Prince Charles may live in modest flat as King in Royal Family estate shake-up

Prince Charles will choose to live in a ‘modest flat’ as part of a shake-up of the Royal Family’s estates when he takes the throne, according to reports.

It is also claimed that Prince William and Kate Middleton will move into Windsor Castle in the planned revamp.

Charles, who currently divides his time between Highgrove House in Gloucestershire and his London residence of Clarence House, is said to have a discussion of the palaces “on the ‘do to’ list”, The Mirror reports.

Buckingham Palace and Balmoral could even be opened up to members of the public permanently, something The Queen is thought to oppose, instead wanting the palace to stay as a “family home of sorts”.

A source told the Mail on Sunday that at the heart of Charles’ plan is working out how the estates become more than just homes for members of the Royal Family.

They said: “Everybody recognises it makes no sense to run so many residences but if you give them up entirely you will never get them back when Prince George and the younger royals grow up and need somewhere to live.”

Under the ambitious plans, William, Kate, George, Charlotte and Louis could relocate to Windsor from their current home of Kensington Palace.

Prince Edward meanwhile is thought to be safe in Bagshot Park, while Princess Anne is unlikely to leave her current residence, Gloucestershire’s Gatcombe Park.

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Charles himself is likely to take up a “modest” residence at Buckingham Palace when he becomes King, while simultaneously making the residence far more accessible to members of the public.

Currently, the state rooms, gardens, throne room and some of the art collection can be seen at certain times of the year. However new plans would allow for access to the Palace all year round instead of seasonal admission.

Speaking about Buckingham Palace, a friend of Charles said: “Despite what everybody thinks about him not wanting to live there, he will certainly have accommodation there – but it will be a much more modest flat-above-the-shop situation akin to that of the Prime Minister at Downing Street.

'Both the Prince and the Duchess of Cornwall are very practical and see that the reigning Monarch must live at Buckingham Palace, otherwise it would become like Hampton Court' – a visitor attraction rather than a working royal palace.”

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