LONDON — Critics slammed Britain's Queen Elizabeth II after a report revealed that a senior aide asked the government if the monarch would be eligible for an anti-poverty grant to heat her palaces, Sky News reported on Friday.
"It's appalling, it's the most crass thing I have ever heard in my life," Sky quoted Graham Smith, a spokesman for Republic, a campaign group calling for the monarchy to be scrapped, as saying. "The anti-poverty grant is meant to go to needy people — and the idea that the palace can take money from the poor to bankroll the rich is disgusting."
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According to a freedom of information request, the royal aide wrote the government in 2004 complaining that the cost of heating the monarch's homes had doubled to 1 million pounds ($1.58 million) a year, Sky reported. The aide also said the 15 million pounds the royal household received to maintain the buildings was inadequate, according to Sky.
The request was turned down in a letter, Sky reported.Story: Rats! Uninvited guests invade Prince Charles’ garden
"I ... feel a bit uneasy about the probable adverse press coverage if the Palace were given a grant at the expense of say a hospital," a government official explained to the royal aide in an email, Sky reported. "Sorry this doesn't sound more positive."
"I think this is where the Community Energy Funding is directed and ties in with most allocations going to community heating schemes run by local authorities, housing associations, universities etc," the email read.Story: Prince William, Kate acting like married pair
The Queen already gets 38.2 million pounds a year from the government, which includes 7.9 million pounds to cover staff salaries and her personal spending.
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