The official’s comment comes in the wake of a media report claiming that the royal family is seizing the assets of the deceased
Britain must do away with the last vestiges of feudalism that supposedly allowed the royal family to line its pockets at the expense of the dead, Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said in a statement on Friday.
His comment came after a Guardian report claimed that King Charles III and his relatives had been taking money left by deceased individuals who had not made a will or had no known relatives, and were doing so to replenish their estates.
Under a system known as “bona vacantia,” in most parts of England and Wales the assets of these individuals go to the Treasury, which then spends them on public services. However, according to an ancient custom dating back to the Middle Ages, people who died near two hereditary royal estates in England had their money collected by the king and their relatives.
These two estates lie in the Duchy of Lancaster and the Duchy of Cornwall, the former traditionally belonging to the reigning king or queen and the latter to their heir. The royals confirmed that while they have a vacancy, the money is donated to local charities.
Mayor Burnham, who presides over the county within the boundaries of the Duchy of Lancaster, described the practice as a “A strange remnant of feudal Britain” Used for redistribution “Wealth in the wrong direction” As reported by The Guardian newspaper. The mayor added that local residents were never informed of the system’s existence and did not agree to it.
“I do not recall this old system being explained to anyone here nor being given general approval.” The official said. “I would like to call on the Government and the Duchy of Lancaster to launch a public consultation on this issue to work on a range of arrangements that could receive greater public approval.”
Burnham’s concern was shared by Liverpool City Region Mayor Steve Rotheram, suggesting that proceeds raised would be better spent on aid. “Thousands of families in our area [who] They are trying to cover their expenses amid the high cost of living crisis.”
On Thursday, The Guardian published an article claiming that over the past 10 years, the Duchy of Lancaster has raised more than £60 million ($75.6 million) in vacant donations, with only a small portion of that money going to charity despite the royal family’s efforts. . Warranties otherwise.
Instead, the money has been routinely used to upgrade the royal family’s commercial properties, which are rented out for a profit. The newspaper quoted three anonymous sources as saying that the people managing the property consider the place to be vacant “Free money.”
While Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the issue, a spokesman for the Duchy of Lancaster told reporters that the money was intended, among other purposes, for “Restoration and repair of eligible buildings in order to protect and preserve them for future generations.”