Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle have repaid £2.4 million ($4.3 million) in public money used to refurbish a house on the grounds of Windsor Castle.
The cash came after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex signed a multiyear contract with Netflix – said to be potentially worth hundreds of millions of dollars – to produce programs.
The British house, Frogmore Cottage, was refurbished to their specifications to become their official residence. But they lived there only a few months before announcing in January that they would seek new careers outside the royal family.
Under a deal for their departure from the family, thrashed out at the so-called ‘Sandringham summit”, Harry and Meghan agreed to repay much of the money spent on refurbishing the house
“A contribution has been made to the Sovereign Grant by The Duke of Sussex (Harry),” a representative for the couple said on Monday (US time).
“This contribution as originally offered by Prince Harry has fully covered the necessary renovation costs of Frogmore Cottage, a property of Her Majesty The Queen, and will remain the UK residence of The Duke and his family.”
The Sovereign Grant is British government money paid annually to the Queen each year to support her official role. It pays the running expenses of her official household, including maintenance of Crown properties.
The payment came despite reports the Queen must approve the couple’s Netflix deal before it can be finalised.
According to a palace insider quoted in the British media, the contract is still “subject to discussion” with Harry’s grandmother.
The Sussexes now live in Santa Barbara, north of Los Angeles, with their young son Archie. They moved into the nine-bedroom house, said to have cost about $23 million ($31.6 million), in July.