The Queen announced today that, in a bid to avoid cuts in their civil list payments, the entire royal family will be vacating their various residences and moving in to Buckingham Palace by the end of the month. The hope is that the mother of all house-shares, bringing together all the royal households complete with multiple retinues of ladies-in-waiting, under butlers and corgi-wallahs, will fill the literally palatial residence enough to satisfy DSS inspectors when they call.
Her declaration comes less than a week after civil servants discovered that the controversial “bedroom tax” legislation, intended to strip literally several pounds per week from some of Britain’s poorer families, had inadvertently been worded to apply to include public funding of the housing of some of the world’s wealthiest. With Buckingham Palace alone having 240 bedrooms, the number of vacant bedrooms across the royal family presented the government with a potential cash bonanza. The royals, on the other hand, feared the tax could leave them facing difficult choices, such as having to either sell some of their millions in stocks and shares, or buy less racehorses next year.
“This is not a decision one has made easily” said Her Majesty. “To be frank, one’s recent illness was simply the stomach churning at thought of facing some of one's relatives across one's morning bowl of Bran Flakes. Plus Charles will keep on leaving roller skates at the top of main staircase. Yet it is another cross one must bear for one's family and one's nation.”
Big Brother producers described themselves as “salivating”at the prospect of all the tensions that could result from the merger of the royal households, although there is no word yet whether their bid to televise the first 100 days has been accepted. But we do know that an approach from Sarah Ferguson to “help out” by moving in too was firmly rebuffed by the monarch, because “one is not that bloody desperate”.
The royals also hope to gain further income from selling off castles and palaces around the UK, opening up opportunities for various would-be monarchs to live their dreams. Sandringham near Norwich has already been sold to Delia Smith, who intends to use the property to consolidate her absolute rule in Norfolk And north of the border there has been an offer for Balmoral from someone known only as “King Alex”, although apparently his agent asked if the payment could be deferred until sometime late next year. However, when asked whether these properties actually belonged to the Queen and not parliament, a royal spokesman admitted that they had been hoping to “skate over the details”, as the last time that the reigning monarch argued about this with parliament “it all ended rather unfortunately”.