Although much smaller than in other nations over which they reign, there is a republican movement here in Britain, hoping one day to see the end of our monarchy. However, some of what they say is nothing but myths. Below are some of the most common ones about the Royal Family.
1. The monarchy is expensive
Whilst the monarchy is not a cheap institution, compared to the presidencies of comparable republics, and the amount of revenue brought to the country by the British royal family, they are one of the cheapest heads of state in the world.
The British Monarchy cost the taxpayer 36.1 million pounds. In comparison, the French Presidency costs £154 million per year, and the American Presidency costs £917.3 million per year.
When this cost is broken down, the monarchy only costs each taxpayer between 58p and 1 pound 26 per year.
2. The Queen doesn’t pay taxes
This is another very common myth, that when examined, is false.
Prior to it being legally required (1992), Her Majesty volunteered to pay income tax and capital gains tax. Since 1993 her personal income has been taxable as it has been for any other taxpayer. Her Majesty has always been required to pay Value Added Tax and pays local rates voluntarily.
3. Monarchy is undemocratic
Many believe that because people outside the Royal Family can not be Head of State, then the Monarchy must be undemocratic. This is incorrect, in fact, constitutional monarchies can work to support democracy.
In the Democracy Index 2015, 7 of the top 10 most democratic nations on earth, were constitutional monarchies.
4. The Monarchy is unpopular
The monarchy is believed/contended by many republicans to be unpopular. However, the monarchy is dramatically more popular than a republic.
In 2015 YouGov found that 68 percent of people believed that the monarchy was good for Britain, compared to just 9 percent who believed it wasn’t.
5. Support for a republican is growing
Closely linked to the previous point, is the argument that support for a republic is growing. However, this is also incorrect.
In 2015, YouGov found that more people supported the monarchy (68%) than they did in 2012 (67%), while in contrast, the republican movement has experienced no growth.
It is clear that many arguments presented by republicans are not entirely true, and many are myths. The myths above are just five of the many that are out there. The monarchy remains very popular, experiencing a steady increase in support, making clear that as far as the British people are concerned – the monarchy is here to stay!