The heir to the British throne, Prince Charles, had a bumper year even as some companies struggled to make ends meet. His private estate the Duchy of Cornwall raked in an income of £13,274,000 for the year 2004. This was as compared to the £11,913,000 in the previous year. Clarence House released the Prince’s annual balance sheet yesterday.
The main reason for this windfall was the rising income for the estate from the commercial properties. The income for this year rose by 11 percent. This huge income was in addition to the £2,688,000 that the Prince gets as subsidies from the taxpayer. It was calculated that the taxpayer pays out 4p for the upkeep of the Prince of Wales.
The private secretary of the Prince, Sir Michael Peat said that the Prince had raised £109m for charities last year. Sir Peat claimed that this made him “the greatest charitable entrepreneur in the world.” Additionally, the Prince donated £2.5m from his own purse to charitable causes. “The Prince is the only person anywhere who sets out how he uses his private money,” Sir Peat commented.
According the report, Charles attended 191 formal briefings last year. He received more than 47,000 letters from the public, and replied personally to more than 2,300 letters. His office wrote a further 18,000 letters on his behalf. The costs for the staff were pegged at £3,814,000; housekeeping accounted for £96,000, while the upkeep of the gardens cost £30,000.
A sum of £72,000 was spent on utilities like electricity, gas and water. The organic foods company run by the estate, Duchy Originals, raked in a £1m profit for this year. All the profits are donated to charity. The Prince’s personal spending was billed at £5million, including tax. The cost of the April wedding to Camilla Parker Bowles, now the Duchess of Cornwall, will appear in next year’s accounts.
Prince Charles does not own the Duchy’s assets, but gets the profits that are made by the estate; he also receives an income from The Oval cricket ground and Dartmoor Prison.