One of Britain’s most prestigious buildings is about to get a facelift. Buckingham Palace will undergo a 10-year refurbishment costing an estimated $455 million (£369 million), the Royal Household has confirmed. The Queen will remain in residence at her official London home throughout the refit, which will begin next April,ITV News reports.
It’s a major project, but according to a survey carried out by specialists, repair work to aged electrical wiring, water pipes and the palace’s boilers is urgently needed to ensure the safety of the Queen and future monarchs.
The independent report found that there is a “serious risk of fire and water damage” to the 17th century building, which hasn’t been restored since 1952. As for the cost, the Royal Trustees, which include the Prime Minister and the Chancellor, have recommended a temporary increase in the Sovereign Grant to fund the works. The Master of The Queen’s Household, Tony Johnstone-Burt, said that spreading the renovation over ten years “offers the best value for money.”
“We take the responsibility that comes with receiving these public funds extremely seriously indeed; equally, we are convinced that by making this investment in Buckingham Palace now we can avert a much more costly and potentially catastrophic building failure in the years to come,” he said in a statement.
The royal family aren’t the only ones who will get to enjoy the new and improved palace. The Queen’s residence welcomes around half a million people during the Summer Opening each year, while annual events including garden parties, investitures and Trooping the Colour draw thousands more visitors. Now, there’ll be even more reason to take a peek inside this national treasure in years to come.
From: Harper’s BAZAAR US