King Charles honours military personnel at Windsor Castle
King Charles has relinquished his Welsh home as part of his scaling back expenses associated with his property portfolio.The old farmhouse, called Llwynywermod, was refurbished by the Monarch and Queen Camilla having bought it through the Duchy of Cornwall for £1.2million in 2007.
But now that it is “unlikely” that the property will be used in the same way as when Charles was Prince of Wales, according to royal sources quoted in the Telegraph, it is being given up when the lease expires in the summer.
The unnamed source said what should be done with the various properties owned by the King — from Highgrove to Clarence House — is an “issue that needs to be addressed”.
But a royal expert has now told Express.co.uk that there is one property which Charles would never give up.
Royal biographer Andrew Lownie said he was “surprised” by the news that Charles is selling Llwynywermod, but he noted that it was bought through the Duchy of Cornwall, which Prince William has now inherited.
The now Prince of Wales’s spokesman said he prefers to stay in hotels when visiting Wales in order to contribute to the local economy.
Mr Lownie added: “I would have thought the security considerations made the house easier and less costly but it is a case of the new Prince of Wales calling the shots.”
He explained that he had not anticipated Charles giving up the holiday cottage in Carmarthenshire because “it clearly means a lot to him.”
Hence, Mr Lownie said that Charles would never give up Birkhall, the King’s private home on the Balmoral estate in Aberdeenshire.
Charles and Camilla spent their honeymoon there in 2005 and when the pandemic hit in 2020, the couple spent lockdown there and isolated there when the King tested positive for Covid-19.
It was formerly the Queen Mother’s residence which she used in the summer with a garden that she and the Duke of York put in in 1930. The residence was passed onto Charles in 2002 and still holds a special place in his heart.
The King told Country Life himself in 2013: “It is such a special place, particularly because it was made by my grandmother. It is a childhood garden, and all I’ve done, really, is enhance it a bit.”
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Mr Lownie said it is also unlikely that the King would give up the Castle of Mey in Scotland as it was similarly bought by the Queen Mother when it was known as Barrogill Castle.
After buying it in 1952, the Queen Mother restored the castle, gardens and parklands and changed its name back to its original title.
The Queen Mother visited the property every year until she was 101 and Charles has continued this tradition as he too goes to the castle each year. Today, it is run by the Prince’s Foundation but Mr Lownie said the castle is “very special” to Charles.
Mr Lownie does not believe there will be many other sales after Llwynywermod but thinks public access to residences may be expanded.
Discussions are reportedly taking place into which properties will be opened up to the public more so they can become more self-sufficient. Mr Lownie continued: “I don’t think we’ll see many other sales but we will see many more royal properties open to the public and hosting concerts such as Windsor, Sandringham and Balmoral.”
Just last month, the King’s Coronation concert saw 20,000 people visit Windsor Castle.
According to Forbes, Charles has a property portfolio worth some £20billion, including ten castles, 12 homes, 56 cottages and 14 ancient ruins.
Mr Lownie added: “I don’t think the public mind the Royals having extensive property holdings as long as they follow a path of duty rather than pleasure.”
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