On a visit to Manchester, a young boy posed Prince William a cheeky question by asking him how much money he had in his bank account but he claimed he didn’t know – so here we look at his staggering fortune and where he gets his money from
Prince William encountered a very tricky situation when a young boy posed a very cheeky question to the future King about his personal finances.
While on a visit to a project tackling youth violence in Manchester, William was put on the spot when 11-year-old Amir Hassan asked him: “How much do you have in your bank account?” The Prince of Wales fortunately saw the funny side and laughed at the brave question. But rather than ignoring the request, he told the schoolboy that he “didn’t know” how much money is in his coffers. However, thanks to annual public reports, William’s staggering fortune can be revealed – and it has certainly had a major boost since the late Queen’s death.
Upon his grandmother’s passing, not only did William and wife Kate gain a host of impressive new titles, he also inherited the vast Duchy of Cornwall empire – becoming a billionaire in the process. The Duchy of Cornwall is a private estate, estimated to be around £1billlion, which was established by Edward III in 1337 for his son, Prince Edward, and has been passed to the eldest surviving son of each monarch.
The estate stretches for 52,449 hectares of land across 20 counties in mostly South Western England – and is currently the responsibility of William, who also has the title Duke of Cornwall, to run. And the vast land it covers means William technically owns a range of surprise places, and has some bizarre tenants.
One of the most stunning places that William has as part of his Duchy of Cornwall estate is the Isles of Scilly. Described as “outstandingly beautiful, uncrowded and unspoiled” on the official tourist board website, the archipelago is located not far off the coast of Cornwall and is around one hour away from southwest England by plane.
Meanwhile, one of William’s many tenants is one that is very familiar to him – his dad King Charles. The King’s personal country retreat of Highgrove in Gloucestershire is on Duchy of Cornwall land, meaning William is now his landlord.
One of the most bizarre properties owned by the Duchy is one of England’s most notorious prisons – Dartmoor. And although the Duchy covers a lot of rural areas, it also has land in London – namely Kennington. And this means that it owns one of the world’s most famous cricket grounds – The Oval. It has been the scene of many England victories including its famous Ashes win in 2005 as well as the place where Surrey County Cricket Club plays.
Earlier this year, it was revealed William received a private income from the Duchy of Cornwall of nearly £6million in the last financial year. Usually, William would be entitled to £24million as his private income, but his finances have been complicated after he became heir to the throne halfway through the financial year.
It came as it was revealed the Duchy generated record profits of £24.048million in 2022-23 – up £1.02million from £23.024million the year before, a jump of about 4.5 per cent, the estate’s own accounts showed due to “additional one-off income”. The King, as the former Prince of Wales, was entitled to £11.275million of the surplus before his accession, while William, who spent about six months of the last financial year as the Duke of Cornwall and Prince of Wales, to £12.773 million, Kensington Palace said.
But the Palace said as a “one-off associated with the change in Dukes of Cornwall” the Duchy team asked to retain a proportion of the surplus for “working capital purposes” – the day-to-day running of the estate – this year. The Duchy kept £6.873m, leaving William with an income of £5.9 million. Meanwhile, Kensington Palace said that the past year had been a transitional one following the death of the late Queen and as such they would not be releasing a report this year – William’s first as the heir apparent.
However, even before inheriting the Duchy of Cornwall, William still had millions in the bank through several inheritance payments. According to The Times, the prince inherited £10million after the tragic death of his mother Princess Diana.
Diana was generous in her will, making sure both her sons, William and Harry, were financially looked after but also providing for her godchildren and favourite staff. The net value of the former Princess of Wales’ estate amounted to more than £21million when she died in 1997, according to the appendix to her will.
Meanwhile, another payment the prince received was after the death of the Queen Mother. William is believed to have been given millions after his late great-grandmother passed away in March 2002. However, the former Queen Consort put a large chunk of her money into a trust fund, to be split between all her great-grandchildren, but with the agreement that Prince Harry would get more than William.
The brothers then had £14million to split between them, but as agreed the younger Wales brother did better out of the deal. The logic behind the Queen Mother’s decision was due to the fact that one day, William was due to inherit the Duchy of Cornwall, but Harry would not.