Crown Estate posts record profits

The Queen's property portfolio, managed by Crown Estate, made a tidy sum this year. Profit to March 31 stands at £240m, up from £231m. Now, there's a reason for Jubilation!

by Rebecca Burn-Callander
Last Updated: 19 Aug 2013

Despite the recession, the Crown’s assets, which include whole stretches of Regent’s Street, the Westgate shopping centre in Oxford, and some 106,000 hectares of farmland, have been sky-rocketing in value over the past year. Net profit is up 4% year-on-year to £240m, taking the capital value of the Queen’s estates to £8bn, up 11% on 2011.

It’s not just prime retail space filling the Queen’s coffers. The Crown’s rural holdings generated a 19.5% return for the year, turning over £25.9m. And the biggest earner was the Crown Estate’s marine holdings. The Queen owns most of Britain’s coastline and seabed – hot property to wind farm developers and construction firms in need of tonnes of sand. These coastal landmasses have increased in value by 23.6% to hit £725.6m, generating a turnover of £55.6m.

Alison Nimmo, chief executive of Crown Estate, said: ‘It has been another tremendous year for The Crown Estate. Our super prime portfolio and active asset management have been the cornerstones of this strong financial performance and resilience during recent market volatility.’

These record profits are good news for the Queen, who will receive a £36.1m Sovereign Grant (rather like pocket money for Royals) next April to fund her official duties, up 16% increase on the £31m she received from UK taxpayers this year. The Sovereign Grant, which is equivalent to 15% of the Crown Estate’s annual profit, has replaced the Civil List, which traditionally funded the monarchy’s activities.

Alas, the Queen was unavailable to comment on her windfall at time of writing…

Picture: NASA/Bill Ingalls, via Wikimedia Commons

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