articles, since KP is a historical building, everything, absolutely every decision, has to be approved by a board/committee that specialises in that specific architectural style etc. etc. etc..

      Due to my migraines, I read a lot, and anytime you have a grade anything building, budgets go overboard. Oddly enough, the recession made it worse because so many companies went out of business making a lot of items more scarce. I kid you not.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Yes, I saw below that it was a 22 room apartment, and it says in above that there was an asbestos problem, so I guess I can see it. I just always balk at that kind of money. Remember when Bill Gates spent over a hundred million on his house? I just can’t grasp it. What could you possibly buy that cost that much?

        I’m so sorry your poor head suffers so.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •GoodNames•

        At least the roof isn’t thatched — thatchers are fairly rare these days and not many are training to become one so it’s gonna get tougher for families in the UK that have thatched roofs. Because they are required by law to have it.

        In Japan, they are struggling with the same issue. And that’s where I fell in love with thatched roofs. *dreamy sigh*

        As for expense, overall the expense is still less than Gate’s house. Then of course you have my ‘neighbour’ Warren Buffet. He still lives in the same house (it’s nice but not $100 million nice) he lived in prior to becoming a billionaire. He and his kids are still fairly active in and around Omaha. Normal guy. Very likeable and has no wish to look anything other than a normal guy.

      • Birdix says:

        Buffet has a summer house across the street from me in CA. And in a neighborhood where everyone tore down the 1930s beach cottages to build mega mansions in the last 20 years, his house has stayed the same nice but relatively modest home.

      • bluhare says:

        Gates spent $100 million on his home? Not when he built it.

      • FLORC says:

        Gate’s home has user settings. many rooms are temperature controlled to match the comfort of the person entering the room. If prefered music will start to play and meals will be signalled to be prepared if a stomach growls loud enough.
        All this by sensors. You don’t have press a button. You simply exist within a room.

        That house is truly everything he could imagine at the time and it changes constantly.

      • bluhare says:

        I remember when it was built it was the most expensive ever built around here, and on the county tax roll for $38 or 50 million. Can’t remember which. Not to say he hasn’t kept pace with the technology, but he didn’t spent $100 million when he built it, and some of that stuff was talked about (not the stomach growling stuff though).

    • Sixer says:

      My brother was a design engineer on the M&E refit of Claridge’s. You wouldn’t believe the cost.

      My problem isn’t so much how much this cost, it’s that the Crown Estate had better priorities. English Heritage are classifying several of the monuments/palaces as at risk (ie in desperate need of repair). Windsor Castle still needs work. Buckingham Palace’s renovation share was only £1m. There was a suitable apartment at KP available which would only have needed redecorating.

      If the money is limited, it should be funnelled to Crown Estate properties accessible to the public or used for state occasions. Not private flats.

      • bluhare says:

        I agree with you, Sixer. Someone mentioned on another blog that if William and Kate had told people they wouldn’t be based out of there for a few years while William flies, then the renovations could have been spread out over more time, freeing up some money for something more urgent. I thought that a great point.

      • Meerkat says:

        Sixer, have you read War of the Windsors? If only half of it is true – and it is cross-referenced – it is still mind-blowing. Avarice, lies, tax evasion, sex and drugs and rock ‘n roll…

    • LadySlippers says:

      •Sixer•

      It boggles my mind how little of the income generated by the Crown Estates actually goes to the Soveriegn’s Grant. To me it makes sense if the enormous income generated by the entire Estate be used to — well, support all it was meant to — the buildings, the grounds, and all the peoples associated with them.

      • Sixer says:

        I think the whole question of financing the RF and the Crown Estates and what constitutes private income and what doesn’t, is so shrouded in doublespeak as to make most of the (general, rather than specific) figures we see meaningless.

        Or at least, meaningless in terms of how much the RF actually costs, how much they should cost, and how much they bring in.

        Many UK government income streams have names that sound as though the monies they raise have targeted expenditures but in fact go straight into the general purse – our road tax doesn’t fund our roads, our National Insurance doesn’t cover our welfare payments, etc etc.

        That’s the British establishment for you, I’m afraid. Smoke and mirrors all the way!

      • LadySlippers says:

        •Sixer•

        Smoke-n-Mirrors.

        Ummmmm isn’t that *every* governments mantra????

        😉

      • hmmm says:

        Yes, smoke and mirrors. It makes those highly touted “facts’ suspect, IMO.

      • LAK says:

        LS: and how would the government pay for public services???

        The crown estates’ profits, barring the portion that pays for the head of state ie the sovereign grant, specifically pays for public services. Army. NHS, police. Parliament.

        The government isn’t taking money from the royals for giggles and historically the crown estates always paid for government so the idea that it should all go to historical places is ludicrous even if I personally adore history and it’s artefacts.

        Taxes will never cover everything and whilst the crown estates aren’t 100% sufficient, our tax bills would be much, much bigger without them – we’d certainly not have self indulgent things like free NHS. Plus historically we’d have been taxed out of existence french peasant style if the crown estates hadn’t been specifically earmarked to pay for the instrument of government.

        The more pertinent question is why the sovereign grant isn’t better managed. Why allocate a lion share of the budget to 2 people who have options when other public buildings are crumbling and you’ve (HM/historical palaces etc) been complaining (asking for state handouts for it) for years!!!! The state of BP has been known longer than WK have been married and yet money is set aside AND allowed to spiral out of control for 2 people who have no intention of living permanently in the space or even using it the way the white wash is claiming it will be used.

        This white wash is bollocks.

      • bluhare says:

        Thank you, LAK. The other 85% pays for government, which the monarch used to pay for out of the crown estate before George III turned it over in exchange for a lump sum payment every year. So if the Queen still got all the profit, she’d be paying some government salaries too.

  7. Faye says:

    4 million pounds for extensive renovations of a 22-room “apartment”, in London -especially a place like Kensington, which probably has tons of restrictions on the types of materials that can be used- isn’t actually crazily excessive. I think for most British taxpayers who are upset about this (well, just the ones I know, to be honest), the issue is that William and Kate just aren’t doing enough public work to justify this or make it palatable. This is essentially a “work perk,” since it’s paid by the taxpayers, and there just isn’t a whole lot of royal work going on as far as we can see.

    I did roll my eyes at “plenty of young people get help from their parents and grandparents when setting up a home.” Really? Not me. Not anybody I know. Sometimes the Royal PR seems remarkly inept.

    • in_theory says:

      I was just helped by my parents when I moved. It might not happen in your surroundings, but it’s not out of the ordinary.

      • Faye says:

        I’m not saying it’s wrong, it’s the phrasing that got me. If Charles wants to give money to his son, certainly that’s his business. But this whole “*Everybody* does it” thing is off-putting to me – it just sounds whiny and defensive.

      • hmmm says:

        @in_theory
        You’re not a millionaire like William.

      • in_theory says:

        @hmmm: How do you know?
        But joking aside, I don’t get your point. Parents or grandparents wanting to help the younger family has nothing to do with who has how much money but with an understanding of being a family that helps one another.

      • hmmm says:

        @in_theory,

        That’s just disingenuous. No mature adult with self-respect asks for money from the parents to lavish upon themselves when they themselves are rolling in it.

      • LNG says:

        My parents insist on helping my husband and I out with certain things (wedding, house purchase, etc.), even though we have no money issues. Sometimes its not a matter of asking for it – my parents like to help, can afford to do it, and will not take no for an answer. When I protest, my father says he wants to spend it on us while he can watch us enjoy it… its hard to argue with that.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        I think Faye is referring to the fact that these two never seem to pay for anything, ever. She’s not saying it’s odd for parents to help out with a big purchase or an occasional treat or necessity, but what parents still buy their 30 something children their furniture and clothes and houses and jewelry and servants and vacations when the children are wealthy in their own right? Then they act like it’s normal. I agree with her.

      • hmmm says:

        Thanks for placing it in context, GoodNamesAllTaken. Precisely!

      • LadySlippers says:

        But (I’m gonna play devil’s advocate here) •GoodNames• these aren’t normal people.

        They are royals living in a famous and very historic building (it’s even
        been designated a Historic Royal Palace like the Tower of London), working (granted not often enough) for the British govt and sometimes, various Commonwealth govts. It’s not quite the same as even multimillionaires (which often have mummy and daddy paying for stuff too).

      • hmmm says:

        @LS

        Then their PR should lay off that lame motif of being like thee and me. And regardless of the vast history, which is so impressive and grand, I am sure it leaves many people speechless, they spend money like water and don’t give a flying f what we peons and the taxpayers think or say. They are in their happy little entitled bubble. Divine right, don’t ya know.

        You have to be downright gullible to believe that codswallop about weight of heritage and the given cost of that very. weighty. and overriding. obscenely. expensive ‘heritage’ in this day and age. Show me the money.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •hmmm•

        The BRF’s PR has usually not been very good but it’s because you honestly cannot please everyone. No matter what PR tactic they employ — it’ll piss someone off.

        But gullible about a remodel? No. Anyone that has any experience with remodels or renovations has said this expense is very typical. They’ve shown up on every post but generally get ignored. The place we are talking about is not only historic, but huge, and that ain’t cheap. Put them together and the expense really goes up. Remember an outside committee determines what and how historical graded building must be kept to — not anyone else.

      • Megan says:

        Hmmm …I totally disagree. My parents have helped my sisters and me well into our 30′s because they could and they enjoyed doing so. All three of us launched successful business thanks to their support and now we spoil them. Why do we that? Because we can and we enjoy doing so.

      • Sixer says:

        @LS

        But the renovations for the public areas of the Historic Royal Palaces (Hampton Court, Tower of London, Kew, Banqueting House, KP) is self-managed by a charity. They get no Sovereign Grant money. They get no other government money. Any renovations and conservations for these palaces come from charitable donations.

        This is what I mean by smoke and mirrors. Where, in the discussion of all this, has mention been made that half the Royal Palaces are maintained by charitable contributions from the public? Nowhere. We get the sense of “Look at all this heritage the Queen has to maintain. It costs a lot, you know”. Yes, it does cost a lot. But the Queen ain’t payin’ for most of it, and when she does pay, it’s for 3 kitchens for the laziest members of her family.

        Like I said, I do not question the cost of renovating listed buildings. It’s an expensive endeavour. What I question is the direction of monies towards a private flat (when a suitable private flat already existed) when those monies were FOUR times what was spent on maintaining Buckingham Palace in that year and when Windsor Castle is still in need of repair and when other monuments – eg the Albert Memorial – are being classified as at risk.

        That it costs £4m to renovate a 22 room apartment in an historic building is quite true. That £4m should have been spent on private living quarters in a single historic building when a) money is limited, b) other historic buildings were in greater need of repair and c) are publicly accessible heritage sites – not justifiable in any way, to my mind.

      • bluhare says:

        Sixer, that might be your best post ever!

      • hmmm says:

        Thanks for an incredibly informative post, Sixer. I understand so much more now.

        Brilliant!

      • LAK says:

        Bravo Sixer!!!

      • Sixer says:

        Just for laughs, here is the fundraising page for “American Friends”:

        http://www.hrp.org.uk/supportus/donatingfromtheusa

        And here is info on the £12m already raised from private donations for KP and the current appeal for further renovations:

        http://www.hrp.org.uk/supportus/projects/kensington-kings-state-apartments

        Suddenly, £4m for a PRIVATE FLAT from taxpayer funds takes on a whole new flavour, doesn’t it?

      • bluhare says:

        Wowzer. Does anyone know where the King’s apartments are in KP? Are they part of the public area now?

    • Sullivan says:

      Yeah, the ‘plenty of young people get help’ thing is interesting. Aren’t they in their 30s?

      • ncboudicca says:

        mmmhmmm, that’s what I was thinking, too. I know many twenty-somethings who got a little help (or a lot of help) when getting into their very first place on their own. But by one’s mid-30s…..eh, not so much!

      • FLORC says:

        My husband and I bought our 1st home ourselves in our mid to late 20′s.
        We had some help that was more sweat equity from parents and family or a shopping trip to lowes or home depot, but did almost all ourselves.

        Our home is also not taken care of and “owned” by the people.
        If we want something we take care of it. To accept a handout for luxuries and not essential needs is something i’d be ashamed to do.

      • wolfpup says:

        Nobody is getting it. They are *special snowflakes*!

    • hmmm says:

      @LS

      Why should the palace try to please anyone? They should be open and above board. Instead we get blatant lies. How is lying ever an excuse for trying to please?

      What is the palace afraid of?

  8. Bernice says:

    In the kitchen, Kate would not be welcomed as she would hinder the staff. She, like any mother and wife, wants a kitchen she can go into to fix snacks or small family meals.

    • hmmm says:

      All you need for that is a kitchenette, not an entire other kitchen. It doesn’t take much to prepare a frozen meal, either.

    • LadySlippers says:

      •Bernice•

      Diana really regretted not having a family-style kitchen put in as well. I’d bet Harry does the same thing.

      •hmmm•

      From the sounds of it — it’s fairly normal sized kitchen. Kate adores to cook for family and friends. It’s been her thang for ages. Why begrudge her a pleasure?

      • bluhare says:

        I’ve never read that about Diana. Do you have a link?

      • wolfpup says:

        Are there cooks in the other kitchen 24/7? And isn’t there anyone hired to clean up the messes?…although that’s probably too complicated.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •bluhare•

        In several biographies about Diana there’s usually a bit about her not being able to just pop into a kitchen just to fix little things for her or her boys. She had to order trays or bother staff when they wanted to eat (even if they had retired to their living quarters). And Diana adored the domestic aspect of a relationship too. She’d love to iron clothes and other little things for her boyfriends.

        •wolfpup•

        No, as far as I know staff isn’t in the large ‘main’ kitchen 24/7 which is why having a personal, non-staffed kitchen makes sense.

        Kate is well known (as is Camilla) for her love of cooking for William and family/friends. That’s been a very important part of who she is — she loves to cook for people. I think having a personal, non-staffed kitchen makes perfect sense.

      • hmmm says:

        I’ve not read that she adores to cook for her family. I have seen what she buys from the supermarket in Wales and it’s stuff like frozen pizza. I doubt that she dares wreck her perfect manicure by preparing a meal from scratch.

        I also hear she loves to grow her own potatoes (missed that in the pix in Anglesey) and probably digs them up herself. Probably needs that second kitchen for canning those jams she also loves to make. ;) Oh, and the sausages.

      • littlestar says:

        This is the first time I’ve heard about Kate loving to cook. I’m such a sour puss about Kate, is this for real or is this made up to make her look good? Because if it’s true, this would be the one small thing I actually like about Kate ha.

      • LadySlippers says:

        Nope, it’s actually true, Kate loves to cook.

        The fact that Kate loves to cook, I thought, was fairly common knowledge as it’s been reported on before. And has been known since St Andrew’s. Even before William and Kate started dating, their house was known for their dinner parties which she cooked for. Like Camilla, her signature dish is a cooked chicken.

        Harry is known to come over just to be fed since his cooking skills are even worse than William’s (I’m not sure how that’s possible!)…. Lol

        Y’all need to read some of the books out there! 😊 There’s a whole wealth of knowledge you’re missing out on.

      • LNG says:

        I’ve read often about Kate liking to cook. They alluded to it in the engagement interview too – William would try to cook for her and she would have to step in to save the day when he messed it all up.

        I’m with LadySlippers on this one. I think it would be awkward to try and cook in the big industrial kitchen used by the staff – I would hate to not know what I could and couldn’t use from my fridge. Or not know what we even had when I went to cook something. Or to have a professional chef in my space while I’m just trying to make some normal grilled cheese sandwiches! I don’t think a smaller family kitchen is that big of a deal in this context.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •LNG•

        Yep, they talked about William’s attempts to cook and her needing to rescue him in their engagement interview! Lol

        Big industrial kitchens suck for just whipping up little stuff as everything is geared for cooking for the masses. I totally would want my own kitchen — and I’m not a huge cook.

      • FLORC says:

        Littlestar
        News to me too. I don’t really count those few trips where Kate was papped with fresh groceries over flowing her bags and related articles that Kate loves making sausage and jams.
        Then there were so many articles about how Kate has her cooks make her this diet or that diet. Or that dish that involves killing a goose by forcefeeding it.

        She may have enjoyed it and loves throwing a party, but I can’t see it as a day to day thing with her at this point in her life. Maybe when it’s a private and tiny, informal gathering of friends.

        Last I read doesn’t George has his own cook as well. Someone prepares and pulverizes his organic food daily.

      • AM says:

        I actually have no issue with the second kitchen, and even the very expensive stove (doubtful a high-end chef would be willing to work without one). It’s the hypocrisy. I thought the line they were selling was Kate does almost all of the cooking with help from time to time from the housekeeper.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •AM•

        I think they were selling the ‘just like us’ spiel while they lived in Anglesey, I honestly haven’t heard it in quite some time. But even then, they weren’t quite like us so it rang hollow.

        So I get what your saying.

        •Florc•

        I’ve never read that she’s forced fed a goose. Where’d you read that? Wow. Yuck.

        But a smaller kitchen does make a lot of sense. As •LNG• said, being able to pop in to heat up a can if soup or make your own grilled cheese is priceless.

      • bluhare says:

        LS, you said she regretted not having a kitchen put in. I have never ever read that and I’ve got a lot of the bios as well. Where did you read it?

      • AM says:

        Ah, but LS, they just pulled out the “just like us” with the “like many couples” line as related to this project.

      • FLORC says:

        LadySlippers
        2nd attempt at this reply to you. Sorry if my replies are slow and short for that reason.

        Kate was said to enjoy a dish where the goose is force fed until death. It had to be shipped in from France I think because it was illegal locally.
        The dish is calle Foie Gras. It’s equally bad if not worse than how Veal is made.
        Not that she actually force fed the Goose hereslf.

      • LAK says:

        LS: Diana regretted not having informality with the staff. She wanted to hang out with the staff in their kitchens because the entire apparatus of formal relations of royal staff made her uncomfortable. That anecdote wasn’t about her wanting or regretting having an entire other kitchen to herself. The staff felt uncomfortable having her pop in to have a cup with them.

        Believe me, royal staff are stiffer than a board about their relations. It might be 2014 or whatever era, but staff relations are still downtown abbey. And they guard their patch fiercely.

    • PennyLane says:

      When Ellen Barkin and her billionaire husband broke up, I read an article at the time that said the lack of a second ‘family’ kitchen had been a huge deal in their marriage. Her billionaire control freak of a husband refused to build a smaller second kitchen in addition to the giant catering kitchen, and she always felt like she was staying in a hotel as a result. She never felt at home in what was technically her home.

      So I can understand the second kitchen bit – just not why it cost $200,000 in fixtures and appliances (the structural remodeling aspect was paid for as part of the larger renovations).

      • FLORC says:

        I would imagine it’s the best of the best they have installed. It’s a family kitchen that could easily be used as a catering kitchen.

      • hmmm says:

        Why did they not pay for the other kitchen as well? What did they pay for in the family kitchen that they didn’t in the big kitchen? It’s confusing. Did they not pay for appliances etc in the big kitchen? If so, why not?

      • Faye says:

        Top of the line kitchen appliances are hella expensive (we built our house from scratch so unfortunately, I can attest to that). In England because of VAT the cost is even higher than in the U.S. If they got really expensive countertops, sink, etc., which I’m sure they did, I can easily see it getting to $200,000.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •hmmm•

        Because the bigger ‘staff’ kitchen would and often does royal engagements. So it’s the business side of the home.

      • bluhare says:

        LS, have William and Kate hosted engagements at their own home? I thought they went to the public areas for that.

      • hmmm says:

        bluhare,

        The two times I remember them hosting anything was at KP, and recently, the Orangery, besides the staff party at Christmas elsewhere.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •bluhare•

        To the best of my knowledge no, but they’ve never had an official residence either, and that’s one key difference between an official residence and a personal residence.

      • bluhare says:

        hmmm, did they actually host that do at the Orangery or just attend? I don’t recall them ever hosting anything, but do recall them being guest(s) of honor.

        Are you talking about State dinners, LS? If that’s the case, they probably won’t be hosting any of those for quite a while. They could certainly host fundraisers for programs they work on, but they haven’t actually hosted any that I’m aware of. Kate went to a dinner for a business women’s charity, but that was in a public space, not theirs, and she didn’t host it.

      • hmmm says:

        I stand corrected, bluhare. They merely attended a reception at The Orangery.

      • Lady D says:

        A question my English friends. I’ve looked at several pictures in the DM of mansions/castles for sale, and I can never spot the refrigerator in the kitchen. Are they all short, half-sized appliances? Here, some of them are 6′ or taller and almost as wide.

  9. maybeiamcrazy says:

    Kensington Palace needed a renovation and if it was any other member of BRF people wouldn’t be outraged as much. Which only shows how fed up people are with these two. Can’t BRF really see how damaging Will and Kate has been for the monarchy thus far? If Charles wants to sit on that throne (we all know he does) he’ll have to find a solution to Will’s and Kate’s pr missteps.

  10. Lis says:

    She is from a normal, common family – I can understand wanting your ‘own’ kitchen.

    • FLORC says:

      The Middleon’s moved from a large home to an estate because there was a bus stop too close to their home. They have no titles so are common (i guess), but are not “common” in an average joe sense.
      Money and luxury has surrounded Kate for longer than the press lets on.

      So, that isn’t a logical reason. I would think it’s more a kitchen to design for a family without the heavy presence of staff and clinical cooking environment.

      • The Original Mia says:

        That normal, common family now wears signet rings with their new family crest. Not so normal anymore and they want everyone to know it.

      • FLORC says:

        Fair point Mia
        They’ve done so much to appear as more elitist. The exclusive vacation spots, RPO’s to cover them without Kate, William, or George present, and the signet rings are all valid points of how hard they’ve been trying to come off as aristocratic and not normal.
        Normal only comes into play when there’s a pr angle.

      • LNG says:

        But that all came much later, did it not? I thought she was raised in a pretty normal family, at least in her younger days.

      • FLORC says:

        LNG

        I guess it really comes down to where, when, and how you’ve absorbed your family values. If you live a modest lifestyle in your single digit years and then live a lavish lifestyle for the next 20 years do you still hold to those modest values of your younger years?
        Her family seems close and nice, but the issue here is more of Kate doesn’t know the value of money.
        Yes she haggles for overpriced lamps here and there, but her money has not been earned. It’s always given. So having this kitchen seems to fall into the frivalous spending of other peoples money and is less seen as a family kitchen where they can just relax as a family.

        I feel like i’ve rambled… Did I answer the question?

      • AM says:

        Not only that the modest days were limited to younger years, but that every day since has been dedicated to covering up those modest beginnings and pretending to be of the manor born. I would actually bet Kate was shocked the first time she visited Sandringham and saw how shabby it is.

      • LNG says:

        FLORC – yes, you answered it! I guess I’m just wondering whether they were ever rich enough to pay live in chefs? Or I guess even if they were that rich if they chose to have them. They talk a lot about being a close knit family etc etc etc and I guess in my mind that always equated to spending time cooking/eating together in the kitchen. I think its understandable that she wants the same experience with her family, even if she has absolutely no concept of the value of money in general.

      • MinnFinn says:

        LNG, I read that pre-marriage years, William liked having the occasional Sunday meal at the Middletons because Carole made traditional family dinners.

        Live in chefs? My guess is no live in chef before 2012 when they bought their present manor home. But possibly now they do.

        About age 13 until 2012, Kate’s parents lived in the same house in Bucklebury. Reports are they paid £795,000 for it. That Bucklebury home is not a manor but not a humble middle class dwelling either. I think it has 8 bedrooms. Photo at this link. Point being I doubt there was space for live-in domestic help.
        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1378288/Kate-Middletons-family-Just-rich-Middletons.html

      • FLORC says:

        MinnFinn
        My theory of why William was always at the Midds for dinner is this.
        He was treated like Gold! His blood family expects so much of him. They hold hi to a standard. And while that standard seems to have been lowered lately to accomidate him things are still expected of him.

        Carole and the Midds only xpected him to come to dinner and someday marry their daughter. He was perfect as he was and they would never dream of asking him to improve. They catered to his ego and he could be lazy while still receiving praise.

      • Megan says:

        FLORC -it’s not Kate’s fault her family is rich. Suggesting she is somehow flawed because her parents were successful is really disrespectful to the Middletons, who undoubtedly worked their butts off to make their business a success.

      • FLORC says:

        Megan
        I don’t think I was suggesting Kate is flawed because of money.
        I know lots of wealthy people that either let it go to their heads or don’t.
        It’s really on the person. Do they want to be cared for and not think too hard about where this money is coming from?

        And i’m taking a few knocks to my own cousins that have wealthy parents. Those parents either worked hard and expect their children to do the same or they worked hard so their children would never have to work like them.

        And while I do not doubt Carole worked her tush off for her business the numbers in the beginning are weird.
        Just like Uncle Gary’s numbers. Refering to his known and caught on camera drug dealings. And under age slave dealings in south america. He’s terrible.

        Lastly, Megan.
        People should be judged on their own. I do not praise those for the success of their parents or fault them for the mistakes of their parents.
        Kate is her own person. Her parents had success. She merely reaped the rewards. She’s chosen her path thus far. She can still change, but as of now she appears to not know the value of money or understand how to earn it. It is simply a river that flows endlessly to her hand.

      • hmmm says:

        She’s chosen her path thus far. She can still change, but as of now she appears to not know the value of money or understand how to earn it. It is simply a river that flows endlessly to her hand.

        I love this, FLORC. That’s Kate in a nutshell. It’s hard to wrap one’s mind around such an attitude and expectation.

        Where is that river? I want one. :)

      • Francis says:

        I have never bought that they are wealthy. If they were why did it take until After the marriage to move into a Manor home? Did PW pay for it?
        The home they had in Bucklebury for years was purchased as a fixer upper,for around $650,000, the Middleton’s added on to it over the years,but it was not a lavish home inside. Kate never had servants as someone seems to be implied. I think one day this so called wealth is going to implode like Madoff . I just don’t see the wealth? Rumour has it PW bought the house. The vacation homes were borrowed and there are questions on how the city flat was bought. Something doesn’t add up with this family financially. IMO

        P.S. the pinkie rings are hilarious. They are every climbing cliche’.

      • AM says:

        Francis,
        It’s always stood out to me that any time William and Kate travel ANYWHERE, it’s Kate’s first time visiting. You would think that coming from a wealthy family, she would have at least been for shopping trips to New York before.

    • hmmm says:

      Yes, FLORC, I’m guessing that William was coddled and shmoozed at these gatherings. He just had to sit back and be treated like a king.

      • Dame Snarkweek says:

        FLORC and Hmmm
        Not true. William himself admitted, quite honestly but uncomfortably in an interview that he did not go the traditional route of asking Michael for Kate’s hand in marriage because he was afraid that he was going to say no. Both Kate and William have discussed how awkward and hesitant they were to break the news to Michael and Carole. Not exactly the Middletons whooping and cheering because they finally succeeded in bagging a prince for their daughter, is it? Carole, according to printed stories, did not give her okay until William promised that they would be allowed to be traditional grandparents to any future children. Not a popular version but true nonetheless.

      • bluhare says:

        There’s also things that are said for media consumption. Carole’s smile on the morning of the engagement looked like a whole lot of whooping and cheering was going on inside. Carole didn’t know they were engaged, so she didn’t have grandmother as a condition of kate accepting. I think all that uncomfortableness schtick was a way to stop some of the Waity Katy headlines they thought would be coming, and to make Kate look like she wasn’t the one waiting; WIlliam was the one pursuing.

      • FLORC says:

        Dame Snarkweek
        I must have incorrectly stated my point for you to take that away from it.
        I meant it was expected. Not a verbal argreement.
        Didn’t Kate Nicholls state this already? That Carole took William aside at 1 point and asked his intentions? If there would be a ring or not. He assured her he would get around to it.

        I doubt the Midds were so welcoming an open to William (even when he was caught flirting with lots of other girls) without the expectation of a ring.
        Maybe towards the end the Midds pulled away after Kate was waiting for so long and then the picture of William with another girl at the bar, etc… That Michael grew defensive of his daughter and wasn’t so keen for William to stick around.
        It’s a bridge too far for me to think all the dating years there was no expectation of marriage in the Midds thoughts.

      • LAK says:

        Dame: are you referring to that risible engagement interview full of lies that was edited several times to give the right tone?!

      • Dame Snarkweek says:

        Bluhare
        Actually, stories invented for media consumption does go both ways and if I had to base my opinion on someone’s live statement on camera or an expression on someone’s face I’d have to go with the statement. Carole grinning for the press only means Carole isn’t posh enough to fake a dignified look. Laughable but not a crime or anything to read much into. But you miss the point – Carole’s conversation with William about terms happened before the public engagement announcement. The Mids knew before the palace, of course. and nothing was going to stop the waity stories regardless. William has no history of catering to or trying to thwart public opinion. Its not his thing. About 3/4 of the way through their relationship Kate’s family was becoming a bit fed up with her treatment. After so many years even the glamour of a prince begins to wane a bit. William felt Michael Middleton wouldn’t consent to the marriage so he took Kate to Africa to propose privately. This says a lot.
        Richard Kay wrote that after their last break up William had to come crawling back to Kate and that she sort of never lets him forget it. Mind you, Richard Kay is no trash tabloid rf reporter. He has strong insuide leads, is respected and lastly, doesn’t even like Kate all that much.
        FLORC
        I was responding more to hmmm than you. as for the Mids expecting a ring, of course they did. But I fail to see the big deal about that. If someone dates your daughter for years you have lots of reasons to assume they will wed. People tend to stop thinking for themselves and just start repeating what the media and other people keep repeating. Kate did not wait ten years crawling/hoping/praying for a ring. William stated often and loudly that he wanted to marry in his early thirties and not before that Kate knew that as well. That’s an understanding not the same as waiting around as long as you’re not dating other people. And for a long time William and Kate had private plans to eventually marry. Again, this makes Kate fall within her rights to expect a ring – not hope for a ring.
        I don’t see this as her being Waity Katie because she wasn’t desperately holding ohn and throwing herself at William in fron of everyone. William was giving her every reason to believe she was the official girlfriend with all the rights and privileges/expectations that come along with that. Kate was not waiting. She was enjoying herself and her position.
        The problem was that William was often spoiled, selfish and disrespectful. He took her for granted and himself too seriously. Kate should have told him to kiss her *** imo. But to each his own. Either way the waity title and stories are sexist and inaccurate. The whitewashed Will and Kate fairy tale is a joke but a lot of the Kate as cringing little expectant doormat are wrong also.
        Lastly, FLORC, I like your last theory. I’ve also hypothesized along those same lines.

      • bluhare says:

        Snarkweek,

        We can agree to disagree on Carole’s expressions and her reasons, but I find it hard to believe Carole wouldn’t know how to be “posh” as she was raised by a woman who wanted exactly that and acted accordingly. I distinctly remember William saying that he asked Michael Middleton permission to marry Kate. I also recall them saying they kept it a secret until right before they announced and Kate saying it was hard. The conversation Carole had with William was quite a while before the engagement, not as a condition of it. I was a serious fangirl back then, and I recall it all. Now, if there’s some revisionist editing now, that’s fine, but so is my memory.

      • hmmm says:

        I don’t see this as her being Waity Katie because she wasn’t desperately holding ohn and throwing herself at William in front of everyone.

        @DS

        Really? He broke up with her and she spent all that time publicly (albeit metaphorically) throwing herself at him till he took her back.

        I also think that Kate plays the doormat when it suits her. Oh, and if she knew she was the official GF with all rights and privileges, why did she try to bully her way into a royal box (can’t remember the details) ?

        @LAK,

        A “risible engagement interview”? That makes sense to me especially given how utterly controlling William is of all public utterances. I have been struck by how practiced and glib he seems in his interviews. His words cater to public opinion all the time , always in a self-serving manner.

      • FLORC says:

        Dame Snarkweek
        Thank you for clarifying for me.

        I remember whenWilliam was saying he’d wait until his 30′s for marriage. Even so, a guy can say a lot of things and not follow through. Especially when he’s often caught skipping out of his official gf. The idea of a ring sounded more like bait than a promise. Stay with me while I mess around on you and we’ll be married someday.
        And while I understand why Kate was called waity I never bought into the nickname too much. She just seemed to do exactly as girls we all know that wait around for a proposal. No back up plan, no career, no independent money. They simply wait for a guy to take care of them.

        It’s stories like that i’ve based my opinions on here. Not really the bias on both sides articles. You have to take from all sides and form an opinion by the bits of truth.
        IMO The evidence is just so overwhelming for Kate to be a person who changed all she had to about her to attract William. That put her life and development on hold to be available. There are stories here and there that William came crawly back to Kate and she moved on, but it breaks away from all reasonable conclusion to think he humbled himself and she made him regret how he treated her. Since it appears it’s still happening.

        More it seems as though William wasn’t welcomed by any other girl for marriage as an end goal. He was being chewed up in the press for all those years not proposing to Kate. As she played that angle quite well and deliberately. He hadn’t many other options and she had her long goal reached. Noth to marry a prince, but to marry well and be cared for.

  11. Edit says:

    The bulk of the expense related to necessary upkeep on a public building registered as an ancient monument (which means it needs to be renovated to very specific standards, which makes it a lot more expensive than your average home reno). The roof, the asbestos, the electrical, the plumbing, etc. Apparently it was in quite bad shape after Margaret’s death — yes, it was being used by a charity, but I doubt they were using the entire space and they would have had very different needs than for a family home.

    I think it’s very likely that things could be put off when it wasn’t a full time home — if you don’t have a lot of appliances in there, you can get away with older electrical; if you aren’t disturbing the asbestos it can stay where it is, but if you start doing any reno to floors or walls or ceilings then disturbing it means it needs to come out — which is why funds were put toward different projects over the past decade.

    Yes, some of the costs went toward putting in nurseries or redoing the kitchen, etc. But that’s just to be expected. When Harry gets married, he will get the same kind of home in the palace and in all likelihood it will require the same kind of work.

    If people think W&K should be doing more work, that’s a fair point of view. But he is in line to the throne and was always going to have a home in the palace, so I don’t understand the outrage over KP specifically. And I think it undermines legitimate criticism when it’s mixed with knowingly inaccurate information like that the Queen bought them a helicopter (when the linked story on this site said very clearly that it was a lease and was for all family members — Beatrice used it first and W&K haven’t even been inside it yet, as far as I know) or that taxpayers are paying for two kitchens (when, again, the stories very clearly say that the small “family” kitchen is being paid for privately). Likewise, except for security costs, Anmer is being paid for with private funds, not “taxpayer” money. Every year the whole British press prints these inaccurate outrage pieces when the Queen’s reports are made public — the better outlets then spend time explaining the misinformation, and then everyone forgets about it until the next year. This is nothing new — in fact, back in the 60s there was outrage about the cost of renovations to the very same apartment when Margaret moved into it.

    • LadySlippers says:

      •Edit•

      Most people aren’t interested in facts. Facts are boring, they want a *story* and want to be entertained. Truth be damned.

      • lili says:

        yep.
        there are many irrational haters on here.

      • FLORC says:

        lili
        And many who irrationally call others haters.
        It goes both ways.

        I do enjoy the facts and agree (quite often) with LadySlippers.

      • LNG says:

        I agree LadySlippers! And Edit, I have the same frustrations as you. The facts (as we know them or surmise them to be) are so often mischaracterized on these stories, often because many refuse to give them a break for anything. There is plenty to criticize about these two without stretching or misstating the truth.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •lili•

        There’s just as many silly fan-girls that irrationally adore their idol. That’s just as silly as irrational haters.

        •Florc•

        Likewise. I enjoy discussing this with you because you are so willing to look at information from a variety of angles.

        •LNG•

        Far too many people get their information from places that have a clear agenda and don’t stop to gather information from other sources or critically analyse the information being given. IMO having a broad base of knowledge is crucial.

        I’m not a huge Cambridge fan by any stretch of the imagination but they still ARE human beings that aren’t much different from most of us. And I agree, they do have lots of room for improvement engagement wise (and elsewhere) but that doesn’t mean they are horrible people either.

      • FLORC says:

        LadySlippers
        Thanks! And you’re a fountain of knowledge. Bluhare can confirm i’ve had blowouts on other Kate comment sites there were just mindless criticizing.

        I enjoy tracking the press love hate relationship with the BRF. How William opposed them. How Kate spends. It’s history in the making and public servents should be held accountable.
        And let’s not kid ourselves. The Midds are the Kardashian’s with british accents and signet rings…

        All that said my bias is known, but I do try to keep an open mind and still root for them to get their act together. It can happen!

      • bluhare says:

        Facts can be manipulated to fit the story as well.

        All of these posts are comprised of opinions. Perhaps with known facts to back them up, but most of the time are conjecture based on what a person’s read. The more they know, the better informed the opinion, but that’s all any of us are about. We don’t know anything, because no one at the palace(s) talks. That goes for everyone, fans, middle of the roaders, and non-fans.

    • Megan says:

      Edit – thanks for the info!

    • hmmm says:

      Anmer is not being completely paid for by private money. The creation of security *housing* is from the public purse, not just security. Elsewhere, at KP, they were not putting in nurseries or kitchens where there were none; they were remodelling. Kitchen and nursery already existed.

      Speaking of facts, how are taxpayers getting “good value”? Why was there no water in the place according to a palace mouthpiece even though it had been full of offices and public spaces? I imagine the taxpayers are paying for the building of THREE kitchens and PC is paying for a bit in the family kitchen. Is PC paying for fixtures, for cabinets, counters,what? Where are the facts on that?

      They are cognizant of keeping costs down? When do we get photos/a rundown of what was installed in said public purse kitchens to determine the real facts? The palace lies all the time, makes blatantly lame excuses, and we are supposed to take it all at face value? I don’t think so. I would bet my last dollar that the Dolittles will use that helicopter for personal travel, and then the facts will be fudged once again.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •hmmm•

        Often in places this large, certain utitilies are turned off because they aren’t needed or would cause them to refurbish earlier than this in order for it to meet updated codes.

        The fact this rehab needs to meet modern building codes AND historical criteria drives up the cost exponentially.

      • FLORC says:

        Hmmm
        I’m just guessing, but sometimes if there say an area doesn’t have water it means a sprinkler system in case of fire isn’t there.
        I do not like that these portions of public owned buildings that business, charities, and private families used had leaky roofs and asbestos(sp?). Shouldn’t that have been taken care of being that there was a fund paid into by taxes that existed to keep up these properties? Correct me if i’m wrong.

        And it sounds like what you want is an itemized list of renovations and what got paid for by where. I would looove that as well! But it will never happen.
        It should be standard practice within spending of public funds.

        It’s like that old joke about the whitehouse fence or toilets. $10,000 for a toilet seat. $50 for the seat and the installation and the rest goes elsewhere… But it was accounted for as spent on a toilet seat.

      • megan says:

        The $10,000 toilet seat is an urban legend. Never happened.

      • hmmm says:

        FLORC, LS,

        I see your points. And yes, I want an itemised account! LOL

        I would think, LS, that there would have to be working toilets and sinks while the charity occupied the place, no? Bottom line, why should we accept as “fact” when some palace mouthpiece says there was no water at all?

      • LadySlippers says:

        •hmmm•

        Actually no (but awesome question).

        If they turned off the water in certain places (my guess is whole floors — remember this is a 4 story apartment), they would direct people to go to the 1st floor bathrooms and/or kitchen, for example, if they needed water. Many offices buildings don’t have the same type of plumbing a residence requires so they can and do fudge with stuff.

        A lot of older buildings ‘make do’ with what they have available because the cost to do any refurbishments are simply too steep. My guess is they had a rough estimate of which apartments in KP would be given to both William and Harry as BP is much shabbier and more importantly, full.

        An itemised tally isn’t a bad idea. I’ve *seen* first hand what the US govt does to fleece American citizens and ouch! But most of these run-ups have very little to do with the BRF themselves — it’s more to do with what the contractors/construction companies encountered once they got knee deep in the renovation and the criteria and standards demanded by others while refurbishing.

      • bluhare says:

        The palace spokesperson said there was no running water in their apartment.

        http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-27955689

        That would mean there were no toilets nor sinks. The person did not say “no running water on floor 3″. “A spokeswoman said there had previously been no running water and the couple had paid for all internal furnishings.” He even lied about who paid for the furnishings, as William and Kate have not paid for all internal furnishings.

      • hmmm says:

        @LS

        Okay, you are saying that the palace mouthpiece wasn’t totally telling the truth about there being NO water. At the very least, there was water on the first floor? And at the most the water had been shut off to the other 3 floors. So, it’s not like there was NO water. Sounds like it was available but not used. So, basically the palace mouthpiece LIED.

      • FLORC says:

        megan
        True or not I stated it was a joke. And told it to highlight how a price can be quoted and spent, but not all goes to the actual product. Some goes to the lining of pockets and it’s still accounted for.
        It’s common practice and happens every day.

        Hope this posts. I have a loads of comments not making the cut today.

      • hmmm says:

        FLORC

        My comments suddenly are not making it through, too.

        bluhare,

        As I tried to post before, yeah, I remember the palace mouthpiece stating that there was NO water. Period. And they did lie about who paid for the furnishings.

      • LadySlippers says:

        Sorry for any miscommunication but I was not trying to contradict a palace spokesperson. I thought they had water in parts of the apartment and had not realised they had no water whatsoever.

        What I was trying to state was that it was possible that the charity had made some kind of accommodations for the lack of water which is often what happens, in order to ‘make-do’ in less than desirable circumstances. Using the ‘for example’ was meant to show a possibility but not what had actually happened.

        Again, sorry for the confusion.

      • bluhare says:

        We *should* contradict the palace spokesperson because it’s ludicrous to think that the charity that runs the historical buildings was in there with no running water. Especially a charity that had done some renovation in its space.

        If the water was turned off after they moved out, that’s obfuscation to the nth degree by that spokesperson to make it sound William and Kate would have had to take their laundry out to the fountains and do it there.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        bluehare,

        It is off-topic but that last sentence of ours reminded me of my grandmother’s childhood. She grew up on a farm where they did not have electricity or running water. On washing days they had to pump well-water, heat it and then whip out the washboards. She’s an old lady (she turns 96 in August) but it really shows the amazing strides in technology for the last century. She grew up in an environment where running water, telephones and automobiles where rare and a thing of wonder and fascination for her and her sister. Now, even her great-grandchildren has mobile phones and go on holidays on the other side of the globe. I just think that it is amazing that she has witnessed an extraordinary technological revolution first-hand.

      • bluhare says:

        AH, my nana’s house didn’t have an indoor bathroom, and only had a kitchen sink. I remember Saturday night baths in a steel tub in front of the fire! And chamber pots.

        And, no, I’m not THAT old. :)

      • hmmm says:

        @bluhare,

        I’m definitely old! LOL. I was born into something similar in a small village in the Midlands- no hot running water, no bathroom (steel tub for bathing) no fridge- only pantry, granite sink in kitchen, outdoor toilet (chamber pots indoors), no central heating (coal burning fireplaces), no tv, no telephone, no car, and chickens in the tiny cement back yard. Life was good.

      • bluhare says:

        hmmm, not so far off then eh? Growing up we didn’t have central heating, although we did have plumbing. No fridge; just a pantry. And I remember my mother doing washing on Mondays in the kitchen sink with her wrangle. And buying our first telly.

        And scraping ice off the inside of the windows in the winter. We lived in Solihull/Shirley for a while if that’s close to you.

        When my nephews were smaller, I’d tell them stories about how when we were young we had to actually get up and CROSS THE ROOM to change the channel on the TV! Their eyes would boggle. :)

      • LAK says:

        bluhare: “we had to actually get up and CROSS THE ROOM to change the channel on the TV!” LOL.

      • FLORC says:

        Lol Bluhare!
        All I’ve got for stories like that is “It took 2 minutes to connect to the internet and 10 minutes to load a single webpage!!!”
        Your stories clearly win. I’ll pull i out next scary campfire I go to.

  12. Francis says:

    William and Kate are hopeless. He keeps moving the goal line on when he wants to be an actual full fledge working Royal, now he’s going back to a job he earlier quit. He doesn’t like being at KP. Kate does very little in the way of royal duties. These two are spending huge amounts of money on homes they may or may not live in part time?
    For all the employed PR staff and press special handling William and Kate get, they sure are losing the PR War this summer.
    I really detest them as royals, they just seem to want it THEIR way Only and be damn with what the Palace handlers or public might want. I have always believed William is a loose cannon who is wants to slowly implode the future Monarchy. I just don’t believe he wants the role. I think when Charles goes, William will finally tell the truth, that He doesn’t want it.
    Kate is hopeless, she should just walk around with Baby George all the time, it might help her,,because on her own there just doesn’t seem to much there.

  13. The Original Mia says:

    Ridiculous excess for a family that doesn’t work and won’t be living in the place full time. 2 kitchens? Really? George has tongs shi’a own kitchen for bottles and baby food. Really? High end appliances. $18K stove? My $700 one works just fine and makes some excellent meals and desserts.

    • Megan says:

      I just bought that same Wolf stove because I love to cook. It’s frickin’ awesome. The precision of the heating is unreal.

      That said, Wolf appliances are considerably less expensive in the US. My stove was nowhere near $18k.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        That stove sound awesome – I love to cook as well but can’t really afford the kind of appliances that I would love to have – like a KitchenAid machine, etc. I live in a small one-bedroom apartment, but was really lucky to get one that has a comparatively large kitchen with 2 tabletops and room to work. Of course, there are no kitchendrawers but I managed to set up a workable system with the help of IKEA.

  14. Switch says:

    It completely boggles my mind when I consider the magnitude of FREE perks these two receive! They live their lives in extreme luxury –palaces, drivers, security, staff, helicopters, designer clothing, extravagant vacations and luxurious royal tours/vacations. For their lifestyle they pay for nothing. They even get to go to museums, play polo, attend sporting events, etc. all under the royal umbrella. Kate stands there grinning from ear to ear with a manic look on her face and can’t manage to find her underwear drawer. My impression of royalty has deminished exceptionally. PW and DoC are in it for themselves to reap the benefits of their position and selfishly lead the lifestyle they desire while barely showing any genuine compassion for people who are struggling day to day. Such a disappoinent in my eyes.

    • wolfpup says:

      I haven’t seen the exact science of the situation, as you’ve have put it together here. Now, I have a better understanding of why Kate wanted her position, so desperately. It does seem as though she went deep enough into it, to love him, in her own doubly-devoted way. Sometimes I wonder if Will has a heart, even to love her. And if it wasn’t Jecca, will there be someone else down the road, that he has a feeling of passion for? I don’t see any passion for Kate, or George. Just a comfortableness that is almost like taking them for granted; at for least Kate.

      • FLORC says:

        Wolfpup. It’s a strong point.
        Kate has proven she will stay by William no matter what. And William doesn’t really make time to be a husband and father even with his light schedule.
        We know this from Kate letting it slip that William was barely around for the bulk or Georges life so far. Love or prop or whatever they are to eachother William doesn’t know how good he has it with Kate. She’s about the only woman who can put up with him.

      • littlestar says:

        Completely agree, Florc. As much as we have snarked on Kate for being so waity for William, she really is the only woman who will put up with him.

        And to add – how flipping sad that he barely spends any time with his son :( . He’s missing out on so much, especially in the first year! George is likely going to grow up to resent Will’s lazy useless entitled *ss.

      • FLORC says:

        George is the 1 who suffers here. he’s given so much! Hopefully that will offset his absent father. And we don’t know how Kate acts when William is gone. Yes she shops a lot and have beauty upkeep that can last all day for a few days, but after that is she sad? Distant? Most people know when William is away and caught at pubs or vacations instead of working he’s got company. I hav no doubt Kate knows this. Remeber the pregnancy announcement had William returning from a hunting trip with Pelly? A child can pick up on a parent faking happy very easily.

        If William wants better for his family and Child(ren) he should keep that in mind.

      • AM says:

        As time goes on, the more I think that the 10 years of waiting was less about being sure the relationship would last than testing Kate to see if she would stay through anything.

      • hmmm says:

        I think that Waity is a willing public convenience for Willy.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •wolfpup•

        I’m going to play devil’s advocate again.

        Right now you’re operating on the assumption that Kate did indeed, just wait for the ring. However, I’d take some of that ‘story line’ with a grain of salt. Because Richard Kay seem to lay the blame at William’s door rather than Kate’s. That’s VERY interesting as RK is not a known Kate fan. Plus, the British press likes to cling to storylines because it sells (they even use the same story over decades just inserting different people). This story might be just that — a story with very little truth to it.

        Now with that said, I’m not saying the established story is either totally false OR totally true. All I’m saying is it’s important to stay a bit objective because things are rarely what they seem.

      • hmmm says:

        @LS

        If Kate did not wait for the ring, then what is the story according to Richard Kay and William’s fault in this? You don’t mention that.

        Frankly, you don’t need a reporter to see that she waited for the ring and put up with everything. Moreover, she still puts up with everything. I certainly don’t see the flaw in that observation, which, like I said, doesn’t need an official reporter to figure out.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •hmmm•

        By saying all she did is wait, it nullifies the idea that she genuinely might be in love with William. And he with her. People do all kinds of illogical things for love. No one is immune from that. In many recent phone hacking articles, the messages from both sides are nauseatingly cute and lovey dovey. Lol. You know, typical of people in love. But that’s doesn’t fall in line with the ‘Kate puts up with anything from William’ story.

        And a lot of couples make allowances for one another. For example, we honestly don’t have a tally sheet of how many days they are together and apart. But that doesn’t stop people from thinking they are never together.

        People also think neither Kate nor William interact with George and I saw zero evidence of that. George is clearly comfortable with both parents and that comes about because he spends time with them. Kids aren’t good at acting comfortable with people if they don’t want to.

        Again, I don’t condone the fact that Kate didn’t have a proper job prior to marriage or the fact both aren’t each steadily building up their royal engagement numbers to a reasonable 300-400 a year. But that’s a separate issue from what people needlessly criticise them for.

      • wolfpup says:

        You are right LS, I am assuming she was/is desperate.

      • bluhare says:

        It doesn’t nullify anything, LS. It could also mean she loved him so much she was willing to wait til the end of time.

        I’m of the opinion they do have a good relationship and spend time with their child, but I still think she put her life on hold to wait for him too.

      • wolfpup says:

        LS,it is late enough on this post that I want to be frank with you. Your comments to me often feel patronizing; in this particular case, explaining simple logic, and telling me how research is done. You also assume that I have not done any reading about the royal family, and know nothing about Richard Kay.

        I know that you have two teenage children, I have three children in their 30′s and one who is only 21. I also have 3 university degrees, and got an A in logic, and was a research assistant, before being doing research myself. I am also clear about when I’m surmising, and when I am working off facts. When people use words like “seem”, or” wonder”, that should indicate that one is being subjective. Statements, like you often make, read objective, although we both know that is not always the case. Please treat me with corresponding respect. Thanks!

        I also want to mention that I often really enjoy your posts – you are upbeat, and that always feels good!

      • FLORC says:

        LadySlippers
        I’m stating from 1st hand knowledge babies are all different and some cry around their parents, loe strangers, and love, hate regardless of how much time they spend with them.

        I’ve held babies that cry with their mothers and love me. Also babies that love their mothers and love me. Amount of time is a poor judge for how a baby reacts around people.
        I’m not saying Kate isn’t around George. I’m saying you can’t make that call based on a few outings and carefully chosen pictures.

        Also basing this on working in a women’s care physicians office.

      • bluhare says:

        wolfpup, I have felt the same way at times. I’ve often wondered if it was me feeling sensitive so it’s nice to have validation that either (1) I’m not sensitive, or (2) you are too!

        LS, this isn’t a slag on you. You read a lot, you know a lot, and you want to impart it. But sometimes it comes off as very lectury to me and has certainly stopped me from trying to debate a point with you, which I assume is something you don’t want.

      • Ayre says:

        Hi ladies! After feeding a roomful of shouty soccer fans parked on my couch, I’ve just sat down to enjoy my turkey on sourdough sandwich and see what the Cambridges are up to.

        Now I know I’m no angel when it comes to speaking level-headedly in these threads, but to accuse LadySlippers of being patronizing is, at the very least, unfair. SO unfair that I’m feeling a little “you can’t be serious!”

        She offers measured, informed remarks and is unfailingly polite and good-humored. I don’t like the Cambridges, and I don’t think there are many people on here who do. But anytime someone offers an opinion that’s not wholly negative they’re practically shown the door. Accusing a very mellow commenter of being disrespectful or dismissive is too much. We don’t all enjoy condemning these people for their every move. Leave a little room for those of us who want to criticize them without always assuming the worst.

        **edited to add: OFFSIDES! (I figured if I was going to sound like a referee I might as well get some football lingo in there)

      • bluhare says:

        How we feel is how we feel, Ayr. Wolfpup said it and I agreed with her as I didn’t think it fair to leave her twisting in the wind alone. I’ve also felt the same for quite some time but did not say anything. We also didn’t say she was impolite or discourteous as you just implied, and I agree that she’s mild mannered and polite, but IMO there can be some lectures and patronization. I’ve felt it myself.

        You disagree. Your prerogative. But allow us ours.

      • Ayre says:

        Yes! Not at all saying you aren’t entitled to your opinion. I love to read what you write, bluhare, as I am more of a lurker. I just felt I should jump in to say that some of the non-commenting community find the criticism repetitive and almost conspiracy-esque. But you should probably disregard me at this point, because I believe I might be a little tipsy. World Cup Fever! I do really love to read these threads, hope I don’t sound harsh.

        P.S. I think I have a crush on the Brazilian goalie Julio Cesar. Can we please start a thread with some mean things about his beautiful wife? *just kidding*

      • wolfpup says:

        My heart is full of IMO and XOXOX for you Lady Slippers. Please, let’s be friends. bluhare, you really know how to be a champ! (I’m so devoted!)

    • hmmm says:

      LS

      That has to be an epic love given the way William was reported to treat her and from what we’ve seen in pictures. She sounds more like a doormat if truth be told. Fact is, no one knows for sure but behaviour tells you everything.

      IIRC, the hacking took place way back in the dark ages, exposed in 2006. A lot has changed 8 years later so I don’t see how that measure of their love is relevant now. Their behaviour speaks otherwise, in many many ways. You would have to be a fantasist to think otherwise, IMO.

      • Xantha says:

        I agree hmmm. And are we gonna pretend they didn’t have a big public breakup in 2007? Cause that’s a fact. And common sense would indicate that there had to have been issues sometime in 2006 since the breakup took place in early 2007.

      • LAK says:

        Hmmm/Xantha: Let’s not forget William’s reaction to that particular breakup where he jumped up on the bar of a club and telling everyone and anyone that he was FREE!!!

    • Ayre says:

      oops

  15. Word Girl says:

    You say you wanted a second family kitchen, Kate ? Oh, why not? Just stop by the local ‘Tax Payers R Us to get the funding. ;)

  16. Amanda says:

    My guess is the main kitchen is a restaurant grade “professional” kitchen used for cooking for large parties and guests. I don’t blame them for wanting a kitchen they can go into in their pajamas and pour some coffee without running into staff.

  17. bettyrose says:

    I think it’s pretty clear that THIS is what she waited for all those years: an unlimited budget to endlessly remodel her palaces. C’mon, in a secret fantasy world where no one goes hungry while we spend lavishly, how awesome does that sentence sound?

    • wolfpup says:

      The fantasy would be better if we could all spend lavishly.

      • bettyrose says:

        Say it with me: “My full time job is overseeing the remodeling of my palaces.”

        I’m not excusing her, just saying that I FINALLY get what she wanted from all this. Gawd, honestly that phrase just rolls of my tongue, fake accent and all. I think I’ll say it once a day from now on.

      • Ayre says:

        I want a business card with that phrase engraved on it.

  18. murphy says:

    The most offensive part is that William wouldn’t pay for it himself. He has PLENTY of money, inherited from Diana and the Queen Mother.
    I’m not much younger than him (I’m 30) and my Dad doesn’t pay for anything for me, and especially not for my spouse.

    • wolfpup says:

      William can’t afford to remodel. He has 15 million, but his father is worth 200 million. And besides, it looks better that Charles and granny paid for it; not the taxpayers. Keep the taxpayers happy, try to squeeze out bread, and a few circuses (royal weddings et.al.), and keep them happy. So easy!

      • megan says:

        How Charlies spends his private wealth is his business. If he wants to spend money on his kids, so be it. He certainly has the means.

      • murphy says:

        If the first kitchen was 170K and the second kitchen was smaller, he should have been able to afford the second kitchen. All I’m talking about is the second kitchen–not the entire rennovation.

      • megan says:

        The Cambridges are not entitled to tax payer money for personal effects, so there was never any question that decorating would be paid for privately.

      • bluhare says:

        megan, there is a question in my mind now. IF these are state or official apartments, will Charles get a tax write off? Does anyone familiar with British tax code know? If he can, then you can make the argument that taxpayers will subsidise their furniture too because Charles isn’t paying tax on all of his contribution.

      • FLORC says:

        Megan
        Are you saying that there’s no way Will and Kate can find access to those funds for their personal preferences? That the Queen could take some and move it around to suit the Cambridges? Or that Charles is always and only using his private money for all his expenses including what he spends on his son and daughter in law?

        I’m not meaning to insult. Only to say that is a very naive way of approaching this. That what you’re told is the truth at face value.
        If that was the case we would have true and accurate itemized lists from many officials.

      • hmmm says:

        bluhare,

        Great point! Indeed, then it all would have been subsidised by the taxpayers. Perhaps that’s why Charles is paying for it rather than his son so that he can write it off at the end of the tax year.

      • Megan says:

        FLORC – Like you, I have no idea how Charles, the queen and the Cambridges mange their money. I believe that is/was the job of the Westminster Committee. There was a lot of news when they decided to investigate the queen, but I don’t recall ever hearing of anything scandalous flowing from that investigation.

      • FLORC says:

        Megan
        There are lots of points where information becomes scandalous. And then it vanishes. This isn’t unique to the Monarchy. It’s many organizations that feel above the fray.
        We only find out this information so many years later it doesn’t matter as much if we ever find out.

        If the monarchy didn’t want this info out it’s not getting out. Maybe you’re naive or maybe i’m jaded, but I don’t trust self policing (because they are) organizations at face value.

  19. vava says:

    I’m loving that photo of Kate, with the gnarly look on her face. LOL.

  20. Mixtape says:

    I live in San Francisco and, sadly, these costs are not outrageous to me, especially for a 22-room property that required asbestos abatement. As for the “three kitchens,” that’s outrageous. However, I suspect “George’s Kitchen” was simply upgraded from the bottle-warming station it was rumored to be to the more accurate description of “Family Kitchen,” and I think that’s fine for such a large house. They can keep their personal food separate from that reserved for large events, and if the main kitchen is bustling with people preparing for such events, they have a place to make their own meals without getting in the way.

  21. Chris says:

    Queen buys William and Kate an £8 million helicopter? That isn’t even true.

    • FLORC says:

      She leased the use of 1 for a year. Consider fuel, upkeep, and salaries for pilots, mechanics, and security involving it… It could easily be millions of pounds over a years time. I think that’s the point. Or they are upgrading an existing helicopter and just leasing the use of the pilot’s service. I’m just brainstorming.
      What the DM quotes is almost guaranteed to be a factual number, but does not include the bulk of cost.

      Like when I tell my husband I went shopping. I bought a pair of jeans on sale and it only cost $30. I skate around the rest of my purchases that are crammed into my purse while I carry in my 1 bag with 1 pair of jeans and receit in it. What he doesn’t know won’t cause me grief.

      • hmmm says:

        From what I’ve read recently (but I don’t have a link for it right now) , the helicopter is brand new.

      • Chris says:

        It’s to be used by the whole family, not just William and Kate. The media put them in the headline as they are the two who get attention and sell papers.

        The hate for those two on here is truly bizarre. Some of the stuff being thrown about bears no resemblance to reality at all. It’s like people have created two characters in their heads and are writing about them as if they are actual people.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •Chris•

        Hello again! 😊

        I don’t think anyone is above criticism but there are too many people that layer on ‘hate’ rather than look at it from a different angle. Or even search for the truth.

        It’s very depressing.

      • hmmm says:

        @Chris

        “Hate” is such an easy word to bandy about. Can you choose another?

        As for reality? Whose?

        The palace mouthpieces dissemble. The Cambridges lie (eg., we are not at the Paralympics because we need to prepare for our tour while we laze about in the sun in France). It’s a fact! There is no truth here, just supposition and opinions based on observation. The truth? Who can handle the truth? Heh.

  22. P.J. says:

    I guess they needed a private kitchen for, you know, all that eating and home cooking Kate does 😂

    God. Diana would be rolling over in her grave. I have always believed that, had she still been living, neither Harry or William would have gotten romantically involved with the women they’ve chosen and Williliam certainly would not be pulling this lazy, entitled, non-working, over spending. petulant prince crap that he’s gotten away with all his adult life! And I have also never, ever thought that she would have approved of Kate, much less “adored” her as so many royal mouthpieces would like everyone to believe.

    Diana wasn’t a perfect person but she was nothing if not incredibly empathetic to the suffering & plights of those in need and super intuitive. I firmly believe that she would have immediately seen through all of the Middletons and their aspirations from day 1. Let’s hope Harry eventually settles down with a kind, level headed, un-spoiled, philanthropic girl with a heart for charity like himself to balance things out. Unfortunately, the way things are looking…

    • Chris says:

      Memories of Diana are always so different from the reality. She went through public money like it was hers (check out the criticism of her clothe spending from the 80′s), she did very few engagements compared to people like Princess Anne, she spent loads of time on holiday, usually with a variety of attached or married men, and left £20 million in her will, and non to charity. She wasn’t exactly the world’s most charitable and empathetic woman, so if all the stuff you say about William and Kate is true (in my opinion it isn’t), then she probably would have approved.

      • FLORC says:

        Chris
        Diana’s will was taken over and changed after her death.
        She left some to William, Slightly more to Harry, and included her godchildren among other things. Then her Will was looked over…. Help me senior Royaloonies with the name… And then William and Harry got the bulk with Godchildren cut out.

        And Diana could shop like a pro and loved her status and money. She was also Queen B^*$#, but still was empathetic and took on causes no one ese would at the time. And while she didn’t top sourfaced Princess Anne for events her impact was great and she did hundreds of events per year.

        And I have to agree that Hell would freeze over before Diana would let Kate get into William. The Middletons have earned there place in the world, but Diana was Lady Spencer and she was quite proud of making people aware of it. I doubt William would have been with a girl without a title. Diana could be quite scrappy when she didn’t approve of someone.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •Florc•

        Key thing about titles, ‘Lady Spencer’ is a title used by the current or dowager Countess Spencer only. Since Diana was a daughter of the 8th Earl Spencer, she needs her name after the Lady and should not be addressed as Lady Spencer.

        To add to what you’ve already said Florc, the executors of Diana’s will were able to change the will (fairly extensively too) three months after Diana died. My guess is, even if she had left funds to charities, that would have been nixed due to how much was changed anyway. Besides, she had literally just cleaned her closet donating *millions* to charity. Diana wasn’t a slouch in that department.

        As for Diana and Kate — I am not 100% sold that Diana would have hated Kate. I DO think William wouldn’t have wobbled as much regarding her or anything else. Diana would have not tolerated his ‘dilly-dallying’ and would have wanted him to man up long before he does now.

      • P.J. says:

        @Chris: My memories of the late Diana are not at all skewed or “different from reality” as you’ve declared. I was very much alive and well durning her marriage to Charles and the years after their divorce. As I said in my original post, the woman was far from perfect-none of us are-but that does not mean that she wasn’t also all of those positive things that are constantly attributed to her and were captured on paper, in the media and from countless first hand accounts. Have you ever listened to the stories of people who she visited with in the hospital or across the globe? Their reports are always the same: She held their hands, gave long hugs-this was particularly remarkable during the AIDS Crisis when so many were terrified that the illness was transmittible via touch or air-stayed and talked with them one on one (sometimes for hours) and was an incredible listening ear. This warmth and empathy was a natural trait that she possessed and had nothing to do with the job title that came with crown or who she married. (See proof in the Duchess of Cambridge.) Harry also has it. Ever seen him working with charities for animals or kids? It’s wonderful 😊

        @Florc: As far as her spending, Diana came into the Royal family with millions of her own money from her inheritance, unlike Kate who also probably should have as well but is all too happy to shop on Charles dime (St. James Palace’s own admission) despite her family being millionaires.

        And for anyone who inexplicably attempt’s to compare Diana’s work ethic to that of the incomparable Princess Anne: Princess Anne had ALWAYS been the hardest working royal in the family since she reached adulthood, often making far more appearances than the Queen herself. She may be rough around the edges and a bit cold, but the woman recognizes and LOVES the duty that comes along with her position 👌 Too bad her eldest nephew doesn’t feel the same…

      • Chris says:

        @ P.J She didn’t have loads of money when she entered in to the royal family. Spencers, like all aristocratic families, were property rich but cash poor.

        I liked Diana but she really didn’t work that hard, and at least one prominent AIDS charities had virtually cut ties with her by the end of her life because she was such a liability.

        And selling your dresses and donating the money to charity is not the same as giving your own vast wealth to charity.

        You love Harry, hate William, we get it, but don’t make things up.

      • hmmm says:

        @Chris,

        I largely agree with @PJ and I think you are making stuff up. She “really didn’t work that hard”? Surely you jest. Diana was a hard worker, and like PJ, I was there to watch it unfold. I remember how remarkable it was that she dared get close to those with AIDS, almost unheard of in those days. She was so different from what had gone before in the RF and the public tapped into that. Regardless of the rest of her character, her causes were just and right and passionately felt.

        As for the rest of your argument….seriously? That’s all you’ve got?

      • LadySlippers says:

        •PJ•

        •Chris• is correct. Diana did have money but it certainly wasn’t millions and she didn’t spend it on business expenses either (which her wardrobe and residences would be). For instance, her mother bought her flat prior to marriage and Diana still needed roommates to afford the place. As people in her family died, I’m sure she came into trust money too…but that’s not all at once.

        •Chris•

        The liability issue you mention, as far as I recall, was more because she was all over the place and not sure how ‘public’ she wanted her life. Not that the charities themselves were dropping her. Diana was a huge draw for people, and many charities were heartbroken when she cut ties with them.

        I see your point with giving charity personal funds, however, I think she was trying to give her sons (especially Harry) some financial freedom. It’s expensive being royal. I see that as terribly pragmatic. Plus, she wasn’t obligated to donate any of her clothing at all. Personally, I think it’s a tad harsh to say otherwise whereas I might has been a tad too generous.

        Also, she expected her 17 godchildren to be better taken care of and it’s a shame they weren’t.

        As for your last quip, was that directed at me? I hope I don’t come across as a William hater. Constructive critic? Absolutely. Hater? I hope not.

        I will willing admit I tend to have a soft spot for Harry because he does appear to have Diana’s very human touch. I honestly think William’s gift lie elsewhere and probably aren’t as readily seen as Harry’s.

      • Megan says:

        Chris – thanks for calling out the revisionist history on Diana.

        I like remembering the best of Diana, but I have not forgotten that she was far from perfect.

      • Megan says:

        So here is an interesting site. Diana is thought to have spent $2 million on fashion in 13 years. That comes out to $153,000 per year. Which is about 3.5X more than Kate spends.

        Just saying …
        http://www.thenaturalsapphirecompany.com/education/sapphires-as-heirlooms/the-legacy-of-princess-diana/

      • bluhare says:

        Megan, we all know Diana was a clotheshorse and spent a fortune on clothes. She did a lot of engagements during those years as well as that is when she was married to Charles and Princess of Wales, but I’m too lazy to go look them up. It doesn’t even compare to Kate who I think we can all agree does MUCH less in terms of official engagements than Diana did. We may even be able to agree that Kate does much less in terms of charity as well, so where is the comparison?

        If you’d like to take Kate’s clothing purchases, Diana’s, and adjust them for inflation and number of engagements then you’d have something to compare. Diana might well outspend Kate based on that as well, but at least it would be a fair comparison.

      • Megan says:

        Bluhare – if Diana’s spending is adjusted for inflation from 1994, it comes to about $250,000 per year. If you reverse adjust Kate’s spending to 1994, it comes to about $25,000 per year.

        I think Diana was an enormously important public figure whose work to build AIDS awareness (and compassion) as well as bring the issue of landmines to the attention of the world is simply priceless.

        Her wardrobe, however, came at a huge price.

      • hmmm says:

        That comparison makes no sense. Diana’s adjusted for inflation, and Kate’s removes the inflation and adjusted for what years. How is this a fair comparison? It’s confusing.

        Also, there is no adjustment for the number of their respective engagements, a significant factor.

      • bluhare says:

        Hi megan,

        Whichever way you choose to go . . . either inflating for Diana or conflating for Kate, you still have to balance it out against the number of engagements that the clothes were purchased for if we’re looking at this as a value for money thing. Most of their expenditures, at least those publicized, are for work. Given that Diana worked a lot more than Kate she definitely would need more clothes. So again, the parameters need to be set. Inflate Diana’s to today’s prices and divide by the number of engagements. Divide Kate’s by engagements. Then there’s a more even handed comparison.

      • FLORC says:

        LadySlippers
        Sorry my last reply to you didn’t post. My guess is because I added a link.
        It was to a story from a former employer of Diana’s. She was young and a nanny for a family.
        The family assumed Diana wasn’t terribly wealthy to take a job as a nanny. Diana heard this and left her bank book out in the open of the woman’s house. On a page that had her account balance, title of “Lady” and the bank was a well known bank for large funds where the wealthy go to bank.
        That’s why I assumed “Lady”.

    • caitlin says:

      Bravo, PJ!! I especially liked your remarks about Diana’s genuinity and work ethic — not just “hamming it” for the benefit of the cameras, she was the real McCoy when it came down to it.

      Kate reminds me of the saying “all that glitters is not gold” — look beneath the facade and scratch beneath the surface (i.e. maniacal smile, veneers, hair extensions, expensive clothes) and there is very little substance there. Sure Diana’s wardrobe was worth a fortune, but her personal qualities and worth ethic would still shine through if she was dressed in rags. No, she was not perfect and a candidate for sainthood, but she was genuine and not a “try hard”.

      • hmmm says:

        Agreed, though I don’t think Waity is much of a try-hard. She does the bare minimum, in my estimation. But she really, really, really does try hard to be an upper class WAG.

      • Francis says:

        Lady slippers, Diana used her OWN money to buy that flat , she was left an inheritance from her grandmother ,who was an heiress,, that is how Diana purchased her flat in Colhuerne Court.

        Diana DId NOt NEED roommates to afford the flat, She OWNED it outright. They paid HER Rent. It was a smart business move.
        Diana was told she could only live in the city if she took roommates. Her father did not wanting her living in the city alone, roommates were the only way, her elders would allow her.

        The Spencer’s were not cash poor at all. the Earl was worth Millions. Diana’s family was loaded. Her father inherited an Estate worth Millions.
        It was said Diana was one of the few ladies who entered the Palaces with Pr. Charles and wasn’t impressed, because Althorp was as big as some of the palaces!

    • Megan says:

      Hmmm … During the period in question, Diana averaged $153,000 per year on clothes. If we adjust that to today’s dollars, it would $250,000 per year.

      Conversely, if take Kate’s $45,000 (which I believe is what she is reported to have spent on clothes last year) and adjusted that to 1994 dollars, it would have been about $25,000 per year.

      Yes, Diana did lots of public engagements, but she was a big spender, too.

      • Francis says:

        Diana was Princess of Wales, She had access to more money since she was married to the Prince of Wales.
        William is the heir to the heir, Kate is not on the level Diana was.
        If William and Kate worked hard, the press would have more to talk about than their vacations and their spending.

      • bluhare says:

        I think your figure is wildly understated, megan. Kate spent £38,000 on the Australia/New Zealand tour alone.

      • bluhare says:

        Also, Kate was pregnant and not particularly working last year, so those numbers are skewed.

      • LAK says:

        Using your own figures, but aking no of engagements into consideration, Kate still comes out the bigger spender.

        first year of Diana as a royal = 200 engagements at $250K = $1250 worth of clothing per outing.

        Kate’s NZ/Auz tour = 19 engagements at £38K (*fx1.6 aprox $60K) = $3157 worth of clothing per outing

      • AM says:

        Not to mention Diana’s early years were in 80s excess, while Kate’s are in a period of austerity.

      • Megan says:

        80′s were heady economic times in the US, but not in the UK. That was a turbulent period of highs and lows driven by high unemployment, high inflation, a housing bubble and an early 90′s recession.

        There were riots about the economy in the UK in the early 80′s. A bit before Di marry PC, but indicative of the mood in the UK.

      • AM says:

        Thanks, Megan. My understanding had always been that part of the nation celebrating the extravagance of Charles and Diana’s wedding was the emergence from bad economic times.

  23. hmmm says:

    What if the “family” kitchen is one for the Midds and their newly renovated wing of 1A in KP?

    • FLORC says:

      Lol hmmm!
      You know what gets me…
      Instead of upgrading the KP apartment for Carole to settle in with Kate and help her after George was born and William was away the Midds got an upgraded home. Security with 2 flyover perimeter checks a day aside. The midds new estate got a new wing and side house. House for security and wing for George and Kate. As well as upgraded kitchen. New windows, doors as well for bomb proofing. Cost of renovations what almost entirely on taxpayers and was just over a million pounds reported.
      I think the true value of money is lost on most of the people involved here. The money exists so don’t question where it comes from.

      • Switch says:

        Hmmm and FLORC. I agree that there are special provisions being made in KP to support the Middleton family both now and “for years to come”. It would have been an appropriate choice to keep PG on royal property but now the whole Middleton family seems to be cashing in and riding the royal wave.

    • hmmm says:

      @LS,
      How is this an anti-Midd statement? Geez. It’s speculation, especially given the close ties that the Midds have to the Cambridges.

      QEII and Parliament would never agree to what you’ve suggested. Sorry. Stuff like that would not be something either William or Kate could offer — even if they wanted to.

      Re: the Midds wing- At this point I would really like some proof of your assertion. I have never seen this stated anywhere so far but would terribly interested in evidence to that effect.

      • Megan says:

        Hmmm – the Middletons have “close ties” to the Cambridges because they are Kate’s parents. I think the fact that they are close to Kate and William is, you know, normal.

      • bluhare says:

        Megan, it is not “normal” in terms of the royals. Any other inlaws have stayed in the background and absolutely nothing has been said about their relationships with the RF. Plenty has been written about the Middleton’s aspirations, especially at first. Perhaps it was anticipated based on prevailing opinion at the time, I don’t know, but they certainly have been treated differently than other in laws. And a trial balloon was floated way back when about rooms for Carole at KP and it was shot down.

  24. Tang says:

    I get a hint that Kate is kind of a demanding woman.

  25. Jocelyn says:

    The sour look on Kate’s face looks so unlikeable in that photo. She never seems to be genuinely smiling unless she’s with Prince George. Kate & William sure like spending money. I can’t really fault them for that. They are royals but my huge problem with them is that they don’t do nearly enough work and the press made a huge deal about them being normal people.

  26. TX says:

    Well, enjoy that UK taxpayers! Every government spends money in needless ways, of course. But I am so glad the US does not have a monarchy to support on top of it all. Why anyone in a modern country would be ok with having a monarchy boggles my mind.

    • megan says:

      England isn’t a modern country. Its 1,087 years old and steeped in tradition.

    • Maple Goodness says:

      TX – Totally agree with you! England, although steeped in tradition is a first world country and exists in the modern world. There is no reason for the monarchy as it is a burden on taxpayers. This money should be directed back to the public for social programs, education and those that need it most. It is disturbing to me that these historic and grand buildings are renovated solely for the monarchy to live in. Renovations that cost millions of dollars, solely for these people. These buildings should be renovated and open for the public usage and be sites for public programs and residences. I can’t stand this royalty/superiority garbage, people ‘ordained’ to have so much and don’t work for it while the poor and homeless is on the increase in England. The monarchy needs to be dissolved.

      • LadySlippers says:

        •Maple Goodness•

        Actually it does just that.

        Only *15%* of the Crown Estates goes to support the British Royal Family, the rest is diverted elsewhere.

        Plus, almost all the first world countries have hidden oligarchies that have more power than they should. All members of a constitutional monarchy have to account for their choices yet these oligarchs do not. And they cost us, the citizens, way more than any government or royal because all they’re concerned is lining their pockets. At our expense.

      • Maple Goodness says:

        I totally agree about the oligarchies. They are horrendous. They commit all sorts of unethical acts and behaviours. There are far more oligarchies and they are much less accountable, more widely destructive and powerful than the monarchy.

        As far as the monarchy is concerned, 15% is still 15% too much. There should be no monarchy. The historic buildings that are requiring millions in renovations should be renovated but occupied and used by the public or be the site for social programs. To renovate these buildings for the sole use of the monarchy is atrocious.

      • Megan says:

        The crown generates more than three quarters of a billon dollars a year in tourist income and costs Brits 81 cents per year. Doesn’t strike me as a bad deal …

        http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2013/07/is-the-british-royal-family-worth-the-money/278052/

      • Megan says:

        Maple Goodness – would you object to a $4 million tab to abate asbestos in the White House private residence? Would you expect the Obama’s to let tours into their daughters’ bedroom because taxpayers paid for the abatement?

      • bluhare says:

        I don’t know about Maple Goodness, but I wouldn’t. The President works and his housing is part of his salary package. When he leaves the job, he leaves the house.

        I don’t have a problem with paying for KP either. It would be nice if they worked 24/7 and the house was part of their compensation package though.

      • hmmm says:

        I think it’s pretty simple and I don’t see how comparing the monarchy to any form of government is anything but specious.

        Fact is, the monarchy, outdated and living off the people with ‘flexible’ accountablity, depends on its survival by projecting a certain false image. Without the monarchy, the UK would do just fine, and as has been said many times before, would generate more income if all the royal frou frou and houses were put on display.

        What I find egregious is the fudging of accounts, the special dispensation from opening the books, the conspicuous consumption, and the blatant and continuous manipulation of public opinion with outright lies. The monarchy has outlived its usefulness except for those who are happy with celebrity. In the age of the internet, the royals are exposed for what they are, it’s not pretty and monarchists are all atwitter to make excuses for the indefensible.

        Reverence for this institution, IMO, is pretty well past its sell-by date. More importantly, people like the Cambridges are in the vanguard of this movement- they show none whatsoever for it.

      • Megan says:

        British monarchy endures because the British population chooses to have it endure. 80% of Brits approve of the monarchy and Prince William is currently the most popular royal.

      • hmmm says:

        Unless I see a legitimate statistic for the 80% approval rating, I’ll take it with a grain of salt. There are scientific polls and then there are the popularity polls. The monarchy endures by manipulating public opinion and lying. They lie about William all the time to elevate him. The ‘polls’ probably reflect that as most popular royal.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        hmm,

        I don’t think that the constitutional monarchy as an institution has outlived its uses per se. Its function has simply changed from earlier times when the monarch was in control of the governance of the realm.

        A constitutional monarchy serves a symbolic function in terms of national identity – and that function is no less important than the more direct forms of governing. Every nation is an “imagined community”, meaning that though the citizens of the nation don’t know each other, they feel a community based on an idea of national identity. When a monarchy is successful it represents an idea of continuity with the past ( and hence serves as a unifying element) – that is, the feeling that members of the imagined national comminity feels with the past of the nation through the means of storytelling and historical representation. It doesn’t really matter if that history is flawed or inaccurate, what matters is what people emotionally invest in it.

        The monarch can also serve as a nation symbol in other ways – fx in Denmark the Queen’s annual New Year’s Speech is very popular. It is, in fact, a tradition in many, if not most, Danish homes. It is broadcast live and generally used as the starting point of many people’s private New Year’s celebration. In that moment, when she speaks to the nation, thousands of people watch her at the same time – and that is an example of how the imagined national community works. There are many, many other examples.

        On a more commercial note, when the Danish Queen (or the Crown Princes and Princess, goes on state visits, they travel with a delegation of diplomats and businessmen, who used the glamour of the official royal visit to cultivate diplomatic contacs and business contracts. The royals are not directly involved in these negotiation, but the glamour of royalty itself is effective. Many heavy-hitting businesspeople have gone on record saying that the contracts made in conjunction with a royal state visit have been very successful . The contracts are made easier and quicker. The DRF has done this for decades and a lot of preparatory work goes into these visits. I recently saw a documentary on the work the royals do in preparation and it is not insignificant.

        Furthmore, both Crown Princess Mary and Princess Marie are involved with international charity organisations that works with children’s and women’s health – and they do official visits with the charities as well as in the relevant countries. They also attend international conferences on the subject. They also often attend government initiatives to boos Danish industry, culture and tourism abroad – like the New Nordic Cool/Culture project in New York some years back (can’t remember the title). They lend the glamour of royalty for the benefit of the national economy abroad and the serves a much more vague but not unimportant symbolic role at home – and I actually see some benefit in having a head of state that isn’t political because that role can be unifying in a way that a president that almost always has specific political affiliations can’t.

        However, this symbolic role is very much dependant on the persons inhabiting it, which also makes it fragile. I happen to live in a country with a successful monarchy with a Queen that, as an artist, really understand how art, culture and the performance of spectacle can serve as an effective means for the emotional investment of national identity and feeling.

        I don’t really know how it works in Britain with the BRF and the charities but I have given an example of how it works in my country. This has been a really long-winded post and I apologize if I sound a bit jargony but the study of national identity and its relation with culture and the arts is my academic specialty.

      • bluhare says:

        I like your long winded posts, AH. You pack a lot of info in there.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        Thanks!

        I just wanted to represent another side of the argument about the relevance of the constitutional monarchy – from someone who lives in one and who studies the intricate and often irrational workings of national identity-formation.

        I fully understand the argument against monarchies as well – and that argument could even be expanded to the members of the RF’s because in many respects they are barred from some of the civic rights that the rest of us enjoy. The can’t vote or express their views on political debates that affect the country they represent. they do, however, have the choice to remove themselves from the succession but even that require a change of law.

        And I want to respond to Olenna’s post that appears later in this thread about how even rational people are gullible and that supporters of a monarchy need to believe that some people are superior. I find that comment insulting and patronizing. I support the Danish monarchy because of what I outlined above. i don’t believe them to be superior but they do a good job and the Queen sees her role as a privilege and and duty – something she has to work for to deserve. And court life isn’t really that glamourous. Believe me – I have worked in an institution with ties to the Danish Court and know people who work for them. They don’t live glamourously but they sure know how to put on a glamourous spectacle for official events – and is that such a bad thing? I love to watch the gowns and tiaras like so many others.

        As long as they serve their country well I have no problem with them and would much prefer an apolitical head of state who can be unifying rather than some retired politician who envitable will have certain political interests, which in itself can be divisive, even if the post is largely ceremonial.

      • hmmm says:

        @ArtHisorian,

        Terrific explanation! Thanks!

        I think you miss the point of Olenna’s post- defending the indefensible.

        It is one thing to have a wonderful monarchy that inherently provides meaning for the country because the members of the RF show reverence for the institution and act accordingly- your RF seems to enhance and uplift the life of the country.

        Your example shows an inherent and seamless integrity and integration completely missing from the BRF. The BRF, IMO, are a dishonest, rapacious lot intent on their survival above all else. The rise of the Cambridges is beginning to expose its seamy underside. I don’t know about Denmark, but during a British coronation, the monarch is anointed, a symbol of Divine favour; I imagine that sense of divine entitlement runs deeply through the BRF’s veins. And lest we forget, once there was a great British Empire.

        IMO, it is the lack of reverence and understanding for the monarchy by members of the RF and their court that is the real culprit here. As you said, it all depends on who inhabits the role. It also depends on whether you contribute to the country or just bleed it dry.

        As much as people hunger/are nostalgic for grand symbols and gestures some individuals/families are not worthy of being elevated and the institution needs to be shelved. It’s that simple.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        hmm,
        Olenna’s statement read as a blanket statement.

        Regarding the BRF – I haven’t really been follwing them, but the project an image that is remote and snobbish. The BRF is also, to my knowledge, the only RF that use an actual coronation and anointment to install a new monarch. This is really abhorrent to me because such a ceremony really has no place in a modern constitutional monarchy – it reeks of absolutist ideology. I don’t really know how it works in other monarchies but in Denmark the monarch is proclaimed by the Prime Minister from the balcony of Parliament. There hasn’t been a coronation since 1839 when the last absolutist monarch, king Christian VIII, was crowned.

      • FLORC says:

        Megan or anyone that knows
        To your post William is the most popular royal.
        When asking people who their favorite royal is are they given only a handful of royals to choose from? It isn’t like who’s your favorite out of Willaim, Andy, and Anne. Or asking those who are not fully aware how many royals there are or what they do? Or how they’ve formed their opinion and if it’s primarily from pro pr articles.

        Just curious. There are so many variables here.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        FLORC,

        That’s the thing about polls – anyone who has worked with statistics can tell you that poll results very much depend on how the poll itself is constructed. Fx is the respondent given several options to chose from, how are the poll questions framed, how many people were asked, etc.

    • Olenna says:

      I agree, TX. I have never read nor heard a valid excuse or rational argument for retaining a monarchy in a developed country. Here, we may not have a perfect democracy, but I’m not expected to kowtow to unelected elite, support their endless line of heirs, AND tolerate the bureaucratic and aristocratic parasites that come with them. In fact, I feel very fortunate to be a citizen of still the greatest country in the world, the US of A.

      • Megan says:

        Olenna – every time you put gas in your car you are kowtowing to the unelected elites in the US of A. The five largest oil companies in the US get $2.4 billion dollars a year in tax breaks. The Sovereign Grant was about $61 million this year. The Queen is a lot cheaper than BP, Exxon Mobile, Shell, Chevron and ConocoPhillips.

      • Maria says:

        Lol @megan KateNot and WillNot should hire you on their PR team. Your logic is amazing—comparing the upkeep of the queen w the oil companies. Hahaha that just made my morning. Queen vs Exxon mobile. Lmao

      • Olenna says:

        I respect your opinion, but kindly disagree. My use of “kowtow” was meant in the literal sense, and I have choices: to drive or not to drive, to consume or not consume goods manufactured and sold by any private or corporate entities. Some would say that because I voluntarily served in the military, I subjugated myself and kowtowed to the government and to my superiors, and subjugated those under me. But, I never looked at it that way. To me, it was giving service to my country, as honorable and necessary as a citizen paying taxes to support our government, law enforcement, infrastructure and even those less fortunate. But here, no one is better than me, no one’s heirs are better than me, I feel no need to aspire to better (superior) than anyone else, and I’m not supporting two forms of government and rule, one of which appears to be wholly symbolic but dependent upon its subjects’ reverence to sustain it’s superiority and lifestyle.

      • Olenna says:

        @Maria, the comparison, as they say in baseball, was definitely a wide swing, but it deserved a response as it was very imaginative.

      • Megan says:

        Olenna – thank you for your service. Lots of my family members are in the service. Kowtowing would be the last word they would use to describe their careers.

      • hmmm says:

        @Olenna,

        Terrific, incisive response. A thing of beauty.

      • Olenna says:

        Thanks, hmmm, and ITA with your comments above regarding comparisons of monarchies to other forms of government. I believe even very intelligent and astute monarchists know royalty is outdated, but big things like fear of change and trust in government, small things like romantic notions of court life and wealth, or maybe their own personal aspirations hold them to the past glory of empires, pomp and circumstance, and belief in the need for a superior human being to lead them and give them a vicarious sense of greatest.

      • Megan says:

        Yep, we’re all so equal in American, Donald Trump, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and I all pay the same percentage of our income in taxes.

      • wolfpup says:

        WOW Olenna – totally amazing grounding of the facts…and you even made me feel even more patriotic. Thank you for being part of the arm of our government.

        Megan, after Occupy, people have become more aware, but I am still waiting for ideas about how to tackle income inequality…I hear a lot of hopelessness, as we have to butt heads with big money, but I do not doubt that our our system of government will allow for the people, to have the voice for change. There is just the need to educate people, apart from all the propaganda of corporations. I’ve heard despair, because many have felt that Occupy was not successful, but I would argue that Occupy brought this issue front and center.

      • Megan says:

        Wolf pup- I am a public interest lobbyist and I can assure there is no shortage of ideas for how to tackle income equality. What is missing is the will to do so.

      • bluhare says:

        That’s interesting, Megan. Honest! What’s the area in which you work?

        PS Totally agree about what’s missing.

    • hmmm says:

      @megan,

      The crown generates 3/4 billion dollars?

      Who is the crown? The sitting RF or heritage sites?

      According to Republic,

      £500m is simply a quarter of the estimated total spent by visitors attracted by Britain’s culture and heritage.

      Even VisitBritain now admits that the figure says nothing about what might happen if we transferred to a republic (France, anyone?). And even if we accept the figure, it equates to just 0.03% of GDP. The margin of error when calculating GDP is 0.7%..

      http://republic.org.uk/sites/default/files/wortheverypenny.pdf

      • hmmm says:

        Thanks, Megan.

        The first is an American opinion piece. It certainly does not rebut the Republic’s numbers, especially when the Republic provides the stats for the bigger picture.

        The second is a bespoke poll commissioned by a tabloid and therefore can be manipulated, IMO.

      • wolfpup says:

        My daughter was in England last month, and she said that they wanted to charge her $40 to tour Westminster Abbey. Tourists could generate a lot of income with those types of fees…

        When I toured Germany, there were no charges for any buildings that I recall. There might have been something charged when we went to the Strausburg Cathedral in France, but I know it wasn’t anything close to $40, for our whole family.

      • bluhare says:

        We were there last year, wolfpup, and I didn’t even get to complain about paying $40, but I’d have paid to go in. I’ve been before, but I was young enough I don’t remember it well. I was too lazy to get up and go over to watch the royals arriving the next day; it was the service commemorating the queen’s coronation and the main abbey was closed because of it.

        Great gift shop and restaurant though.

      • Megan says:

        The Atlantic is a Pulitzer Prize winning magazine that accurately reported 80% of Brits support the monarchy.

      • Megan says:

        Hmmm … No facts will convince you because the ONLY narrative you are interested in is the one that fits your view of the royal family.

      • maria says:

        @Megan: you are, of course, entitled to you own view and ideas about royal family. So are others, like hmmm. I am among those who think the RF lavish over the top life style shouldn’t be excused because oh well, Donald Trump is rich, or because I don;t know how in US, or any country is doing something that they shouldn’t. One bad doesn’t excuse another. And I will NEVER accept that this is how we should judge things. If something is not right, is not right. PERIOD. It doesn’t make it OK because oh well worse things are happening somewhere else. They should work for the money they are getting. They shouldn’t be treated as gold just because it ‘s their birth right. They are not superior to anyone, and this expenses are not justified. The palace should be renovated and open to public with a visiting fee.

      • Megan says:

        Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but no one is entitled to their own facts. And the fact is that it is currently the will of the British people is for the monarchy to endure. I have no judgement about that as an American, I simply accept it and follow their royal family with a keen interest in fashion, gossip, and lifestyle.

      • FLORC says:

        Polls are always sketchy and unreliable. Most anyways. Unless it’s a census where each person is accounted for it is easily and frequently manipulated.
        Polls more often serve as a vessel to further an agenda. I feel this way about many polls. Each person has independent reasons for forming their own opinions and cannot be duplicated to others with similar salary, locations, and backrounds.

  27. GracePM says:

    I don’t see how anybody who’s paying attention can admire these two.

  28. somuchdrama says:

    You all sure are hard on a human being you don’t know. There are things bigger to complain about.

    • bluhare says:

      And I do my fair share of complaining about them. But not here. Because this is for “fun complaining”. And I enjoy it. :P

  29. HarleyB says:

    Any chance we will get to see the ‘reveal’?

  30. DameEdna says:

    How can anyone say, with certainty, that Diana wouldn’t have approved of the Middleton family?

    She saw no problem in associating with Mohammed Fayed, a vulgarian of the highest order. A corrupter of British parliamentarians too.

  31. Dame Snarkweek says:

    We will kick and scream about the Cambridges and that is fine. We will tell anyone who will listen how we would do it better and smaarter than they do and we would be correct. But when it comes to *really* *truly* understanding how the rf lives, functions and makes decisions we will almost always fail. Even Diana didn’t really get it.

    • hmmm says:

      I can guess this much: the RF cares about the preservation and maintenance of the RF above all things and gears all their decision making to that end.

      • LAK says:

        Hmmmm: if past behaviour is indicative of future behaviour, your comment is 100% correct – see recent court fights to make FOI apply to the royals, taxes: payment of, letters of parliament that speak on self interest – not just Charles, but HM too etc and so forth.

  32. Xantha says:

    I still can’t believe after all of the lies they’ve been caught in, their blatantly obvious lack of work ethic, that there are people out there that are STILL defending them. Even worse, they have to try and cut down others just to make them look better. Diana was not a perfect woman. She had many emotional issues, had affairs with married men, and used the press to her benefit against Charles. But she wasn’t a lazy Royal. She did her duties and often did them well. I don’t know how Diana would have felt about Kate but I’m certain that she would hate what a lazy asshole her oldest son turned out to be.

    Oh and may I remind people that this is the SECOND renovation the KP “apartment” is going through? When they moved in last year, everything was supposed to have been taken care of already: the abestos, the decorating, the plumbing, everything. There was even a delay in when they were supposed to move in because reportedly removing the abestos and fixing the plumbing took more time than they had expected. So…why is the second renovation needed again?

    • Francis says:

      Xantha. thank you, for me you are a voice of reason, concerning these two.

      The constant defense of these two by some , no matter how much they spend, no matter how little they work, no matter how many blatant lies they get caught in, is hilarious.

      I was done with William and Kate when they blatantly blew off from their full role in attending their scheduled duties for the Paralympics and instead sneaked away for a Holiday in France, which would have NEVER come to the publics attention if Kate was not caught Topless & bottomless sunbathing at the France/hotel estate. ( ..and the press nor many Kate fans called them on THAT, instead the focus went to how Kate was wronged, instead of how they should NOT have been holidaying in France in the first place and should have been fulfilling their duties at the Paralympics!) These two have done many things over the years and not been called-out for it. I’m glad the press is highlighting their spending on these homes.

      When the Daily Mail is slowly turning on their favorite cover girl Kate and their favorite golden Prince William, you know these two have some serious issues concerning how they are behaving.

      • FLORC says:

        Francis
        The French vacation was largely forgiven since it’s accepted as the time Kate conceived George.

        And Kate has been seen topless before. I’m such a broken record with this, but William made this the big deal it was. I doubt anyone would have cared as much as they have had he not made had a meltdown.
        Popular theory has been the photographer had pictures of Kate mid drag off a cigarette while trying for a child. Most of us here saw the pics before they were taken down. That is a pretty good reason why to take people to court over shots we’ve already seen. Although, William does have a short fuse for having things happen outside of his control.

      • Xantha says:

        Florc: Really? People thought George was conceived then? Can’t they do basic math?

        And wasn’t there a former bodyguard who talked about William’s temper when he was a teenager? If so then yeah he was spoiled and tempermental long before he actually met Kate.

      • FLORC says:

        Xantha

        The vacations and timeline are close to asume they were trying. And to take a vacation to try for an heir… more acceptable than leaving just because.
        Also, smoking will trying for a child? Not good PR.

        And lots of people from William’s youth have said he’s spoiled. From preschool to college to how he put many out of business in hard ecoomic times in the Closer because their employer did something within free press. He has an awful temper. Heard years ago someone saying when William yelled you felt it in your chest and all your hairs would stand on end.

  33. Olenna says:

    Extra, Extra, read all about it: Kate’s 3rd kitchen! The DM sure loves to stir up a sh*t storm! Now, they’re on about her ripping out the one in Anmer Hall. It never ends…

    • kibbles says:

      Kate is a bigger threat to the monarchy than Diana ever was. At least the public liked Diana. Kate could be the person who ends up destroying the monarchy because the public is sick of Kate’s acting like Marie Antoinette. She destroyed a perfectly good kitchen because she has been a freeloader her entire adult life. She doesn’t know how to save or value things that aren’t brand new. Kate did not care that the kitchen had been remodelled for £38,000 six years ago. To her it was old and needed to be replaced by brand new appliances to her specifications. She thinks she is entitled to anything and everything because she is royalty.

      • FLORC says:

        Kibbles
        I must disagree.
        Kate will not be the cause of the monarchys downfall. Should it happen within her lifetime I firmly believe this is all a result of William. At any point William can tell Kate no. He could be the one telling her to do whatever and it will be fine. No expense to great.

        I think she has no value of money. Her planted stories of how she haggles for a lower price and recycles clothes do not show her to know the value. They show her to enjoy the illusion of a deal.

        Meanwhile, William has been raised in this life. He’s seen how the public will pick overspending apart, but believes he’s above it and protected. And to a certain point he is.
        Bottom line. Kate has as much freedom as William gives her. If William was frugal Kate would be too. If William worked more, so would Kate. Kate isn’t the issue here, William is.

  34. Liberty says:

    THIRD KITCHEN on its way, my dears! According to the following report — which has a nice photo of Kate laughing with a bunch of professional chefs in a professional kitchen:

    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/kate-middleton-two-kitchens-kate-plans-install-third-kitchen-country-mansion-1454584

    …Kate is installing yet another kitchen in their country place, Anmer Hall. That’s three! Even though the mansion was owned by owners of a kitchen design firm who put one in worth 38.000 pounds six years ago. (I know, six years, it must be Medieval. And ooh peasants made porridge in it.) So……RRRRRIPPPPPP it out! And PPPPPPEEEEEEEELLLLLLL the pounds out the of wallet, Daddy Chuck! Wheeee! We want more!

    EDIT: Sorry Olenna, I didn’t see your post! while laughing and writing mine! Isn’t this fun? THREEEE! THREEEEEEEEEEEE! Will there be a fourth — another Baby Kitchen, at Anmer? Come on, Second Baby Kitchen!

    • Dany says:

      oh please, i´m sure the old taps and fittings weren´t of gold. You cannot expect Kate cooking in a room with non-golden fittings. Kitchens worth under 40000 pounds are trash. Kate knows that and has to intervene ;)

    • bluhare says:

      I thought it sad that the people were very proud of it — and put it in a house they didn’t own! — and said on their website how lovely it is and how they hoped Kate and William enjoyed it as much as they did. Guess we know the answer to that now.

      The Queen bought them out of their lease; I suspect she “bought” that kitchen too.

    • ArtHistorian says:

      The photo shows a really lovely kitchen – I can’t believe that they are going to dismantle it – it is perfectly suited, even luxurious, for a private home. Why change something that is relatively new and not broken?

      • hmmm says:

        I’m gobsmacked. That is a truly beautiful kitchen. The only people who would trash something so serenely perfect are those with money to burn (and it’s not even as if they are going to spend timing cooking in it!). This gives more insight into the Dolittles’ nouveau riche mentality. As LAK has said before, they’re doing it because they can. I bet they gutted it.

        How mortifying for the original owners. And this, from a woman (with an art history degree) who even gets her beiges wrong.

      • wolfpup says:

        Liberty, is that photo from their trip to the US and Canada? All this entitled kitchen nesting, really shows that’s she thinks that better than the folks before her. imo

      • MinnFinn says:

        @hmmm A palace spokesperson said the extant Anmer Hall kitchen will be unrecognizable after the new one is done. So yeah, they gutted it. I would love to see photos of the new kitchen (not gonna happen I know) to help me understand what they thought needed improving.

      • LAK says:

        Just to show you how many lies are being told about the state of the apartment and therefore needing the huge taxpayer bills, this is the main hall way of the apartment when Margaret first took it over:

        http://lh4.ggpht.com/-Ax2-EQCIF8k/UgDcnVA6PII/AAAAAAAB8k4/vD-wMhguLQU/image328_thumb.png?imgmax=800

        This was the same hallway after Margaret’s refurb:

        http://lh5.ggpht.com/-PI9NEqTxXRw/UgDcr1ZxhlI/AAAAAAAB8lQ/ssFFEBJIB8o/image325_thumb.png?imgmax=800

        more recently after charity refurb -this is when WK toured it and decided they wanted it:

        http://lh3.ggpht.com/-MIwBJy_loUc/UgDcufBlCfI/AAAAAAAB8lg/16E0Yp8TVJg/s1600-h/image193%25255B1%25255D.png

        one of the other rooms showing an exhibition of dresses that they put on:

        http://lh5.ggpht.com/-Tr6myag8tiE/UgDcyOSgoHI/AAAAAAAB8lw/1SLii-zNcKE/s1600-h/image%25255B69%25255D.png

        the spokesman is making statements that sound like they found the flat in the state Margaret found it in!!!!

      • bluhare says:

        Are you kidding me? Those last two photos are gorgeous, but excuse me for a minute while I shriek, “THAT DRESS!!!!” The one in the last photo.

      • FLORC says:

        I’m shrieking with you Bluhare! It’s lovely and I want it!

        And how they’re making the KP apartment sound doesn’t add up from the start. If it was so awful why did Kate want it so badly over Diana’s former apartment that was move in ready. Or how so much of this was not tackled in the initial refurb. The one where everything came out purple-ish. Don’t you paint after all the installs and drywalling are done? Have I been doing it wrong?

        I do understand someone elses taste not matching yours and making a place “your own”, but this is too much.

    • Megan says:

      I figured they would get trolled for this, but I could not deal with this kitchen I think it is so ugly. I hate the cabinets! I hate the counters and I especially hate the antique looking appliances. I would have dealt with this before the leaky roof.

      • FLORC says:

        Megan
        While I like the kitchen and wouldn’t touch it… Structural issues always take the lead over cosmetic issues. Are you saying you would install a new kitchen to suit your taste and tackle a leaky roof after the kitchen? Knowlingly allowing a leaky roof to possibly damamge your new kitchen and create mold pockets? Mold Pockets that could result in you ripping out your new dream kitchen?

        So sorry if this was sarcasm on your part. Sometimes I think people go to unrealistic extremes to defend Kate’s actions of decisions.

      • Megan says:

        FLORC – I was joking about fixing the kitchen before the roof because I would have dealt with them at the same time. The bacteria in the wood countertops would concern me greatly.

      • FLORC says:

        Hah got it Megan.
        I did wonder about the wood counter tops. I would imagine there’s a coating on the wood that protects it, but doesn’t gloss it.
        If this was there job designing kitchens i’d imagine they went that route.

  35. Francis says:

    The mirror has a scathing article by Carole Malone, calls them both two spoilt brats and basically hypocrites.