LONDON -- Buckingham Palace says the monarchy cost British taxpayers US$85.2 million during 2018-19, a 41% increase on the previous financial year.
The number rose primarily because of higher levels of spending devoted to critical renovations for Buckingham Palace in London. The iconic structure is in the second year of a 10-year project after a Treasury report concluded the building's infrastructure was in danger of a catastrophic failure.
The total Sovereign Grant, which funds Queen Elizabeth II and her household's official expenses, was 82.2 million pounds, or 1.24 pounds per person in the U.K. That figure includes 15.2 million pounds ($19.3 million) set aside for future phases of the palace renovation.
The palace says the royal family took on 3,200 official engagements during 2018-19 and welcomed 160,000 guests to royal palaces and events.