This Morning: Prince Charles is downsizing the palace
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Buckingham Palace is the residence traditionally taken up by the presiding British monarch and Prince Charles is expected to keep rooms there when king. However, unlike the Queen, who lived in a large section of the Palace throughout most of the year before the pandemic, Charles could reside in a more confined “flat above the shop” style apartment, a royal source has claimed.
A source said the Prince of Wales has been busy discussing with courtiers what will be of the palaces when only himself, Camilla and the Cambridges are in the direct line of accession.
The source confirmed “the property question” has become a priority subject.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, the source asked, “how do you effectively spread two generations of the family across quite a large number of properties?”
They added: “The Prince of Wales strongly believes that these places have got to deliver something for the public beyond just being somewhere for members of the Royal Family to live.”
Hurdles may lie ahead for Prince Charles when the Queen isn’t here anymore, and persuading everyone in the Royal Family to support his reshuffle could be a formidable task.
The Queen’s granddaughters, Princess Beatrice, 33, and Princess Eugenie, 31, could be among those to lose out under Prince Charles.
Prince Andrew’s daughters are not working royals but both currently live in homes owned by the Crown.
Princess Beatrice and her husband Edoardo welcomed their baby daughter into the world on September 18.
Since getting married in July 2020, the couple reportedly lived at St James’s Palace in London.
They are also said to have their sights set on a £3million property in the Cotswolds near Blenheim Palace. However, it remains unclear whether they plan to move there fully or whether St James’s Palace will stay their base.
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Meanwhile, Princess Eugenie moved into Frogmore Cottage in Windsor with her husband Jack Brooksbank and their baby son in August – a five-bedroom property that is officially Prince Harry and Meghan’s base in the UK.
While senior working members of the Firm will remain safe when it comes to keeping their accommodation the Mail suggested Beatrice and Eugenie could miss out.
But the living situation of the sisters could be very different in the near future.
The report in the Daily Mail claimed: “Prince Edward and Princess Anne are also said to be safe in Bagshot Park at Windsor and Gatcombe Park in Gloucestershire respectively.
“But others — including Andrew’s daughters Beatrice and Eugenie — will be vying for accommodation in the reshuffle.”
Buckingham Palace is undergoing ten-year, £369 million renovations. Plans include opening it to the public all year-round rather than as it is now, with seasonal access only.
The Monarch’s living quarters, with 52 bedrooms for royals and guests and 188 bedrooms for staff, will be hugely cut.
Some of the most striking changes are the potential refurbishment of the Balmoral Castle in Scotland into a museum to the Queen; the likely move of the Cambridges — Prince William and Kate with kids George, Charlotte and Louis — to Windsor, and Charles’s official Clarence House residence being saved for the Cambridge children instead of for Prince Harry and Meghan.
The source said: “Everything is seen through the lens of the question: ‘What value is this offering to the public?'”
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