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Sandringham – wrong to charge drivers, Lynn News letters

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There is another important point, which is little known about by the public.

According to the Sandringham Estate website, the Queen owns the site and buildings. Most people think that the Queen is being very generous in allowing them into the estate free of charge. This is not the case.

By allowing public access, then on her death, none of her family will pay a penny of inheritance tax on the Sandringham Estate, because public access has been allowed. It’s called “Heritage Relief”, just another tax dodge to make the rich even richer.

The busy visitor centre (19358941)
The busy visitor centre (19358941)

In 1862 Sandringham was bought by Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII) as a country retreat situated close to both Newmarket and London. The old house was demolished, apart from the conservatory which was converted into a billiard room, and a new house was erected by A J Humbert in the Jacobean style in 1870.

The Prince of Wales extended the park slightly on all sides and began the development of the gardens, including the addition of lakes and a Pulhamite rock garden designed by William Broderick Thomas in the 1870s, as well as an extensive walled garden.

The house was enlarged in 1881-4 by R W Edis, who further enlarged and restored it following a fire in 1891.

The gardens continued to be developed through the late 19th century and throughout the 20th century.

In 1947 the ornate bedding schemes were removed and Geoffrey Jellicoe (1900-96) was commissioned to create a simple formal garden north of the house.

In 1968 much of the park was designated the Sandringham Country Park. The site remains in the ownership of The Queen.

It seems inappropriate that the Royal Family will save millions by not paying inheritance tax, and yet they want to rip off public for parking their cars.

Under the Inheritance Tax Act 1984 Section 31, claimants are statutorily required to agree with HM Revenue & Customs the steps that are necessary to maintain the property and to secure reasonable public access to it, and set them out in undertakings.

It would be therefore wrong to levy monies on, yet again, the poor car drivers.

P. Gallagher

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