The Royal waste of money: Your take
Is the Royal wedding a Royal waste of money? Robert Powell hit the streets to get your views
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few months you’ll know that the Royal Wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton is set to go ahead this Friday.
So as feel-good Royal fever sweeps the nation, I’m going to spoil everyone’s fun by taking a look at whether we should actually be celebrating Wills and Kate’s big day – or commiserating over a right Royal waste of money.
First up – should Friday really be a Bank Holiday?
Should it be a Bank Holiday?
It’s estimated that the Royal wedding will cost the economy £5 billion by creating two consecutive four day weekends.
Small businesses are especially concerned that the three day week could see many employees call in sick and take an extended holiday.
And employees aren’t the only ones who will be shelling out for William and Kate’s wedding; taxpayers will also be footing the security bill.
But is this right?
Should we be footing the security bill?
The Royal wedding is set to be the biggest security event ever staged in Britain. And looking at the figures – it’s certainly not going to be cheap.
Estimates for the taxpayer funded security bill currently stand at anywhere between £20m and £80m, depending on who you believe.
The Met Police are reportedly struggling to meet the security costs for the day because the thousands of officers on duty will earn double time for working on a Bank Holiday.
And when you consider that one of the next largest security events in British history – the G20 protests in 2009 – only cost us a paltry £7.4m, you begin to get an idea as to how pricey this wedding really is.
So with huge costs like these hitting a country still recovering from a recession, will the nationwide Royal Wedding celebrations really manage to give the economy a boost?
Will it really give the economy a boost?
Experts are predicting that Royal wedding souvenir sales are worth £26m while tourism will bring in £750m and food and drink sales could top £360m.
Broadcasters are also hoping for huge viewing figures as a Royal feel-good factor sweeps the nation.
And monarchy induced tourism isn’t just confined to periods of Royal Weddings. Millions flock to the UK every year eager for a glimpse of the Royal life.
But just as this is an all-year-round phenomenon, so is the cost to the tax-payer of keeping a Royal family.
So with this is mind – is the Royal family good value for money?
Is the Royal Family good value for money?
According to the tourism board, Visit Britain, Britain’s monarchy generates well over £500m every year from overseas tourists.
But this doesn’t come without a price – in the 2009-10 financial year the Royals cost the taxpayer £38.2m; or 62p per person.
Whatever you think about the Royals, it’s undeniable that the wedding will give the country – at the very least – a bit of a morale boost.
But when it comes to whether we should all be footing the event’s security bill and getting the day off work – I’m still not so sure.
It’s also debatable whether any couple – even if they are Royal – would really want so much attention and scrutiny on such an important day.
I know I certainly wouldn’t.
What do you think?
Is the Royal wedding a Royal waste of money?
Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below.