The Sussexes’ renovation of Frogmore Cottage cost taxpayers $3 million

The Royal Family attends a Service to commemorate the Armistice on the centenary of the end of WWI

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced last fall that they would be making Frogmore Cottage their permanent home. The scandal at the time was why they didn’t want to live in an apartment in Kensington Palace, but I’m still not completely sure they were even offered a KP apartment. I think they were given a handful of choices and Frogmore was on the list. They knew going into the decision that Frogmore would need months of renovation, because it was basically a derelict little cottage which hadn’t been touched in many years, and the last time it was in use, it had been split up into a “dorm” style living space. Because Frogmore Cottage is part of the Windsor Castle property, it’s a “publicly owned” property, meaning taxpayer funds go into the rehab, just as taxpayer funds go into the renovations at Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace, etc. All of which to say, some numbers and data involved with the Frogmore reno have been released and guess what? None of it ever involved a “yoga studio” with a “floating floor” or whatever else they said to bash Meghan.

While the British taxpayer has paid for the overall renovation costs through the Queen’s annual Sovereign Grant, Buckingham Palace figures released Monday show it cost the public around $3 million. However, “anything moveable” or in the cottage gardens has been paid for by Harry and Meghan themselves “All fixtures and fittings were paid for by their Royal Highnesses,” adds the source. “Curtains, furnishings — all that would be paid separately, paid privately.”

At the same time, Harry and Meghan have also had to dip into their pockets for anything deemed too expensive for the public to provide — such as an upgraded kitchen, bathroom, fitted wardrobes or flooring. “If a member of the royal family says, ‘We want a better kitchen than you’re prepared to provide with public money,’ then that would fall to them privately and they would have to meet the cost,” adds the source. “If they want that higher specification, they have to pay the extra.”

Contrary to previous reports, this does not include a yoga studio, or mother-and-baby yoga room complete with a “floating” or sprung wooden floor.

As with all old homes, Frogmore had enough of its own surprises to keep the royal couple on their toes. “A very large proportion of the ceiling beams and floor joists were defective and had to be replaced,” adds the source about the mid-1800s cottage, which was turned from a single home into five small dormitory-style units long before Harry and Meghan set eyes on it. “The heating systems were outdated and inefficient and were not to the environmental standards that we would expect today,” the source adds. “The electrical system also needed to be substantially replaced and rewired, even extending to the establishment of a separate upgraded electrical substation, which was in addition to the main works on the property. And new gas and water mains had to be introduced to the property, replacing the five separate links that were there for the property before and were in a bad state of repair. Overall, the works were conducted over a period of around six months.”

While the $3 million construction costs may seem high for a newlywed’s first pad, it’s all part of the wider $55 million spent by the Queen to conserve the royal palaces over the past 12 months. This conservation work is largely funded by an annual $63 million Sovereign Grant given to the Queen by the U.K. Government to maintain the royal palaces on behalf of the nation — a role that she and the rest of the royal family take extremely seriously.

“The property had not been the subject of work for some years and had already been earmarked for renovation in line with our responsibility to maintain the condition of the occupied Royal Palaces Estate,” Sir Michael Stevens, Keeper of the Privy Purse told reporters at Buckingham Palace on Monday. “The Sovereign Grant covered the work undertaken to turn the building into the official residence and home of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their new family. The building was returned to a single residence and outdated infrastructure was replaced to guarantee the long-term future of the property.”

[From People]

To compare, the Kensington Palace Apartment 1 renovation was mostly picked up by the Sovereign Grant as well, and for the furnishings and extras (Kate repainting purple walls, adding a second kitchen), Prince Charles picked up the cost. I imagine Charles “helped” with the extras for Frogmore too. As for the $3 million figure… it doesn’t shock me given the state of Frogmore at the start of it, and it sounds like nearly everything had to be rebuilt. Anyway, as I said before, the stories about the royals’ renovating their properties always sounds excessive, but… you know, the Cambridges spent more on bigger homes.

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288 Responses to “The Sussexes’ renovation of Frogmore Cottage cost taxpayers $3 million”

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  1. Kittycat says:

    I really hate the fake outrage.

    • Moses says:

      Look, I get that you can’t just plop an IKEA kitchen down in Frogmore, I really do. But £3 million on the public’s dime is a lot of money. It was a lot for the Cambridges, and it’s a lot for the Sussexes too. That’s not fake outrage. People who are funding the royals via their taxes should absolutely be able to say they aren’t comfortable with this kind of spending.

      • Melissa says:

        I get that it’s a lot, but these aren’t run of the mill buildings where you can hire any old contractor off the street. They’re historic buildings that require expensive materials and expensive artisan contractors to preserve the character and function of the building. If the taxpayers don’t want to pay it, then they can watch their tourism revenue go down the toilet and the palaces crumble.

      • Anna says:

        Genuine question here: so what if it’s a lot of money?

        It’s not like Harry or Megan can go out and get a part time job at a gas station. Their job is to be royals, and by all appearances, they take that job seriously. None of the things described in this article sound excessive or extravagant. It’s not unfair for them to want to live in an efficient and safe home. I don’t see how it matters that the tax payers sign their paychecks, so to speak.

        That being said, I’m not including Kate or William in my statement because they don’t seem to work especially hard.

      • Moses says:

        As I said, I understand these buildings require more than your run-of-the-mill reno. But please spare me the BS about the tourism revenues going downhill. What, are all the palaces going to up and vanish if there’s no monarchy? Hell no. People will still want to see and be a part of history. And they’d be able to do it a sight better without royals taking up space and keeping parts of the palaces off limits to tourists.

      • Becks1 says:

        I can understand people wanting more transparency and information about the royals financials. I can also understand being frustrated that there are these expenses that crop up because a royal family member gets married and has kids.

        But, it sounds like this is one of the main purposes of the sovereign grant – to pay for upkeep to the royal estates – and this house was in line for the renovations anyway, it just got bumped up.

      • alice says:


        “Genuine question here: so what if it’s a lot of money?”

        Because it looks really bad in a country where homelessness and food-bank use has exploded, and at a time of extreme economic anxiety the money given to the Royals is always an issue. It’s also highlights the slight disconnect between the branding, if you want to call it that, of the younger Royals and the reality.

        “It’s not unfair for them to want to live in an efficient and safe home.”

        True. But they’re independently wealthy (and we keep on being told this whenever costings are brought up, and it’s true – from their previous work and inheritances they are independently wealthy, they can live very well and better than most people in the country using their own money) so they can live in an efficient and safe home on their own money. The royals should learn to budget just like everyone else in the country has to.

      • Elizabeth says:

        Literally we are talking about taking three million pounds for a cottage no tourist had ever visited or probably ever will visit in a time of great scarcity FOR CHILDREN. The palaces were obscene to begin with and still are.

      • Julie says:

        The royals and their residences really don’t do anything for tourism. Of the places they actually currently use, only Buckingham Palace rates, and even then it’s of much lower interest to tourists than our top museums.

        If we could kick them all out of these places, then their residences would have some value to tourism (still not much, because residences like Frogmore Cottage aren’t actually very interesting to tourists) but right now they’re nothing but a money pit. Without the royals a place like Frogmore Cottage could at least generate enough income to pay off renovations like this every decade. With the Suxxeses there all we’re doing is subsidising rich peoples reno’s and getting no return on investment.

      • Becks1 says:

        So I guess my thing is when I read some of these replies (and trust me, I can understand how frustrating it is to see the totals spent for this family, I pull my hair out when I see how much Trump and his family cost us), but are you all opposed to the royal family in general? Because it seems like these costs are part of having a royal family.

        (but again, I do understand the need for more transparency and information.)

        ETA and to be clear I’m not asking that in an adversarial manner. I actually want to know, because as long as there is a British royal family, with members who work “full time” for the country, I’m not sure what the answer is.

      • Jen says:

        No outrage here, but the tourism money doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. Without actual royals, England still has a lot of tourist sites. Look at France, for example – tourism is still huge there.

      • Tastee says:

        Ain’t no tourists visiting Frogmore. It was being used as a place for staff to live = makes sense, though I have to wonder what state is was in to need that much spent on it. Now, £2.4million later, it apparently suffices as a sometimes residence. While nurses going to food banks are people told that there isn’t a “money tree”. I guess for some, there are.

        As pointed out above, this notion that the royals bring in more money than they cost is, to be polite, utter BS. The Tower of London is an enormous money-making tourist site and no royals live there.

        If they all got turfed out tomorrow and had to get real jobs, people would still want to see Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace. People would visit London.

        But I guess we’re all just enormous racists for not wanting poor people, many of whom are BAME, to go hungry.

      • Megan says:

        I don’t think $3 million is outrageous for an historic property that needed all of the utilities replaced, but it is tone deaf for the royals to use taxpayer money.

      • ElleKaye says:

        @Moses, I understand it is a sizeable amount, but at least it is an investment. Everytime Trump flies to Mar-a-Lago to play golf it costs taxpayers 3.4 million dollars. As of February, he had taken 19 trips there, and we have nothing to show for it.

      • MissM says:

        They were planning to renovate Frogmore before Harry and Meghan got married, it was run down and in need of repairs and updating.

        I think that the most notable thing to come out of the expenses being released is that Charles expenses only increased by $80K despite a wedding and new member joining last year (well 2 if you include Louis). So much for Meghans million dollar taxpayer funded wardrobe, right?

      • Blue Orange says:

        You could build a house for less…probably a bigger house. The issue is with the fact that the Royals are not being cost efficient. They don’t seem to understand the true value of money. £3 Million would build at least 20 new 3 bedroom houses outside of London. TWENTY!

        The Cambridges & Sussex’s talk about mental health and the roll that poverty plays. They ‘support’ Heads Together, Place2Be & the victims of Grenfell tower and then they both spend insane amounts of taxpayers money on things like this. Meanwhile the people they ‘support’ are having their benefits cut again, struggle to find housing and relying on food banks for their meals. This is where that tax money should be going.

      • Louise says:

        This has been on the news all day. Its big news here. I wondered how this would be spun…and I like this site. He is 7th in line and that seems to be the line that is being said on the news. Kate and William are future King and Queen. Also austerity and people are really feeling lack of money, implementation of Universal Credits etc.Its not right. Its welfare. the lot of them are on Welfare.

      • Vi says:

        Do Harry and Meghan “work” especially hard? None of them really “work” to begin with.

      • Tami says:

        When you read the report, though, so much of the money was spent on electrical, plumbing, roofing, heating, and structural costs. Those HAD to be done regardless of who lived there. It IS a ton of money and I don’t dismiss that, but would people still be complaining if it weren’t Harry and Meghan living there?

      • A says:

        So, let’s take that to it’s logical conclusion though. Say people do refuse to pay the 3 million required for the upkeep of Frogmore. Harry and Meghan don’t move in, they spend their money on a private residence elsewhere etc, whatever. What happens to Frogmore cottage? It is a historic building. I doubt it’s one that’s conducive to tourism or anything of the sort. Do we let it rot? Would it be okay to spend 3 million to renovate the space if the royals weren’t involved and wouldn’t be living in it? Then you’re just spending three million to fix up a house that doesn’t serve any functional purpose for anyone. How do we decide what the balance is between preserving historical structures and paying for the royal family’s upkeep during constrained times?

      • Tina says:

        @A – we sell it. To a buyer who is willing to take on the challenges of a Grade I listed building, which many buildings sold privately in this country are. It’s a pain to deal with, but you know that going in.

      • Godwina says:

        “but are you all opposed to the royal family in general?”

        Effin YES.

    • Mae says:

      Someone on twitter did the math and the renovation cost the taxpayers £0.04 (four pence/cents). That’s a one time deal, not annually like the £1.24 that taxpayers pay for the expenses of all working royals.

      • alice says:

        It’s still too much. Would you like to be have to give a few cents to an American multimillionaire and his billion dollar family because, well, it’s not that much really when you think about it and if we all chip in he can get himself a nice penthouse (or do one up, because his other one is little small now he’s married) and who are we to ask if it’s really necessary when he and his family have so many other townhouses and penthouses and they give so much back by visiting hospitals and naming school wings and museums, etc… It’s ridiculous however little the amount. They all have their own money. They can all afford to bankroll their own lifestyles and real estate.

      • Marina says:

        Just so you’re aware that amount (£1.24) doesn’t include how much we also pay for their security. They’re all independently wealthy- pay for it themselves. Is this 2019 or 1819?

      • Mae says:

        But this money is being used to fix up a “public property”. They don’t get to keep this house. They are essentially a house sitter to a historical property that they will get evicted out of if the monarchy gets abolished. Or if another monarch (like William) decides to kick them out.
        I would understand the upset if they had bought a mansion for themselves (something they would own fully) using public funds. The 3 million is just for the structural work of the building. A historic property that needed the renovation anyway. They paid for everything else.

      • Mae says:

        Also as I understand it, the Sovereign Grant (which funded part of the reno) comes from 15% of the revenue of the Crown Estates. This money is not technically taken from the taxpayers. Instead it’s money that could have gone back to the public but instead goes to the royals. So they didn’t technically take four pence from taxpayers wallets to pay for the reno.

      • Purrrr says:

        That also adds up to a substantial dollar amount that could be better used on programs to assist the people of the UK.

      • Blue Orange says:

        This is a frequent argument of royalists and the Royals themselves. The cost is so small to each UK household that why are we complaining? Maybe because it still adds up to a huge amount of money and meanwhile services are being cut and poverty is on the increase. That money could make a huge difference elsewhere but instead benefits people who already have fortunes of their own.

      • Gia says:

        I agree with Marina. They have their own money they can use not the taxpayers in this situation. Prince Charles pays for their clothes via the Duchy, his own private money from renting land and other investments and businesses not taxpayers. Harry has money from Diana as well. She had a ton of her own money so he’s got it from both sides he can use. When Diana died she left a 30 mill fortune that Harry got a massive chunk of.

    • kerwood says:

      Especially since most of the outrage is probably coming from Americans who don’t have a millimeter of skin in this game. They got rid of their monarchy a long time ago so it makes me wonder why they have so much to say about a sovereign country’s choice to keep theirs.

      Extra security was probably needed to keep the racist sociopaths at bay. It was an old house that had been badly neglected. Who was responsible for the upkeep?

      I think that if you went on the streets of England and told the average man/woman how much the renovations cost and asked them if they were outraged, they wouldn’t even break stride.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Good news, at least one of those racist sociopaths was handed a four year prison sentence.

      • Lorelei says:

        America never had a monarchy.

        And you cannot tell by someone’s comments here what country they live in.

      • Pip says:

        Erm, I think you might be underestimating the anger amongst us in the UK at the moment. The atmosphere is incredibly febrile & I don’t think it would take you long to find someone who could work up quite a bit of “outrage” at these costs. Bad timing & bad times here in the UK.

      • Lady D says:

        Can you elucidate, Nota?

      • Tina says:

        I’m assuming nota is referring to the two white supremacist teenagers in the UK who made threats against Harry (calling him a ‘race traitor’), one of whom received such a sentence.

    • tuille says:

      That’s about 44 cents per person ($0.44) based on GB population of 66,960,000 people.

    • Pip says:

      I’m a republican (small r) & would prefer we didn’t have this bunch. But even at the best of times this would be cloth-eared. People sleeping on the streets has gone up 21% over the past year In London, children are going to school hungry, hospices are closing – HOSPICES for god’s sake, for the want of this kind of money.

      Plus the country is being driven off the edge of a cliff by posh twats so public sympathy has worn pretty thin for the entitled, spoiled & privileged.

      If we have to have a monarchy then please can they be dull, silent & cheap. (Again, I don’t buy the argument re tourism: which country gets the most tourists? France. & we all know how their monarchy ended.)

      • Megan says:

        Comparing the UK to France is a false equivalency. France has ski resorts and vineyards which draw million of tourists every year.

      • Pip says:

        Yup, Megan, I agree – I used a lazy argument :-)

        I still think the royal family should go for us to move forward as a grown-up country (no signs of that at the moment). I also stand firmly by my statement that it’s a really shocking time to be doing anything which could be even vaguely construed as profligate. Not good PR.

      • Godwina says:

        I’m with you, Pip. I’m also disturbed by the fact that Frogmore was in dire need of health and safety renovations yet staff were living in the flats and the H&S upgrades only came into effect for freaking VIPs. What, it was fine for commoners to live in the rust dust?

        (If the reports on that are wrong–and I hope they are–and “unliveable” Frogmore has been standing empty for several years because of its poor state, I stand corrected. I’m never sure who to believe with respect to that lot.)

    • Christo says:

      I hate SELECTIVE outrage to things/situations/dynamics that would otherwise receive no scrutiny if William and Kate and NOT MEGHAN MARKLE were involved.

    • PointingScreaming says:

      Ugh. This cottage is a national treasure, not a Walmart. The details need have lasting value & aesthetics. Plus I wound’t doubt every couple upgrades- i’d love to see a comparison chart for the past 100 yrs of royal newlywed renovations!

  2. HMC says:

    Sounds to me like a good deal of it was structural concerns: ceiling beams, floor joists, gas and water mains in bad state of repair. Like you said, no yoga studio or meditation room. They also had to pay for landscaping/garden lighting themselves.

    • Fanny says:

      The breakdown sounds very very fair to me. Structural improvements needed to maintain a publicly-owned structure benefit everyone and should be paid with public money. Personalizations and removable things should be paid for by the occupants.

      There is always going to be chatter about how much royals are paying for their home improvements, including Her Majesty. That goes hand in hand with being royal. Meghan and Harry don’t need to be made into victims over this. They were just gifted with a renovated mansion. So what if a story said there was going to be a certain type of floor and there isn’t? It does not matter in the long run at all.

      • Ashley says:

        NONSENSE, I think that many years ago, a lot of these properties should have been turned into museums, which would generate income to renovate the properties, maybe not fully, but at least to a certain degree.
        This may not apply to Frogmore Cottage.
        The BRF should have started trimming off of their expenses many years ago, because when things are not going well in the country, the public always blames the rich and as we all know things go up and down in life and the same applies to the economy.
        The very rich, stick out, it is what it is.
        One solution would be to pick one palace for all of the top members of the BRF to live in, that are full-time working Royals, either Buckingham Palace or whichever works best.
        The rest should be designated as ” not a royal residence “, so it could be utilized as museums, spaces for public events, ceremonies and so on.
        The upkeep of all of these royal residences must be outright astronomical, just think of how much it adds up to having full time staff alone for several residences.
        It would also help to trim expenses, if they would have a core group of full time Royals that are in the direct line of succession to the throne to guarantee the future of the monarchy and they would be fully funded by taxpayers, but the rest should get a job.
        Prince Harry for example is quite low on the totem poll when it comes to becoming a king and also Prince Andrew’s kids, they should definitely get jobs and not live off daddy’s money via taxpayers money.
        I’m not sure why is there a need for the Queen to live at Buckingham Palace, Prince William with his family at Kensington and Price Harry at Frogmore and Price Charles wherever it is he lives, it must be very costly.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Harry and Meghan will soon be 1/3 of the working royals, and will be for all of Charles’s reign and Wiliam’s (if he makes it). Go compare Frogmore Cottage to Andrew’s Royal Lodge or Edward’s Bagshot Park, and come back and complain that Harry and Meghan’s new place is too extravagant.

      • windyriver says:

        @nota – took a look at Bagshot Park, wow, had no idea. Makes Frogmore look like the gardener’s cottage.

        Question – couple of sources indicate Edward pays an annual rent of 90,000 pounds for Bagshot. To your knowledge, is this accurate? Do any of the other royals (Anne, Andrew, etc.) pay any similar fees for the properties they occupy?

    • Lorelei says:

      Shouldn’t some blame go to the Queen for letting one of the properties get that bad in the first place? She has more than enough money allocated to maintain them so it doesn’t get to that point of disrepair.

      • Ashley says:

        @ notasugarhere :
        Excuse me, but have you even read my comment?
        Please kindly point out where in the world did I say that Harry and Meghan’s new place is too extravagant ???

      • Leslie says:

        The Queen absolutely should shoulder some blame. She’s getting an extra stipend from the sovereign grant for the Buckingham Palace renovations. Which is great until you realize she also got money to do that in prior grants, totally mismanaged it (including paying for William and Kate’s renovations), went begging for more and got it.

        So, no, I don’t raise my eyebrows that high for this remodel. It’s listed and they had to retrofit the building, not to mention add security features to it. £2.4 million doesn’t seem that outrageous all things considered. One of which being William and Kate spending £4 to 5 million on KP then promptly leaving for Anmer and spending another £1 million there.

  3. Redburgandy says:

    This is not about the media, it’s about transparency. The British public have a right to know how much the royals are spending and to hold them accountable. Past years have shown that the British public have never been at ease with spiralling royal spending especially at a time of widespread spending cuts. The release of the financial report makes news every year, and in previous years no royal has been spared from the publics wrath. To put it bluntly it doesn’t matter whether other people think the spending is warranted, the only opinion that counts is that of the British public.

    We also need to remember that the financial report is just the tip of the iceberg and there is much more that doesn’t get disclosed such as security costs. The royals are exempt from the freedom of information act so they can get away with only reporting the bare minimum. What is required is full disclosure and we are still not getting that.

    • OriginalLala says:

      I had no idea the Royals were exempt from the Freedom of Information Act!

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      We are not getting full financial disclosure from them – Chuck has used the Human Rights Act to hide his tax returns. Tax returns that are alleged to show that he is claiming personal expenditure for himself and his family as tax deductible refunds – expenditure such as clothes (Katie Keen’s bespoke designer sh!t), personal grooming (wiglets), jewellery etc..

      • Monicack says:

        This is unfair. Why not mention expenses for all his children and their families? Why not mention the jewelry he lavishes on Camilla?

    • HMC says:

      Most of our eye rolling over the outrage, faux or not, is the reporting leading up to the “big reveal,” that Meghan (and Meghan only because Harry doesn’t live there too or anything) was wasting tax payer dollars (pounds) on trivial trendy things no one needs (may want but not need) like a private yoga studio (which I’m sure would have turned into a hot yoga studio with its own dedicated electrical system for the radiant heat lol) when it turns out a bulk of it was spent on making sure the ceiling didn’t cave in, or the water main didn’t burst.

      Yes it was all expensive. It’s a historical property that had fallen in a degree of disrepair. What did everyone expect? The repairs had to fall in line with historical accuracy etc.

      • Charlie says:

        If, as the Keeper of the Privy Purse says, there is a responsibility to maintain the condition of the historic buildings, how was Frogmore allowed to become so run down? Surely the cost would have been far less if the property had been maintained?

        After all, deferred maintenance is no maintenance.

      • Julie says:

        Right? No one cares about this building unless someone important is living there. When it was units for estate workers no one gave a damn about its condition.

        It’s a listing building because of The Crown Estate, but it has no great history attached to it. It’s an already unimpressive at the time building Queen Charlotte had built as part of her gardens. Queen Victoria had breakfast there once. Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna was allowed to stay there a little while. That’s about it, and that’s not interesting or enticing to tourists as for as royal and royal related buildings go. It’s not at all architecturally interesting, and it’s already been changed massively from from it was originally. Ideally it would be nice to preserve it, but it wouldn’t be some tragedy if it fell into disrepair, and the Crown Estate apparently agrees since they’ve let it come close repeatedly.

      • Wisca says:

        Exactly, Julie. This is what I find upsetting:

        “When it was units for estate workers no one gave a damn about its condition.”

        I struggle with my support of M & H yet my extreme discomfort with income inequality. No, not discomfort–RAGE.

      • ElleKaye says:

        Frogmore was split into multiple units, so the wiring and plumbing would have been changed when that occurred. The plumbing and wiring would absolutely need to be changed, with restoration where needed. It doesn’t mean the tenants in the apartments were living in squalor, it simply means the historic building suffered damage when it was turned into multiple dwellings. It would take work to restore it into a single family dwelling again.

  4. Oh No says:

    I loved Omid’s Twitter thread. Like before y’all trip, remember what the Cambridge crew spent at KP. If you weren’t upset about that, take this L and have a seat

    Also seems like Frogmore was really rundown, which is unfortunate. I hate seeing the beautiful, historic homes in my area fall to ruin

    • broodytrudy says:

      I love the faux wokeness that’s going on here. Like we’re rewriting history and pretending like people weren’t upset over Will and Kate spending millions of pounds on their renovations-because they were and it’s still noted in the comments sections of these articles. People were pissed then, people are pissed now. Full stop, this isn’t new to Harry and Meg, regardless of the narrative everyone wants to push. Even when I was young and Charles and Diana were together there was constant moaning about the money the RF dumped out.

      Frogmore apparently wasn’t run down when “the help” was staying there, it was good enough for the royals then. 💁‍♀️

      • Oh No says:

        ‘faux wokeness’? There is no injustice going on here, breathe.

        And things like this do require clarification, because there were a lot of new Cambridge fans that became fans as a direct result of not liking Meghan. They like throwin shots without realizing their favs did it beforehand.


      • Olenna says:

        Agree, Oh No. Co-opting and misuing of the term “woke” doesn’t help the OP’s argument. As notasugarhere said above, TQ’s children, three of which are farther down the line to the throne than PH, are living in luxury and no one complains. With all these new posters coming here to complain, I don’t think even one of them has written or called their legislative representative(s) to voice their opinion about how the royals spend their “tax money”. One year, PC spent almost £250,000 traveling via private jet for one trip, and public displeasure lasted a hot minute. The concern trolling and outcries over expenditures when it comes to Meghan is just ridiculous. If people aren’t going to complain about all the royals, then STFU cause it looks real petty and hateful when you only target PH and/or Meghan.

    • Catherine says:

      People were and still are outraged by the Cambridge’s spending at KP and AH

      • Oh No says:

        The people who are brand new weren’t around for that (KP & AH) and that was Omid’s point. If this figure outrages you, keep that energy with your favs

    • Tami says:

      And before KP, they spent a TON at Anmer Hall, then left to live in London. It seems that outrage has died down now that W&K are the favored royals and H&M are not.

  5. skiff says:

    How big is this place? I love how Brits call it a cottage. Pretty sure my idea of cottage and there’s isn’t the same thing. It does seem like a lot to bring it to “normal” standards, and if Harry and Meghan chipped in to make it to a bit higher standard how much was that? I’m not upset with Harry and Meghan about this, but it just seems whenever the monarchy updates a place it’s terribly expensive. I want to be the monarchy’s contractor. Seems like a fairly lucrative deal. Guessing we won’t get but a few pictures primarily for privacy reasons, but also cause people will complain about the costs style etc. Hope they like it, and a floating yoga studio would have been cool too. Kind of sad she’s not granola momming it out.

    • Charlie says:

      I’m pretty sure your idea of a cottage and the royals isn’t the same!

    • Mae says:

      It has four bedrooms and a nursery. I thought it would be bigger but four bedrooms is not that big. I own a five bedroom house so I guess I’m living it up like the royals. Lol. I think that most of the royals live in a house with 20 or more rooms so this seems small in comparison.

    • ToiFilles says:

      The old-monied Vanderbilts & Rockefellers also used “cottage” when referring to their lavish water front summer homes along the upper East Coast. Google “The Breakers”. I toured that one during summer holiday – it had a enormous marble bathroom sporting a marble tub with separate taps: one to pump water from the city, and one to pump in salt water from the Atlantic.

      On the flip side, Hammersmith Farm (the Auchincloss summer home where the JFK wedding reception was held) was much more modest. Jackie’s childhood bedroom was tucked under the dormer windows & was quite small.

  6. Becks1 says:

    I cant tell what it says about me that I was like, huh. that seems “reasonable.” LOL. Given the work it required, and the fact that I’m sure a lot of the stuff done (especially structural stuff) had to be done per certain regulations for historical structures (I’m assuming at any rate), 3 million seems about right. It doesn’t sound like it was just cosmetic upgrades. I mean, don’t get me wrong, that’s a lot of money and I would love 3 million to upgrade my house, lol, but for the overall context it seems about right.

    I can def understand how this might be a touchy subject right now with Brexit etc.

    Has anyone taken Nottingham Cottage? I wonder if the thought is that Meghan and Harry have Frogmore, and they keep NottCott for late nights in London etc.

    I imagine this will be their only home, I don’t think they’ll have a home farther in the country. I wonder if they’ll get Frogmore House eventually, when Charles is king?

    • Erinn says:

      SAME, girl!

      I read that to my husband this morning, and he was like “do you mean 30 million?” because even to him it was lower than he’d have expected. I am going to bet a GOOD chunk of it was security upgrades.

    • Peg says:

      They’re getting a suite at Buckingham Palace, I don’t think they want to in or near Kensington Palace, it’s too leaky.

      • Becks1 says:

        I cant tell if you mean the staff leaks or the roof leaks, lol.

        A suite at BP also sounds reasonable, because it wouldn’t cost the taxypayers any additional money beyond what BP already costs, right? (Which I know is a lot.)

      • notasugarhere says:

        That has never been confirmed, Pet, it was another tabloid rumor. They cannot get a suite at BP (like Edward and Andrew) because all of BP is undergoing a 10 year renovation. Staff are all being moved out of BP to new office space, which means Andrew and Edward will also need temporary housing in London. If Harry and Meghan need a place in London for overnights in the next 10 years, they might keep Nottingham Cottage or a suite at SJP.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      Frogmore was been pretty much ignored for years, while it was not derelict it needed a LOT of work to bring it up to standard. Also as it was build in 1801 it would have to have been checked for asbestos.

    • Anna says:

      Yeah, I don’t think any of this sounds excessive. I think people are being unnecessarily critical because yes, Harry and Megan get their money from taxpayers. That’s the system and being royals is their jobs. It’s not like Megan would even be allowed to go back into acting if she wanted to.

    • HK9 says:

      I don’t think this is unreasonable either. When you’re restoring a historic home that hasn’t been worked on in some time, this is what it’s going to cost. I’ve seen the bills for historic homes where I live an this is about right.

      • Algernon says:

        I restored a 100 year old home last year. Even with a realistic budget, it was staggeringly expensive. Our house wasn’t even that run down, but it needed a new roof, extensive window repairs, updating systems, floor repairs, leaky basement fix… By the time you get through all the structural stuff, the bill is eye opening.

        ETA: I do understand, especially in a time of economic uncertainty, that people are annoyed with the expense of the royals and want more transparency.

    • skiff says:

      I don’t think the work is excessive, just the cost. The 3 million dollar cost is for structural changes and updates. The house will still need all the upgrades and higher end interior finishes added. At least that’s how I read it. To those who think this is a reasonable cost I have friends who upgraded and redid entire structures of several million dollar homes for much less. Granted the US doesn’t have homes as old as Britain, but definitely from 1800′s even 1700′s and the renovations weren’t that costly. I feel the monarchy and thus the taxpayers are getting ripped off. Maybe when money is not an issue you just don’t know how to spend it.

  7. Karla says:

    I like Meghan, but I also see why this leaves a bad taste in people’s mouth. Royalty is such an outdated institution. Whether it’s Meghan, Kate or the York girls, it’s still bizarre for the public to fund a spoilt, pampered family (who even hide some of their money in tax havens) when so many hardworking Brits are struggling to pay their mortgages.

    I feel like the Meghan love on this page sometimes glosses over the fact that she’s still part of an incredibly out of touch, elitist institution, a symbol of the class system that can only exist as long as it keeps other people down (including women and POC). No matter how much criticism she has to live with, her life is beyond privileged. Renovating your home for 3 million dollars and someone else picking up the bill is an extreme privilege. Living in great wealth and only work part-time is an extreme privilege. Let’s not forget about that.

    And yes, obviously I feel the same way about the Cambridges.

    • minx says:

      It’s quite a scam, and I don’t know why the public puts up with it.

      • Arnk says:

        I cannot believe the “woke” people on this side are excusing the amount of money the royals are constantly spending while some Grenfell victims are still living in temporary homes not knowing when they’re going to get their lives back and some kind of security. That amount of money would have changed everything for them but I guess it’s excusable to spend it on a cottage no one has cared about in a very long time.

        Also the whole “the royals are good for tourism” thing is ridiculous. Without them all of these properties could generate an income as opposed to costing the country a lot of money.

      • minx says:

        Arnk, thank you. Agree.

      • bonobochick says:

        Because they blame the biracial woman and not the white Prince she married whose family actually controls the property.

      • Blue Orange says:

        @bonobochick – she chose the life she’s living.

    • Jessica says:

      I like Meghan BUT!!!!!!!

      I’m just kidding. It just think it’s weird people feel the need to do that.

    • Myra says:

      This is how the British set up their government. So much outrage over 3 million but the other 52 million was ok….really!

      • alice says:

        There’s outrage about all the money, tbh. This is a celeb site and Meghan is a celeb so now it’s being scrutinised here, but there’s always been unease and criticism about the money the royals get from taxpayers. They are a super rich family and really shouldn’t be getting any money from anyone.

    • Kylie says:

      But even if the Monarchy went away, the palaces and castle would need to be renovated in order to be safe for tours. A big problem is that they don’t really do maintenance work on any of the unused buildings. So when something happens, like it is a space that any royal is moving into, the cost to make it safe is astronomical.

      • Anna says:

        Yeah, these repairs would still need to be made, unless all of the historical buildings are going to be allowed to collapse over time. Doesn’t matter if Megan and Harry are living in it, or if the buildings are just used for tours…they’re old buildings and need repaired.

      • Becks1 says:

        This is a good point. If the monarchy goes away, and these buildings are just used for tourism, they would still have to be maintained.

      • Anon says:

        But then they would truly belong to the people who would be able to view them in their entirety. Why does someone have to be living in the royal properties? It seems that more people would come, increasing tourism revenue, if there was more to see.

      • Amne says:

        Yes, but a privileged person wouldn’t get to live in them for free just because they’re lucky enough to be born into a certain family. They’d be paid for by the people and used purely for public purposes.

      • Marina says:

        Once the Royal Family go- hopefully after Charles- the National Trust, Scottish Trust, Cadw and English Heritage will be the custodians and will be open to the public (like in France) to generate income.

      • Polly says:

        Those buildings could be turned into hotels, schools, care homes, etc. A lot of stately homes were used for convalescence during both WW1 and WW2 so they’ve been useful in the past and in my opinion should be again. The public should not be paying for the upkeep of private residences.

      • minx says:

        Polly— yes. How many residences do these families need? Sure, renovate them but then put them to good use. And honestly, does every last old building need to be saved? Maybe some of them are just beyond repair and should be leveled.

    • Peg says:

      So sorry we’re not kicking Meghan to make you feel better. Meghan is living in Frogmore Cottage by herself and it’s leaving a bad taste in people’s mouth.
      I usually laugh when I read “I love Meghan” because you know it’s going to be some hang wringing coming.

      • Karla says:

        Kicking Meghan would not make me happy, and honestly, there is nothing in my post that would indicate that. I was talking about an institution that Meghan is a part of. I also never said I love Meghan, I said I like her. And I do. She seems like a lovely person. But you can be lovely and still part of something negative that should be abolished.

    • Becks1 says:

      Honestly, Karla, I agree with you. I like the royal family for the gossip and history aspects, but if I think about it too much, I kind of scratch my head. It is an out of touch and elitist institution. I guess every country has something though, right? For us, its the electoral college (well, among other things.)

      • bonobochick says:

        @becks1, I am surprised cause Karla’s post reeks of sexism in which only Meghan or other women are mentioned + blamed.

    • ADS says:

      I think it is strange that you have only named female royals here? Am I misunderstanding something?

      Also, £2.4 m in renovations on a listed property of that size in the UK is perfectly reasonable. And considering the property is owned by the Crown estate and not the couple themselves, it would be unreasonable to require them to pay for it. In any event I suspect Harry and Meghan may have put in significant amounts of their own money to get it completely up to spec. There are laws in this country that govern the upkeep and renovation of listed buildings (inside and out). You have got to do renovations and repairs in a particular way – sometimes down to the use of particular materials. This is true even of private listed dwellings owned by private individuals. So the way the Meghan hating press is reporting on this (in England) is disingenuous. And thankfully is already being called out.

      • Karla says:

        I only mentioned female royals because most discussions on this page are about them.

      • E says:

        No, the costs are not reasonable at all- you clearly don’t live in an older property. I live in a house built in the early 1900s and £2.4 million is excessive, to say the least. It would be interesting to see who and how the renovators tendered this work, as someone seems to be making a big profit somewhere along the line.

      • notasugarhere says:

        You cannot compare whatever historic house you are in to Frogmore Cottage, and what is required to make that listed historic building up to code. Apple and oranges.

    • Darla says:

      I agree with minx that it’s a scam all around. With Brexit and the cratering of services for the poor, I absolutely understand the outrage. I don’t think it’s phony at all.

    • Spicecake38 says:

      No matter what royal this is or how much or little has been spent,the basic takeaway I shake my head at is that rich people are getting things for little to no cost.The irony never fails me -wealthy people living off of middle class and poor people just never is alright.

    • skiff says:

      There are so many stories where Meghan is unfairly scrutinized or bullied really. This isn’t one of them. Unless you take it as Meghan is the reason it costs 3 million, which I don’t really see most articles doing. The costs of the royals for things like this is excessive. Kate and William were scrutinized for the same thing with their renovations. Reality is the the royal family lives a lot off the public dime and these kind of comments have been going on for a while. It’s part of being a British royal today, and they need to learn to live with it and hopefully make it better.

    • kerwood says:

      Why is Meghan being held responsible for the cost of renovating a run-down old house? The house was in possession of Harry’s family. THEY’RE the ones responsible for letting it fall down.

      Why aren’t the wolves baying for HARRY’S blood? Could it be, oh don’t know…….RACISM?!?!?

    • Jadedone says:

      Karla I couldn’t agree more. To me the royal family is just the oldest form of nepotism.

    • bonobochick says:

      I mean, Meghan is living in that cottage all by herself, amirite?

    • entine says:

      yeah, weird how no-one said much actually until Meghan came into the picture. Yes, some criticism here and there, but oh, the outrage with this particular family and not so much others. Duchess spender, duchess, this duchess that. yawn.

  8. Peg says:

    The list of BS, that the Media made up.
    Home birth
    Apartment for Doria
    Doria moving to the UK
    The cost of Meghan’s jewelry
    Floating yoga floor
    Gender fluid child
    Tiara fight
    Meghan crossing her legs is breaking protocol
    Meghan breathing is breaking protocol
    The list is endless.

    • Moses says:

      But Peg, this isn’t made up. These are real figures. You can say, “this tabloid or that picks on Meghan,” and you’re probably right, but in this case, the three million spent is fact. People will have opinions on that.

      • Anna says:

        Except that previously, tabloids were reporting the three million was spent on a yoga studio when in fact the money was spent making the home SAFE. One of those costs is perfectly reasonable. People can have all opinions they want. If I were Megan and Harry, I’d want a house that was up to code, too.

      • Peg says:

        did I add the 3 million to the List?
        Waiting for your reply.

      • Moses says:

        No, peg, you sure didn’t. I guess, based on the tone of your comment, I assumed you thought this was made up too. But nah, this was just some redirection on your part. “Don’t look at the £3 mil we know they spent, look over here at this other stuff!”

      • ADS says:

        The spend needs to be looked at in the context of a listed building (which means that renovations are subject to strict regulation and are inevitably more expensive than if the building were not listed), owned but the Crown and not the couple themselves.

      • MsIam says:

        @ Moses The total budget is $55 million for all properties. Don’t forget to mention that too in your litany of outrage on spending. So what was spent on Frogmore was less than 10% of the total budget. And it’s not like every year they will spend $3 million, these renovations are for the long haul. Yes the RF should have been updating and maintaining the Frogmore all along but that has nothing to do with Meghan. Old buildings cost a lot of money to maintain, period.

      • Jaded says:

        Moses, a good part of the cost would have been for security systems. When you consider the multitude of crazies who write such shocking, hateful comments in the media, there’s probably at least one who would love to take down a member of the royal family.

    • IlsaLund says:

      Don’t forget the latest one about how Meghan made changes and redesigned Diana’s engagement ring. I actually saw that headline and went, huh? Kate has Diana’s engagement ring. But because Harry used some of Diana’s diamonds in the ring, it is now magically Diana’s engagement ring. They can’t ever win…smdh

      • Babyswans says:

        Perhaps you misread a headline? The ones I read yesterday were that they had her engagement ring redesigned. I was curious and zoomed in on some pictures and yes, her engagement ring has been redesigned. The band is thinner, is lined with small diamonds, and the original stones are set “flatter”.

      • IlsaLund says:

        @Babyswans. No I didn’t read the headline wrong:

        Meghan Markle Is Slammed For Redesigning Princess Diana’s Engagement Ring: “It’s A Piece Of History, Not Jewelry”

      • MsIam says:

        Wow, people have gone batsh!t crazy, lol!

      • Olenna says:

        Yes, people are actually complaining that Meghan ruined a piece of “history” (despite PH being only 6th in line and unimportant in their minds), and that she simultaneously disrespected PH by independently, and without his consent, altered the band and setting. Some on Twitter are actually saying that the ring isn’t really hers; it should be part of the royal collection when she goes (they are adamant she will be either jailed or divorced, then exiled) and she had no right to alter it. These psychos contradict themselves and project their madness at every turn.

  9. Duchess of Hazard says:

    Royal expenses have increased year on year. There is no breakdowns as to who spends what. I think the figure is incomplete because I that’s the money spent at the tax cut off point (so it could be closer to £3.5 million). I can’t wait for the Queen to go because it’s loyalty to her and what she represents why there isn’t as much push back as there should be. For instance, why is Prince Phillip collecting £350k a year although he’s been retired for the past two years. Also, the BRF is at great pains to say that the Queen tops up his money because the amount isn’t enough. 🙄

    There needs to be more transparency, tbh. We have been in the throes of austerity for the past 9 years whilst the BRF have had house hold increases of 41 percent.

    • Becks1 says:

      What do you mean, Philip collects 350k a year? he gets a salary?

      • Millenial says:

        Sounds like it’s the money for his private secretary, maybe another staffer. I’m sure those folks stay busy even though he’s retired.

      • HMC says:

        I wonder if that’s money set aside for a caretaker. Apparently he lives separately from the queen and he is quite elderly.

      • duchess of hazard says:

        @Becks1 – When Philip was still doing Royal duties, he’d get a salary for upkeep (to be fair, he did a lot), but now that he’s retired, he’s still getting £350k a year, but the BRF hasn’t told us, the public as to why. Supposedly that it’s not enough and the Queen tops up the monies, as said before.

        @HMC – that might be a point in terms of say, he isn’t supposed to be driving anymore but still… that is a LOT and he doesn’t have to worry about paying for lodgings or TV licences.

    • Arnk says:

      People love the queen and she looks like a cute old lady but she’s beyond shady in her dealings.

      • Tourmaline says:

        Yeah there is going to be a major reckoning when she is gone. A lot of the stuff that many put up with due to her being a respected living institution isn’t going to fly anymore.

  10. Dueberrygal says:

    The problem is Harry & Meghan have set themselves up as being a modern ‘normal’ couple who will do things differently to W&K. We keep getting told how these two are individually wealthy so why not pay for the entire renovations themselves? They want the perks of royal life but none of the constraints. They are no better than the others.

    • Oh No says:

      I get that, but my thinking is, why pay for renos yourself on a place you can’t ever truly own. Either way it’s an insane amount of money, but I’m happy to know they didn’t add more kitchens

      • IlsaLund says:

        Exactly. Why would anyone pay for major renovations on a property you’d never own. I know I wouldn’t do it. These are public properties that the Royals live in. It’s unfortunate that taxpayer’s money is used but until the Monarchy is abolished, then that’s how it’s going to be. All anyone can do is vent their frustration.

      • Peg says:

        The kitchen is going to be renovated, six months was not enough time to renovated a house with so much work needed.
        Priority went to the structural damage, roof, heating, and plumbing.

      • Mae says:

        I think of the royals that live in these places as basically house sitters. They don’t own the deeds to these places and if the monarchy is abolished or if another monarch chooses to evict them, then they have to leave. So why should they pay for the renovation of a property that they will never own.

        Imagine having to live somewhere dilapidated and falling apart, and told by the landlord that you have to pay for the renovations even though you don’t own the place. Nope, the landlord should be the one who pays. But if you want to do cosmetic updates like paint the walls then you have to pay yourself. And of course any furnishing you would have to pay for and bring in yourself. This is essentially how I interpret things are with royals who live in these properties. The state (landlords) pay for the structural renovations and the royals (house sitters) pay for the cosmetic/furnishing etc.

      • Dueberrygal says:

        It depends what you mean by ‘own’. Those that don’t own their own home still have to pay rent but H&M aren’t paying a dime on rent! The house has been gifted to them & it is theirs to live in for the rest of their lives, so that’s pretty much like owning it.

        Living rent free for life & asking taxpayers to pay for your renovations looks pretty bad regardless of how it is spun.

    • Peg says:

      They don’t own Frogmore Cottage.

    • skiff says:

      If the monarchy stays after Elizabeth, I agree with Charles it needs to be reduced. It just seems too excessive for the country. I think it should just be the reigning monarch and obviously his/her family with the minor children. This means both William and Harry should be out for a while along with all of Charles brothers and sisters. Obviously, you might have to phase this in, but it could be a good time to start as most of Charles brothers and sisters will be in retirement years anyway. I know Anne and some of the others do a lot of royal engagements and cutting ribbons, but is all that really needed. I just feel like it could be paired down, and it gives at least the ones who are most likely not going to be King/Queen a chance to be a bit more political and less tied to the excess.

    • WANDERING*EYE says:

      They never said they want to be modern. These were all made up by the press.

  11. Becks1 says:

    Comment disappeared

  12. Sassy says:

    You guys do realize that Frogmore cott would be renovated whether they lived there or not because it’s a historic place. Carry on being fake outraged.

  13. Flying fish says:

    3 million is a lot of money. Harry inherited millions from his mother, he could have spent his own money…

    • ADS says:

      On a listed house that is not his? Would you do that?

      • Flying fish says:

        Yes, if I was Harry, I would buy my own. I own my home, it did not cost 3 mil but it is mine.
        Harry could do the same, he can afford it.

      • notasugarhere says:

        And be criticized for taxpayer money spent securing his private property from the white nationlists who plotted to kill him as a race traitor.

      • Jaded says:

        So Harry buys his own house, but has to have a large property and home made secure which would cost millions. It’s a moot point. The money had to be spent to make Frogmore livable, or spent installing security systems on a piece of private property and reasonably large home.

    • WANDERING*EYE says:

      spend his own money??? yet the Queen uses H and Meghan for royal engagements and duties. The time spent working for the monarchy , they could use to relax and have some quality time as a couple. Do we question when theyre used fro these duties? if H & M should use their own money then they should not be sent on any royal duties. simple.

  14. Steph says:

    What does “publicly owned” mean? I can book a trip to England and go to their house? It has to be open certain days of the year?
    I also got a kick outta you calling it little. Reminds me of a property here in the city that I’ve been in love with and watching for 15 years. Comes with a “small” carriage house that’s currently divided into 2 two bedroom apartments, a studio, and a large office space. It’s only small bc the main house has 10 bedrooms and a pool both in the house and in the back yard.

    • IlsaLund says:

      Publicly owned means the government, i.e., taxpayers technically own the properties. Just like the White House and Number One Observatory Circle (VP’s residence) are public property. The government owns and maintains those buildings. The President and Vice President are responsible for renovations to the private family spaces. Just cause it’s publicly owned, doesn’t mean anyone can just walk in there at anytime

    • ADS says:

      “What does “publicly owned” mean? I can book a trip to England and go to their house?”

      A lot of these places (palaces, etc.) are actually open to the public. I work near Buckingham Palace and the tourists are always in full effect! You can also visit Frogmore House if you want to. More info: :)

  15. Kate says:

    A floating floor is nothing special, it is a technique for laying hardwoods that doesn’t require gluing or nailing the planks down

    • Abby says:

      Right? We have floating wood floors, because that’s what the manufacturer requires. It’s a method of installation. I actually hate it—they squeak when you walk on them because the installer didn’t do it correctly. It is not luxurious. Unless I’m misunderstanding the term.

    • Aang says:

      I think they might have meant sprung floor. It is used in gymnasiums and dance studios to prevent impact injuries. We had one installed in the area my daughter uses for dance practice.

  16. Lisa says:

    That seems reasonable to me given the state of the property.

    • Harla says:

      I agree Lisa. It sounds as though the building was completely gutted and rebuilt. I imagine that much of the cost went into plumbing and electrical work as both costs are what eat up most home improvement funds.

  17. Maria says:

    So….the structural damage of the home itself had to be repaired and that cost public money, but it states right here that anything else was done with private money from Harry and Meghan…

  18. Robinda says:

    I don’t really have an opinion one way or the other on British renovations of historical residences, I’m American and not paying for it, but I do think that this stuff about the Royals paying for anything above a certain standard is just nonsense. Unless you’re going to specify what the regular standard is, this is meaningless. It’s not like the standard is going to be appliances from Sears. The standard for a royal residence is already going to be something most of us have only seen in magazines, but they drop this very ambiguous bit about them paying for a more bespoke version. How does that conversation go, “Here are the best appliances on the planet for free, did you want something else instead?” The taxpayers ought to demand more transparency, if nothing else.

  19. RoyalBlue says:

    It’s very reasonable given the state of the historic property and work needed to the gas lines and electrical rework and never mind the structural upgrades. Some people say a home is an asset but I like to joke that it is a liability given the never ending issues that arise and costs to maintain. Once one thing is sorted another thing goes wrong.

    I am also happy they pointed out the furniture and curtains etc were paid privately. That makes perfect sense. Now I wish I were getting invited to tea.

  20. Polly says:

    The monarchy owns a lot of land, what I don’t understand is why they don’t just build their own regular-sized eco-home from scratch in the grounds of one of the many Royal estates. The house wouldn’t need to be absolutely palatial in size and a modern building wouldn’t need constant repairs. There’s no rule that Royals have to live in old buildings right? They could still have the same level of privacy and security. Just a thought.

    • Mae says:

      I think it’s sort of like killing two birds with one stone. These historic places needed to be renovated and updated anyway and the royals need a home. So why not live in the place that is being renovated anyway.

    • duchess of hazard says:

      @Polly, buildings do need people. In that as long as people are living there, the place is being maintained, instead of being left alone to rot. The issue is the fact that whilst the rest of us are still under austerity measures and told that there’s no money tree for schools, the NHS or public housing, the Royal family are able to access the public purse without a care for expenses.

    • notasugarhere says:

      The “monarchy” is not Elizabeth Windsor. Kensington Palace, Buckingham Palace, Saint James Palace, Windsor Castle, Frogmore House, Frogmore Cottage, Highgrove House. None of those belong to any member of the Windsor family. They are owned by the public, ergo public money is used to maintain. Many properties within those buildings/estates are leased out to members of the general public.

      If we’re talking private properties like Balmoral, Sandringham, and Gatcombe Park? I’m all for the books being ripped open and demanding no taxpayer money be used for those properties. The royals are provided taxpayer owned and funded housing, very nice taxpayer funded housing. If the royals want to spent time living on these private properties, they have to be responsible for all of those costs themselves especially security.

  21. Melissa says:

    People complain about royal spending every year, so why not just get rid of the royal family? Those palaces and buildings take a lot of money to upkeep. Instead of having royals, why not just open up all the royal properties for tours and events?

    • duchess of hazard says:

      @Melissa – I think a lot of people are waiting for the Queen to die, tbh. Even the most ardent of anti-monarchists do respect the Queen, and what she’s meant during the war years (she helped with the war effort, and the Royal Family stayed in London when Churchill wanted them to be squired away in Scotland) as well as being a constant in decades of change.

      Prince Charles and his sons don’t really command that same level of affection that the Queen does, so once she goes, I think the noises will get louder and the comments more pointed.

  22. Mego says:

    This seems like a fairly modest expense for a very dilapidated property that practically had to be rebuilt.

    In contrast:

    Thirty years ago the Queen gifted Andrew and Sarah with a brand new 15 million dollar mansion in Berkshire called Sunninghill Park. After the divorce a few years later the place was let go into ruin and was demolished by the new owner to rebuild.


    How much was the cost of the rebuild of a perfectly good kitchen at Amner again?

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      Lets not forget that the renovations for Apt 1A was £4mill, a cost that included a brand new kitchen (and a refit of an existing one). KP is a well kept and modern building, the renovations were originally to turn the then offices spaces into a home – IIRC the original quote for the work wasn’t that high but it ended up being £4mill due to the ‘extra’ work they DoLittles wanted done (inc. a granny suite for Carole). Even after all the work was done it was 2 years before they actually lived there.

      Yes the money from the SG is there to upkeep the buildings but the Royals have used this money to pay for renovation work that has nothing really to do with the upkeep of the buildings. Things like extra kitchens etc..

      • Lexa says:

        It sounds like Apartment 1A was in pretty terrible shape before the renovations. I don’t think it had been really updated since Margaret first moved in in the 60s, let alone her death in 2002. They had to remove asbestos from the walls and update the heating, water, and electrical in the building. I’m guessing the primary difference between FC and 1A in cost has to do 1A having 20 rooms in total, and FC half that. My understanding is that there’s a family kitchen and two other kitchens, one for staff and the other is a bigger one that’s used for entertaining?

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        ^ There was a lot of work done on 1A when it was converted into offices after Margaret – much of the £4.5mill that was spent on it for the Cambridges went on roof repairs, the asbestos removal and the remodelling of all the 20 rooms (they were made into reception rooms, a day and night nursery, bathrooms, additional kitchens, ancillary rooms, dressing rooms, bedrooms etc..). Frogmore was in a far worse condition that Ap 1A at KP with the original quote for the KP 1A work being something around £2.5 mill (which as I say earlier the work ended up being almost double that).

      • notasugarhere says:

        Apartment 1A was actively being used by Historic Royal Palaces for office and exhibit space. Extra money had to be paid to evict them from that property, which is much larger than 20 rooms. It has 8-10 staff bedrooms on the top floor alone.

      • Mary says:

        Ultimately, the bill for Apt. 1a came in at over 6.5 million pounds. This figure does not even include the reno costs for Anmer. As others have mentioned this is all just faux outrage. We already knew what the approximate costs would be for the refurbishment of Frogmore Cottage would be. From what are they trying to distract us?

        BTW, have they changed the report or am I thinking of a different one – where is the report that tells how much Charles pays to support the different households? And how much the households specifically spend. I looked at this report and did not see it.

    • Tourmaline says:

      And speaking of Sunninghill Park, it was sold in a suspicious transaction to a Kazakh oligarch who interestingly was willing to pay much more than the asking price. Peak Andrew Grift.

      • Mego says:

        The York shadiness is what is making my eyes roll at all of the York positive press trickling out in the past year. The racist press would have us believe that poor Meghan is so much worse than them because the tax payer is spending sooo much to renovate Frogmore 🙄 i swear if I hear the words “floating floor” one more time I will scream. Didn’t know floating floors were such a huge deal in the UK. They are pretty common where I live.

      • Brandy Alexander says:

        @Mego – what IS a floating floor? I’ve never heard that phrase before this post.

      • Mego says:

        Brandy – it’s flooring that is not glued to a sub floor basically. The UK media must think it’s made of solid gold the way they keep yammering about it at Frogmore. Reports today say said floor/yoga studio didn’t happen. So they make stuff up and conflate it to the point of fury and then oh it didn’t happen. Bonkers.

    • notasugarhere says:

      It was also questionable because part of Windsor Great Park was sold to Andrew and Sarah as private property in the deal. Now he lives in massive Royal Lodge Windsor.

  23. line says:

    I can understand that british taxpayers are paying for the renovations costs for Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and Clarence House, because they are not only private residences but Frogmore and Anmer Hall are private residences that are not going to be used for royal duties. So why the taxpayers finance this renovations, they are all enough money to pay for all the renovations costs.

    I think of the death of the queen, it will be necessary who clarifies their expenses because the British will not be so lenient.

    • Becks1 says:

      this would make sense going forward, but also add in Windsor Castle for upkeep etc.

      Honestly, the queen should not have gifted will and kate Anmer. She should have given them the London home (KP or wherever), and that be it. that would have set a nice precedent for Harry and Meghan – one official London home, not meant to be your forever family home. (And honestly, I kind of think that was what she did with H&M, gave them frogmore instead of two houses.) But, by not giving Will and Kate a country home, she would have saved money. Will and Kate could have bought a house on their own, paid for renovations, etc. That would have set the precedent for H&M to do the same.

    • ytmer says:

      Anmer Hall is part of the Sandringham Estate– the queen’s personal property. The renovations at Anmer were paid by the queen or Charles’ private funds. Not that it doesn’t all come from the taxpayer eventually, of course.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Highgrove House was purchased by the Duchy of Cornwall at Charles’s request. He doesn’t own it, Duchy money was spent fixing it up and maintaining it, it is not used for any royal events or business, and the general public isn’t allowed inside. But the public owns it and pays for it, because the Duchies are public property at the end of the day.

      Frogmore Cottage is part of Windsor Castle and is public property. Frogmore Cottage was already slated for structural, electrical etc. renovations and updates. Image the furor if they’d been offered Frogmore House to live in instead.

      Anmer is part of Elizabeth Windsor’s private estate, Sandringham. She put the Kents up there for 20 years free, but it was also rented for profit to the Van Cutsems and later the kitchen designers. The Queen didn’t gift W&K Anmer Hall, they are living there free but they don’t own it. Like Harry and Meghan don’t own Frogmore Cottage.

      The problem with them purchasing private estates, aside from optics, is that taxpayer funding is used to secure it. There was talk W&K were looking to buy a country home, then Anmer was emptied and W&K moved into it. The optics were a little less bad because they’re living in a house Elizabeth Windsor already owns personally. On an estate that is already secured by taxpayers (but shouldn’t be IMO). Like Philip moving to Wood Farm instead of Frogmore House as was rumored for years. If Philip wasn’t still alive, we might have seen Harry and Meghan living at Wood Farm.

      Anne’s private estate was fixed up with Crown Estate funds and is secured with taxpayer money. Her kids will inherit an estate worth millions, much of which came out of the taxpayers pocket. The Sunninghill Park example mentioned above is another good one.

      Royals purchasing private property still means taxpayer money spent on securing those private properties. The Dutch royals have gotten a lot of criticism for this, with vacation homes purchased in Argentina, Mozambique, and Greece but secured by taxpayers.

      IMO no taxpayer money should be spent on anything the royals own privately, whether it is for upgrades or security. The historic properties that are taxpayer owned? Those need to be maintained with taxpayer money, and if you throw working royals in them for housing I’m okay with it. As the number of working royals decreases, the number of royal housing projects should also decrease.

  24. Myra says:

    I read that it cost $1.70/British person. Does anyone know how the British pay this tax?

  25. Chef Grace says:

    Privy Purse.
    Sounds like a bag you would stash toilet paper in.

  26. Canadian says:

    Canadians give the Sovereign and her provincial and federal Governor General offices over 50 million a year. I wish we were a republic also, and that royals would live off their own purses, not ours. All of them, not just the Sussexes.

  27. Eliza says:

    The Gloucesters are moving out of Kensington Palace this summer. I always believed their huge apartment was meant for Harry, otherwise why reno the inside, add privacy trees, and redo the roof during the planned exit of Gloucesters. It was good enough while they lived there. But with the War of the Wales brothers Frogmore became option #2. Unlike Will/Kates KP apartment, the Gloucesters was already living space (not offices) or Frogmore (converting 5 apartments into one) it wouldn’t need a huge multi million dollar overhaul. Or at least because the work was spread out over time it would not tally up in an annual reports as a 3mil bill. Remember Frogmore was not finished until just before baby so there’s probably more bills unaccounted for in 2018 books.

    I don’t think any of this outrage is specific to Meghan, this time, it’s just every year more and more millions are spent on private homes of the royals. I think people are less annoyed at the Buck updates because some parts are so badly cared for its dire (and people are mad it got that bad) and at least ticket sales help a portion of costs.

    • Peg says:

      Is Meghan the only one living at Frogmore Cottage?

      • Eliza says:

        The reason i put “specific to Meghan” is because the press are out to get her. And make everything her fault (which is horrible). I’m just saying in this one case, it wouldn’t matter the royal, there would still be thousands of comments calling them “spongers”

    • HMC says:

      The press is setting the tone, making it quite specific to Meghan, as if Prince Harry doesn’t live there and had no say in whatever decisions were made. Plus there was a build up to the outrage, it’s been simmering ever since the press started reporting, “according to sources” that there was a yoga studio, 10 bedrooms, etc.

  28. violet says:

    I think part of the problem here is that Harry is sixth in line. He may be Charles’s son, but he’s already way down the line. The other problem is that Meghan hasn’t been too savvy about the amounts she’s spent on clothes and how much of it was by non-British design houses. Kensington Palace is a historic building and, yeah, Williiam and Kate are already much farther up the food chain and are only going to move farther up as time goes on, as are their kids, so the public didn’t get as riled up about those renovations. That’s the way hereditary monarchy works.

    Charles is worth $400 million personally. He’s well able to afford something like this, and he should have seen the optics of a sixth in line with a wife who only grudgingly once in awhile wears British made clothes having their rather undistinuished home expensively renovated so Harry can live the way a royal duke is supposed to. He should have bought them a nicer home or paid for the renovations.

    • Eliza says:

      People were mad about Williams spending. I think it was 6-7 million. They don’t care he’s son of the son. He spent 7 million in tax payers money when he’s a million and his dad’s a millionaire and his grannies wealth is so vast it can’t be properly estimated.

    • Nic919 says:

      If only the Uk tabloid headlines weren’t blaming the spending on Meghan alone but they are. While there were articles about the KP renos and multiple kitchens, they weren’t solely blaming Kate for it. There is a difference in the coverage of the renovations and it’s almost like Meghan is living at a Frogmore on her own without her infant baby and husband.

      • Lexa says:

        There were a number of headlines calling out “Two/Three Kitchens Kate” and stories centered on her and her mistakes (like having to repaint rooms). It’s irritating that the women catch most of the heat, like their husbands don’t live there or make design choices, too.

    • Lady D says:

      You have no idea what she’s spent on clothes, none whatsoever. You can read about the amount others say she spent, you can guesstimate how much they cost, but truthfully you don’t have a clue what she spent on clothes in the last year, none of us do.
      Her desire to not choose British designers I have no explanation for. It would be such an easy way for her to please her new home’s population. I understand she has her own tastes and favourite designers, but I think this is a misstep for her.

    • upstate diva says:

      Last year 1.4m was spent on the roof of Apartment 1, where HMQ cousins the D/D of Gloucester live. They are working royals and much further down the line of succession than Harry. I went back to look because for months the tabs were CERTAIN that that money was being spent on digs for Meghan (and, incidentally, Harry) who were going to off the elderly cousins. Once the Frogmore Cottage was announced, that money all of a sudden did not matter to anyone.
      I am not British, so I do not get a say inwhether it is “worth it”, but I do think it is note-worthy that the main headline for the publication of this annual reckoning is all about MEGHAN as though she came up with this system of expenditure and as though all the working members of the family who live in Windsor or Kensington do not also get their homes taken care of in this way.
      If you know anything about an organization that manages many properties (like universities), there has to be an ongoing list of priorities for repair and upgrades in order to take on deferred maintenance. And I imagine the DM for these super old buildings is hideous all around.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Harry and Meghan will soon be 1/3 of the working royal family. They will be important and active for 30 years, sorry to disappoint.

      Go check out Apartment 1A, Anmer Hall, Royal Lodge, and Bagshot Park. Then come back and say Harry and Meghan’s place is too big.

      Charles is not personally worth 400 million, as he doesn’t own the Duchy of Cornwall. The big private wealth is still in Elizabeth’s hands, including the private estates of Sandringham and Balmoral

  29. SnowMonkey says:

    When considering this issue in isolation, it can be argued that it is a reasonable expense, e.g. royal /historical property, tourism, security.

    When you put it in context, for me, the argument loses ground. Whilst it is a historical property, it is in essence of the private family home for three people – that’s it.

    Compare Frogmore to other buildings of historical significance or ones promote tourism. Take ZSL London Zoo which welcomes 1.25 m visitors every year (tourism). It was opened in 1828 (historical) and is doing critical work in the area of conversation. The Aquarium, in existence since 1853 was opened by King George and Queen Mary. Fun fact – London Aquarium was also the origin of the word aquarium!

    Not fun fact – the aquarium will close this year due to a lack of funding. All the history gone, the conservation work curtailed and all the tools for teaching generations to come -gone.

    How much could keep it open? c. £3m. A bit more would give the listed buildings a complete overhaul, securing its future.

    I like H&M but it is a question of priorities and I know where I would want my taxes to go and it would not be to fund the home of an extremely wealthy family .

    • Myra says:

      Where would you spend your $1.70?

      • SnowMonkey says:

        There is no transparency to the cost of the BRF. As mentioned above, security costs which is one of the largest components are not included in the £1.72.

        As for your question, my contribution would go to something that benefits the many, not the few.

    • Becks1 says:

      But its not like the money would have gone to the aquarium if M&H didn’t renovate Frogmore. Its part of the sovereign grant so presumably would have gone somewhere else royal-related. Or are you over the royal family in general? (again, not adversarial, genuinely curious.) I asked above but no responses. I think its one thing to say that the royal family should be abolished, no more sovereign grant, no more duchy of cornwall, etc, and another thing to blame H&M because the money isn’t going to a different(better) purpose.

      • MsIam says:

        +1000 @ Becks1

      • SnowMonkey says:

        Fair challenge. You are correct, funds would not be re-directed to the aquarium. My point was to compare and contrast projects – - highlighting what £3m of spend can deliver and the benefits to the community. Why we as a country fund the lifestyle of the extremely wealthy but do not fund important institutions? £3m is a lot of money to many (charitable) organisations. I am sceptical of this spend given the legitimate questions of how the sovereign grant is managed.

        This is not about H&M at all – no blame or shade there – this it about how we, as a nation, blindly support this outdated institution. And you guessed it 😊 I am a republican (UK not GOP). I respect HM but when she dies, there needs to be a change.

      • Becks1 says:

        Snowmonkey – thanks for answering. Your POV makes sense to me. I don’t blame Brits who don’t want to fund the royal family in general, they do cost a lot of money that could be spent elsewhere.

  30. Beech says:

    The UK has a constitutional monarchy. Unhappy with it? Change it. Except to do so would be a universe of the cumbersome. Like the time there was a movement to add an amendment to the US Constitution which was on it’s way but was waylaid by the GOP. Little thing called the Equal Rights Amendment, ERA. The fight to stop it gave rise to the right winger Phyllis Schafly, sp, cannot be bothered to check the spelling. Grumble all you want but is there are any UK politicos calling the royals to account? Yeah I didn’t think so.

    • Tina says:

      We get to complain about the royals even if the country won’t get rid of them. Just like you get to complain about your president despite the fact that he is in power because of your antiquated electoral college. (And when Comrade Corbyn is in power, we’ll see what happens to the royals).

  31. Mirage says:

    On another note, is it true that Frogmore Cottage is on the Heathrow planes routes?
    I went to Kew Gardens last year and the visit was not as relaxing as I expected because of the plane noises every 5 minutes!
    I couldn’t bear this level of noise on a daily basis.

  32. MousyB says:

    As a non-Brit, Im wondering if the reason people havent completely abolished the monarchy is because of the Queen. She always shows up and does her job and is well loved. Charles – not as much. I wonder if people will start to see the monarchy differently and their use for society once he takes the crown…I also think all this spending will look worse and worse as the UK’s social safety net starts to crumble in the wake of Brexit.

    ALSO as much as I admire Meghan, I think people on here are starting to forget she is still part of an antiquated and by nature elitist institution. While she is certainly not to blame for this and seems to want to do meaningful charity work, the mere existence of the monarchy and what it represents is the antithesis of all that.

    • Myra says:

      Probable because you have a minority complaining about their $1.70 that they don’t actually contribute

      • Eliza says:

        That sum doesn’t account for security and many other costs. And the amount of money they could bring in by tourism by opening up all these publicly owned royal residences that are now occupied with people getting renovations paid by the public. Add in the amount of wealth they have and how they don’t have to report their taxes they’re probably not putting into the system what everyone else is

      • MousyB says:

        @Myra Some genuine questions: Are you British and what value do you think the royal family brings? Proportionately they don’t bring that much in tourism (1 out of around 500 billion pounds annually) and as various social safety nets are disappearing or diminishing, I can see why it would make more sense for UK society if those tax dollars were spent there and not on royals but I’m curious to hear your opinion if youre British!

      • leena says:

        Wonder how much presidential security would cost. Just a left-field thought.

      • Myra says:

        MousyB: American that pays six figures in US taxes yearly and I can’t justify how it’s spent. I’m sure Trump spends at least 15% of it on golfing. My point is until the majority of British people decide to change their government they will continue to pay $1.75 for the RF. Hopefully Americans vote Trump out so that I can stop paying for his golf and hamburgers!

      • Tina says:

        I’d like my £1.72 (it’s actually more than that when you add the cost of security and the Duchies) spent on the NHS please.

    • MousyB says:


      I would think less for presidential security because there are fewer people? One president and their family vs all the members of the royal family (queen/prince phillip, charles/camilla, will/kate and fam, and harry/meghan and fam. I dont know if minor royals like andrew/fergie get security so if so its probably even more.

      But maybe presidential security as a whole requires more so it could come out around the same? Who knows – interesting question!

      • HMC says:

        A conservative estimate (since it doesn’t have to be fully disclosed) is that Trump’s 4 trips to Mar-A-Lago cost the tax payers over $13 million. That’s about 1 million a day for security and expenses.

        His two older sons got full Secret Service protection for their overseas trips without the President. I’d say we’re getting less bang for our buck than the British public are from Meghan and Harry.

      • Becks1 says:

        The trumps presidential security costs a LOT. I’ve seen figures but can’t remember now of course, ha. But for example, when he golfs (Mar a Lago, Bedminster, wherever), his SS agents go with him, obviously. And they rent golf carts. So he gets that money from their rental fees. Its that kind of stuff that adds up beyond the general cost of the agents. And considering he has four children who get SS protection (I don’t think tiffany does, and I certainly think Barron should get it, but still), again – it adds up fast. compare to the obamas, where only the four core family members got it. (I don’t think Michelle’s mother did.) And for the whole time (or most of it), Malia and Sasha were living in the White house, so protecting them was easier than protecting Don Jr., even factoring in things like school trips or sports etc.

      • Tourmaline says:

        @Becks1 – Tiffany Trump definitely does get Secret Service Protection. There have been articles in the Washington Post about her detail and how they follow her around Georgetown Law where she is a student.

        All of Trump’s grandchildren are in the Secret Service bubble as well. And that adds up to quite a bit of protection as, for example, Don Jr. and his ex wife have five kids. I remember this notable story

      • notasugarhere says:

        Trump is making millions off the US taxpayers every time he stays in one of his properties. Come on emoluments clause lawsuits!!

      • Becks1 says:

        @tourmaline – ugh. so 5 kids with SS protection plus the grandkids. But the Obamas were the ones taking advantage bc Mrs Robinson lived with them.

  33. Mignionette says:

    I am all for RF accountability to the Tax Payer. But what about RR accountability?

    Take for instance this headline from Richard Kay’s who’s sole intent is to generate hatred towards the Sussexes who will not let RR’s monitize their son….

    “RICHARD KAY: Harry and Meghan’s home move has racked up a huge bill – but with their reluctance to share traditional photos of their son and efforts to keep details of his birth secret, are they doing their part of deal?”

    ^^ It is clear where Richard is angling here. He is clearly blackmailing H&M and saying “if only you would allow us more access to you and every detail of your life and maybe even allow us to access to your cervix as you were giving birth, then we would be kinder….”

    Does anyone not see how unacceptable this is?

    Thrash them if you will in the headlines for over-spending but don’t fake the faux outrage to fulfill another agenda….

    • Harla says:

      I read that article too Mignionette and came away feeling ill.

    • Tourmaline says:

      Yep that article is disgusting. It refers to the fact that the couple wanted to keep private childbirth details private as “farcical”. I guess Richard Kay must have got a lot of joy and sick jollies about hearing from Kate’s gynecologists and leaked details about her labor, and seeing her have to totter about on high heels a few hours after birth.

      All the aggressive verbiage in this article focusing on Frogmore and how the Sussexes should have stayed in Kensington Palace– not a word about a luxe estate called ANMER HALL. Would it have been OK for Richard Kay for the Sussexes to splash out on a reno of a country estate as long as they stayed in KP?

  34. Lyn says:

    So let me get this straight.

    Meghan lives a 4 bedroom house (not even the royal luxury that was talked about and I’m sure with her previous income she have afforded sth similar on her own), has no staff bar a nanny, no yoga studio, barely any freedom to do much, no source of personal income now, no creative outlet, restriction on what she can or cant do, cant see her friends as much, pure bs daily from the media, racists villifying her everyday and now her child.
    Honestly chica had a better standard of life before her marriage. The above would have been way too much for me to take but love foes strange things yo us and makes us endure more than normal.

    And I also just read that Charkes expenses on William and Harry and wives had only increased by 89000 from the previous year. So the year of Meghan’s inclusion has only seen it go up by that much. And here the media was talking about her 1 million wardrobe. Her wardrobe has cost nowhere remotely. A lot of her jewelry and wardrobe is preowned. Just insult into injury.

    Harry must be worth it.

    Oh yeah and the bloody house that are ppl are whining about the cost of renovating is on the flight path so is noisy. I hope at least they sound proofed it.

    In conclusion, I’m if the mind that since neither Harry or Meggsn own this house they most definitely should not pay millions to renovate it. That’s the crowns responsibility and they should have been maintaining it and not let it fall into disrepair. The Sussex paid for interior work and that seems fair.

    • Myra says:

      Now that you put it that way….spend Meghan spend….so sick of this.

      • Lyn says:

        Yes do spend. Bc not only is she not even spending that much (even when compared to the other royals) but she gets such bs on a daily basis. It’s not worth it. She would be better off out of the damn royal family. But while shes there just do you Meghan.

    • leena says:

      @ Lyn – see my photo below of Frogmore House

      • Lyn says:

        Frogmore House is a royal residence and much bigger than Frogmore cottage. The cottage was until recently used as a staff resident. Then it was converted back up a 4 room + 1 nursery for the Sussexes.
        Two different houses.

      • leena says:

        Thanks for your correction but – From wiki -

        The cottage was a retreat for Queen Charlotte and her unmarried daughters.[6] The theologian Henry James Sr. and his family lived at the cottage in the 1840s.[7] A personal secretary of Victoria’s, Abdul Karim, moved to Frogmore Cottage in 1897 with his wife and father.[8][9] Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna of Russia in exile from her native Russia stayed there in the 1920s.[10]

        In the early 21st century the cottage was a series of five separate units housing Windsor estate workers.[11]

        “In 2019, the house was converted to serve again as a 10-bedroom, single-family home, at a reported cost from the Sovereign Grant of £2.4 million.[12][13] The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who had earlier held their wedding reception at nearby Frogmore House, moved from Nottingham Cottage to Frogmore Cottage in spring 2019, before the birth of their first child.”


      • Becks1 says:

        Frogmore is the one from the movie Victoria and Abdul, where Abdul lived. I’m sure its not the exact house, but it gives you an idea of the size of it. I think its a nice sized house, just not when compared to Frogmore HOUSE, or even Anmer etc.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Using tabloid lies or wikipedia as references? LOL

    • Becks1 says:

      89k??? I am HOWLING. That’s the difference???

      I wonder if Meghan was buying a lot of her clothes herself?

    • Vi says:

      CH doesn’t reveal the details of what Charles spends for his sons. This is from the ITV report:
      “The £5.1 million is a big rise on the £3.5 million in the same box in 2017-18.”

      It’s really impossible to say how much,in detail,he spent for the Cambridges and Sussexes,and that number apparently includes other expenses too.

  35. Thaisajs says:

    What does it say about the royal family, however, that they let this property fall into that level of disrepair? And they had employees of the royal household living in such dangerous conditions? Wood beams rotting? Unsafe gas and electrical lines? That’s not okay.

    • Nic919 says:

      Buckingham Palace was left to be run down as well, so this actually fits in with what the Queen has done lately. She didn’t use the sovereign grant money to keep BP up to par and now the renovations there will be borne by the taxpayers.

  36. HeyThere! says:

    I am not from across the pond but I do find it sucky that they use public funds when they themself are worth 100’s of millions of dollars. I get why they ‘can’, I just don’t think any of the royals should….aside from the Queen.

    • Jaded says:

      Meghan and Harry aren’t worth hundreds of millions. Meghan has about $10 mill and Harry has around $30 mill.

      • Elisa says:

        That’s still way more than many many people in the UK have…

      • Jaded says:

        @Elisa – there are hundreds of vastly wealthier Britons who have inherited huge estates that make Meghan and Harry look like paupers. Why aren’t you going after them for their lazy and entitled lifestyles? The world is full of a few “haves” and a huge number of “have-nots” so simply targeting them makes no sense.

      • Tina says:

        The other wealthy Britons pay their taxes and don’t take handouts from the government. I have no problem with JK Rowling living a luxurious lifestyle, she’s earned it, unlike the royals.

      • Elisa says:

        Meh, IMO all royals are useless, and no cent of taxpayer money should be spent on them…

  37. aquarius64 says:

    Frogmore renovations werepaid with a tax refund.

    • IlsaLund says:

      Thanks for posting that link. It was very helpful in understanding the concept of the Crown Estates

    • Myra says:

      I have a feeling most British people haven’t read this article. George III handed over the property for an annual fee paid to the Monarch. So basically the RF is spending money that was agreed upon.

      • Tina says:

        It didn’t belong to George III personally. He owned it as the sovereign, who was responsible for paying for the government. He relinquished the Crown Estates along with the responsibility for paying for the government. And the payment has been modified a number of times over the years, most notably when the Civil List was replaced with the Sovereign Grant.

  38. Guest says:

    I laughed when I saw this. Of course the dailymail ran with it. Frogmore most likely had asbestos and everything else growing in it. At least it’s only a 4 bedroom house. Unless they were going to tear it down it would have cost money. The upkeep shouldn’t be as much as as a 22 bedroom house.

  39. SURFCHICK says:

    Isn’t this to be expected on some level? I don’t see the problem. America has a huge homeless problem, paying taxes changes nothing. They are part of the Royal family, I thought this was standard

  40. Zazu says:

    Everyone other than the reigning monarch and maybe the heir (and their spouse/minor children) should live in private property they buy and renovate themselves. The number of royal residences should be curtailed to Buckingham, Windsor and maybe one like Balmoral. The others should be turned into Museums or, if too expensive to maintain/not interesting to tourists, sold. Basically the amount they receive for the government should be set at a maximum of a x million pounds and everything else should be paid for by themselves if they want it. It would be nice for some of them to voluntarily pay for their own houses or what have you.

    The Duchy of Cornwall, being a crown body and not the private property of the prince of Wales, should pay for all his and his children’s lifestyles since its profits are £18 million pounds per year- extra tax payer grants shouldn’t be required for their royal renos or travel. It’s all obscene. The Duchy should be considered the TOtTAL grant from the government for the royal work and upkeep of the prince of Wales and his children.

  41. Guest says:

    Harry should take his wife and son, and say f these people. The royal family or the England don’t deserve them. They get what the deserve with big willy and Kate.

  42. Andrea says:

    Donald Trump and his grifter family have spent a lot more to golf on the regular.

  43. Maxie says:

    The UK taxpayers probably lose money with the Royal family. The tourist argument is BS and they cost more per year (housing, clothes, security, etc.) than whatever they raise for charity.

    • Becks1 says:

      I don’t buy the tourism argument, as an American. I actually think they would get MORE tourism if there were no royal family and the palaces were open most of the year. As it is, BP is only open for a few months a year, same with Windsor, right?

      I know this gets brought up constantly, but its not like France is hurting for tourism with Versailles and no royal family. And I know Spain DOES have a royal family, but most Americans I know who visit Spain don’t know they still have one, lol.

      • notasugarhere says:

        The tourism argument is a lie, which was proven by the official tourism agency for the UK. The royals are a net zero when it comes to bringing in tourism money. More people visit LegoLand Windsor than visit Windsor Castle, and only one royal-related thing (I don’t remember which) cracked the top 10 sites visited.

      • Becks1 says:

        There’s a LEGOLAND near Windsor? Huh. Good to know (I’m planning a trip for next summer with my two boys lol. I think they’ll need LEGOLAND after a lot of castles haha.)

        sorry my computer keeps autocorrecting that.

      • notasugarhere says:

        They did a fun royal wedding display, complete with a big hat for Camilla’s lego figure.

  44. Lowrider says:

    Harry and Meghan live in government housing. The government is responsible for maintaining the structure and grounds of the home. If Harry and Meghan move out or divorce it’s not like they can sell the home and split the costs. Why should they have to pay for the structure improvements?

  45. bobafelty says:

    People are missing the bigger picture: this property required Structural, Electrical, and Mechanical upgrades (e.g., big $$$ items). The structural issues, such as degraded ceiling beams, required updating to keep this historical building stable and standing for anyone to use, even if the Sussex’s had moved somewhere else. The electrical and mechanical issues were required to make the space functional and useable, and probably needed upgraded plumbing as well. Speaking as someone who works in construction, these items most likely made up the biggest portion of the $3M costs.

    So, I don’t think the costs are outrageous to preserve a historical building. However, I also think that only the Queen or King should be living in publicly owned property, their relatives should be in privately owned houses (like other European royalty do). These public properties should be kept up with public money, but for the public! Bring in more tourism money by opening up many more properties. If these buildings were made useable for public events, where they could be rented out, host receptions, rent an estate for a wedding, etc….it would be a huge money maker for the UK, vs just for private use.

  46. Harleyb says:

    American taxpayers CONTINUE to shell out $3 million every time Trump spends a weekend at Mar-a-Lago.

  47. Well-Wisher says:

    The annual outrage. Frogmore Cottage is a part of the Crown Estate. It is public property but not government owned. The Queen pays income tax into the sovereign grant that issued 63 million pounds for renovations to various properties like Frogmore for repairs, upgrades for electrical and plumbing including the removal of asbestos. The £2.4 million were obtained from the allocated fund. All removable fixtures and external gardening operations will be paid by the Sussexes.
    There was a modest increase to the Prince of Wales budget due to the wedding which was paid for privately.
    Should the country go Republican the financial conditions for the Sussexes will be unchanged while the royals would have to be compensated due to a centuries old arrangement with the government.
    Canadians do not contribute to the Crown Estate. They provide for the travel arrangements on the event that a member of the Royal family is invited to a state visit by sending actual plane for said member.

    The unwarranted outrage for the cost of £1.24 for the last fiscal year is absurd.

  48. Sam says:

    The media drove Harry and Meghan out of their Cotswold property that they were renting with THEIR own money yet they are mad Harry and Meghan are living in a property that cost taxpayers 2.4 mil to renovate (which would still have been with or without them living in it) so where does the media want them to live?

  49. khaveman says:

    Take a very old home (worth preserving on the property due to history and location) from a dormitory back to a safe, clean, dry and comfortable family home for someone who’s in the top 10 royals and I don’t think that $3 million sounds too excessive. How big is Frogmore? The bigger the home the larger the cost anyway. It’s a 10-bedroom historical home.

    • notasugarhere says:

      They aren’t living in Frogmore House, they’re in Frogmore Cottage (4 bedrooms).

  50. Tina says:

    I don’t love the money that is spent on the royals (although I’m much more annoyed by the money spent on William and Kate’s renovations than this). But my issue with this story is that it was deployed by the Mail and the Sun to distract from Boris Johnson’s possible domestic violence troubles. They’re using Meghan as a scapegoat, and it’s not right.

    • Molly says:

      Why would they do that? Do the British people dislike Meghan that much? It seems like she is a scapegoat for everything. It’s really sad.

      • Tina says:

        It’s some of the press doing it (Mail and Sun), not the people. The people are mostly indifferent to all royals, including Meghan.

  51. kate Van says:

    I think some of you are confused, or I am. First, I believe that the Royal family owns the land that all the residences are on as well as the contents of each estate. What they don’t own is the structures themselves, which is why tax payers money goes to renovate the old estates (which are open to the public). So, if the Royal family were to be abolished, I believe they would take their belongings and sell to the country a few of the properties. The British are quick to complain about the $.65 they spend a year to the crown in taxes, but never figure in what the Royal family brings into the economy each year as well as to the various charities that they support.

    • Tina says:

      You are confused. The royals don’t own this land, it belongs to the Crown, which is a complicated concept that boils down to the state. And the tourism argument is a red herring, royal properties are not much visited and they would be visited in any event (as in France) if the monarchy was abolished.

  52. Chaz says:

    I’m genuinely surprised that the majority think’s it is ok to spend that much on a property the taxpayers will have to pay for again when the two of them move on. Turning flats into one home, which will have to be undone done down the line. In a house that is not part of the tourist attraction like Windsor or Buckingham and brings in no revenue.

    It’s a myth that the royals have no independent funds. They have to be clear about how much of our money they spend but not theirs.

    Why should we have to pay for the excessive demands? Surely at least some of it could have come from their own funds.

    As people have mentioned above it is a big deal when foodbanks for families are a necessity, even ones with job income. Nurse ect.

    Schools have no funding..businesses are crashing. Uk can’t afford to pay even more to loss that already have the money to pay it themselves.

    • Well-Wisher says:

      The Tories implemented the austerity program and blamed the EU. The royal family is not responsible for the economic budgets their role is symbolic. In the event of a republic they will be heavily compensated by the state and continue to maintain their upper class life style.
      Prince Harry and Meghan are not responsible for the poverty created by the government of the day. The royal family and the government are not one and the same.
      There were at least two elections where the Tories and their economic policies could have been replaced

  53. John Gibson says:

    A great shame. The UK has suffered nearly 10 years of austerity which has favoured the rich. Very disappointing and it feels cheap when homelessness and poverty have increased so much in the last decade.

  54. liriel says:

    Sad story..