A love for international travel by members of the British Royal Family has placed huge pressure on taxpayer-funded police budgets.
Scotland Yard paid £6.6 (U.S.$8.6 million) last year for flights and hotel rooms needed for members of the Royalty and Specialist Protection (RaSP) unit travelling overseas, new figures from London Mayor’s office shows – almost double for the same period in the 12 months before, the Sun reports.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan acknowledged the rise, saying: “The increase in flight costs between 2017/18 and 2018/19 is due to an increase in demand, including a significant increase in long-haul travel, with Specialist Ops and in particular the Royalty and Specialist Protection Command, experiencing an additional demand.”
Last night, London Police and Crime Committee member Caroline Pidgeon questioned the costs involved in sending police guards on long-haul flights with Royal Family members. She said: “At a time when community policing has been decimated and violent crime is at such high levels, I find it staggering that such significant amounts of public money are being spent on these items.”
The news of the spike in need for protection officers comes as climate advocate Prince Harry and the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, are midway through their flying 10-day visit to Africa.
Barefoot Prince Harry Warns World: Climate Change Must Be Addressed https://t.co/9q7Zkbfqau
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) August 1, 2019
Prince Harry and the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle, arrived in Africa last Monday to spread their climate advocacy to a new audience.
Baby Archie joined them on the flying 10-day visit along with a team of 13 assistants including a “social media officer” and a hairdresser for Markle.
The past two months have been full of international travel for the Royal pair, with them spotted at one stage taking four private jet flights in just 11 days as they criss-cross the globe. Their seemingly constant air travel has not been without controversy.
Last month a barefoot duke stood before an elite audience of business leaders and celebrities gathered at Google’s annual deluxe retreat in Sicily to warn immediate action is needed to avoid an approaching climate catastrophe.
He spoke ahead of the Duchess of Sussex’s last-minute dash to New York two weeks ago to watch her friend Serena Williams play in the U.S. Open tennis final.
That trip came in the same week Prince Harry flew to Amsterdam to caution holidaymakers and tourism chiefs about the damage being done to the environment by frequent flyers.