By George, it’s so great to be British!
STRAIGHT TALKING FROM UKIP’S DEPUTY LEADER
THE birth of our future King, George, is super news for William and Kate and great news for “Brand Britain”.
Pictures of the happy couple and child have been beamed round the world, and it shows our country in a good light.
It proves that we are a country that is proud to uphold traditions which have served us so well for centuries.
I can just imagine Americans sitting at home licking their lips now at thought of visiting “London, England” and trying to catch a glimpse of the Queen.
As far as I am concerned, the monarchy is a “win-win” for us. It promotes the British brand in the right way all over the planet and actually makes money.
The monarchy costs us around £33m per year – that works out at about 70p for every household.
Although the figure is up by £1m on last year, it is significantly less than it was 20 years ago. But even the most conservative estimates say the monarchy brings in over £500m every year in tourism.
Of the 30 million visitors who came to Britain in 2011, six million visited a castle, six-and-a-half million a cathedral and five million went to a historic house linked in some way to the monarchy. If the monarchy and its traditions didn’t exist, would tourists still flock to these sights? I’m not so sure.
Last year, the number of tourists who came to Britain was even higher due to the Olympics, and who was the star of the opening ceremony? The Queen. The sight o f Her Majesty ‘leaping’ from a helicopter with James Bond not only showed that she was game for a laugh, but in touch with the people and mood of the country. The monarchy is not just a good deal because of the money it makes us via tourism, it is through land too. Some 250 years ago, a skint George III cracked a deal with the government whereby the profits from the Crown Estates would go directly to Treasury.
In return the government would provide the monarchy with a wage.
It was a terrible deal for the monarchy, but a great deal for us because although in George III’s day the land was almost worthless, it is now worth over £7BILLION.
It ranges from beef farms in northern Scotland, to Regent Street in London, half of the West End and the seabed.
The money from the Crown Estates puts a lot of money in the government’s coffers, which I hope helps to pay for hospitals, schools and transport – but knowing this government it probably gets spent on foreign aid and wind turbines.
Overall, the monarchy has had a great few years with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the marriage of William and Kate and now the arrival of the future King.
We get our monarchs at a snip – they make us money rather than take and long may it last!