British taxpayers were obliged to pick up a £36.7m bill for the Windsor family in the 2004 – 2005 financial year according to newly published figures. This was in addition to the £13m annual income that Charles Windsor takes from the public property holdings known as the Duchy of Cornwall and the £8.3m (March 2004 figure) that queen Windsor receives in income from the Duchy of Lancaster. The Windsors hold the exclusive right to fill the nation's highest public office under Britain's pre-democratic monarchic system.
The bill was slightly less than the previous year's. However, there would have been a large increase if the family had not won a £1m rebate on the tax bill for their central London palace at the expense of local taxpayers.
There was a striking increase in the family's travel expenses, which increased to £5m. Charles Windsor, who is due to become Britain's head of state when his mother dies, spent £970,000 of taxpayers' money on overseas trips. A tour of Australia, New Zealand and Fiji cost £292,000 just for transport. Mr. Windsor used an entire train for a visit to an organic farm. Taxpayers had to find another £4,686 for a single trip to a golf club by Andrew Windsor.
Windsor chief accountant Alan Reid claimed that the feudal family were a “value for money monarchy”. Public spending on the family is examined by Parliament only once every ten years.