Time for EPEP – English Pounds for English Palaces
Westminster Palace has suffered years of neglect and urgently needs major work. Built between 1840 and 1870 and damaged during WWII, it now features decaying stonework, subsidence, and asbestos
Query: Why hasn’t it already been closed?
Comment: Anywhere else would have been.
Re-flooring, re-wiring, re-pointing and re-plumbing all beckon.
According to an £8million investigation, repairs could cost from £3 to 7 billion in a time frame of 10-30 years, depending on whether MPs and staff move out or not.
Comment: Watch that £7bn treble by the time the work’s done.
Another paltry £150 million are needed to save Buckingham Palace.
Update 18 Nov 2016: Estimates are now up to £370 million over 10 years. We all know that the final cost is more likely to rise to over a billion pounds.
And what about the other royal residences which the taxpayer has to pay for?
Will they have to be refurbished at our expense at some point in the future?
Comment: We must be mugs for putting up with such a state of affairs.
The most famous tenant in the world
has occupied the crumbling palace for 90 odd years and has done no maintenance, despite receiving £35.7 million annually from British taxpayers. Buckingham palace has not been redecorated since 1952.
Query: Anyone else still living in a childhood home that hasn’t seen a lick of paint or new wallpaper in 60+ years?
HM’s hardly likely to start now, particularly since she’s not even paying for her own birthday party.
And here’s how the big day went off!
London’s most expensive “pay if you come” birthday party was held along the Mall in pouring rain. 10,000 ticket holders at £150 a head took their seats for a £3.99 M&S meal deal at picnic tables set up amid puddles on the road
What to do?
*Apply more austerity to get the money from somewhere in the budget?
*Turn both Palaces into Museums with entrance fees to pay for themselves?
*Corporate Sponsorship (Oglach’s suggestion).
Comment: Mc Donald’s Golden arches would look great at both Westminster and Buckingham. Or, better still, Spearmint Rhino. Or even both!!
*Sell Westminster Palace and /or a few plots of Buckingham Palace gardens with building permission incorporated to developers to turn into top-level appartments, shops, wine bars, restaurants and offices?
Comment: The sales would easily cover the construction costs of a custom-made Seat of Parliament and the Buckingham Palace renovations.
Who should pay?
The English, of course.These are two quintessentially English buildings.
These are two clear-cut examples of when EVEL really should apply
Remember: EVEL is as EVEL does
So let only English MPs with their Tory majority decide what to do and how to foot the bills.
or with Scotland (1/59 Conservative MP), Wales (11/ 40) or Northern Ireland (0). People in these areas should not contribute one penny, particularly as close to 50% in Scotland and NI want to leave the UK anyway.
“The cost of restoring Westminster is astronomical,”
“The prospect of spending billions of pounds at a time of belt-tightening and damaging Tory austerity is eye-watering”
Query: or is it time for EPEP – English pounds for English Palaces?
Update: 8 Sept 2016: PM Theresa May could block plans for a £4 billion renovation of Parliament which MPs claim is needed to avoid a “catastrophic event”.
The Royal Institute of British Architects had warned the MPs there is a “great skills shortage” that could impact on the scheme.
Comment: Come back all ye Polish plumbers and electricians. All is forgiven!