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Sovereign Grant Act 2011


12.The Royal Household publishes a substantial amount of information about its official business and management of its financial arrangements. Material is also available online at:

13.Readers may also find it useful to consult the following documents:

  • Select Committee on The Civil List, Session 1971-72, 22 November 1971, HC 29

  • Royal Public Finances Annual Reports, 2003-04 to 2010-11

  • Report of the Royal Trustees, 22 June 2010, HC 140

  • Maintaining the Royal Palaces – Twenty-fourth Report of Session 2008-09, Public Accounts Committee, 2 June 2009, HC 201

  • Royal Travel by Air and Rail – Sixtieth Report of Session 2001-02, Public Accounts Committee, 17 July 2002, HC 529

14.This Act provides support for the Sovereign’s official duties. Her private income is not the subject of the Act. That private income includes the income of the Duchy of Lancaster, a private trust managed to provide for future monarchs, which flows into the Privy Purse. The Prince of Wales, as Duke of Cornwall, receives the income of the Duchy of Cornwall, the capital of which is also held in trust to support future Dukes.

15.Information about the two Duchies may be found at :

16.The Queen and the Prince pay income tax voluntarily on their private incomes. The policy on taxation of The Queen and Prince is explained in the Report of the Royal Trustees, and the accompanying Memorandum of Understanding on Royal Taxation, 11 February 1993, HC 464.

17.The Crown Estate’s role is defined by statute through the Crown Estate Act 1961. The Act places a duty on the Crown Estate Commissioners to “maintain and enhance its value and the return obtained from it, but with due regard to the requirements of good management”.

18.The Crown Estate’s land and property is held “in right of the Crown”, but all the revenues it raises, around £210 million in 2009-10, is passed directly to the Exchequer for the benefit of all UK citizens. The Crown Estate is not the Sovereign’s private property or that of the government. The Estate dates back to the reign of Edward the Confessor (reigned 1042 to 1066). Its net revenues are part of the hereditary revenues of the Crown. On his accession in 1760, George III surrendered these revenues (but not ownership of the capital assets) to the Exchequer in return for the civil list. Every subsequent monarch has done likewise.

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