Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral and related events cost £162m: UK government

LONDON: Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral and related events after her death last September cost British taxpayers nearly £162 million ($201 million), the government revealed in its first public estimate on Thursday.
The elaborate state funeral for Britain’s longest-serving monarch, held on September 19, saw an extensive security operation for hundreds of foreign heads of state and royals.
He followed hundreds of thousands of people queuing around the clock for days to view his coffin as it lay in the British parliament in London and Edinburgh, which also required costly arrangements for security and logistics.
In a written statement to Parliament, Finance Minister John Glen said the total estimated cost was £161.7million, with the Home Office – responsible for policing – accounting for the largest proportion (£73.7 million).
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport spent £57.4m, while the Scottish Government billed £18.8m.
“The death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on September 8, 2022 and the period of national mourning that followed was a moment of enormous national significance,” Glen said.
“The Government’s priorities were that these events proceed smoothly and with the appropriate level of dignity, while ensuring the safety and security of the public at all times.”
The disclosure comes shortly after the coronation earlier this month of Elizabeth’s son, King Charles III, with his bill likely to raise eyebrows – and complaints – as many Britons grapple with the worst cost of living crisis in a generation.
Buckingham Palace rejected reports that the total of this vast security operation would exceed 100 million pounds sterling.
More than 5,000 police officers from across the UK supported 10 days of ceremonies to mark the death of the late Queen and Charles’s immediate accession to the throne last September.
Many have been redeployed to support events unfolding in London and Scotland, where she died aged 96 at her Balmoral estate after a year of declining health.
Policing was also needed in Windsor, to the west of the British capital, and in Norfolk, to the northeast, where the royal estate of Sandringham is located.
The day of the funeral was the biggest police operation ever by the Metropolitan Police in London, beating the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2012 Olympics.
This has since been capped off by the Operation Around Coronation on May 6, which saw the Met lead an operation involving 11,500 serving officers, staff and volunteers.
Anti-monarchists called the coronation a “parade of vanity” and a rare waste of public money.
But supporters countered that celebrating a weekend, which included an extra public holiday, would pay for itself in extra spending by people and in visits to the UK by tourists.


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