Princess Eugenie’s wedding is merely weeks away, but the occasion is already riddled with drama. According to Harper’s Bazaar, thousands of British citizens have signed a petition saying that it is the royal family, not the taxpayers, who should cover the $2.5 million cost of security for the princess’s nuptials to fiance Jack Brooksbank.
Though the royal family is slated to pick up the tab for the rest of the wedding, the cost of security and policing is usually the most expensive part of a royal wedding, as Harpers Bazaar reports. When Prince Harry wed Meghan Markle in May, the cost of security was $40 million — almost as much as their $45 million nuptials. For Prince William and Kate Middleton, the cost of security was $32 million and their wedding cost $34 million.
The exorbitant cost of a royal security detail covers more than just an eight-hour shift. The cost tends to cover “officers’ overtime pay, holiday cancellations, and requests for extra patrols.”
For Harry and Meghan’s high-profile wedding, there were “rooftop snipers, undercover police in the streets, and a ‘drone destroyer.'”
Thus far, the petition, created by the group Republic, has over 6,500 signatures. In addition to urging the royal family to pick up the tab for security, the petition also requests that Parliament reveals the total cost of Princess Eugenie’s wedding.
“Royal spending is out of control, and taxpayers have a right to know how their money is being spent, said a spokesperson for the Republic. “Charging one royal wedding to the taxpayer is bad enough, but two costly royal weddings this year is crossing a line.”
In addition to a perceived lack of transparency when it comes to royal spending, many feel that taxpayers should not have to foot the bill for Princess Eugenie because she does not handle any royal duties, unlike Prince William, Prince Harry, Kate, Meghan, or even the queen.
“Public services are being cut, and councils are struggling. Why are we footing the wedding bills for the richest family in the country?” added the Republic’s spokesperson.
Prince Eugenie and Brooksbank began dating seven years ago when the princess was 20 and he was 24. They were introduced by mutual friends during a vacation in Switzerland. At the end of January, the pair announced their engagement and their plans to marry in the fall. The ceremony will take place at St. George’s Chapel, where Prince Harry and Markle wed earlier this year.