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Hillsborough Castle

Volume 885: debated on Tuesday 4 February 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether Hillsborough Castle has been designated as a Royal residence; to what use it is being put; and what is the cost to public funds of upkeep and staff.

Hillsborough Castle has not been designated as a Royal residence.Apartments in the house, which is a Government property, are kept available for the use of members of the Royal Family; investitures continue to be held there; and it is used for certain official meetings and conferences. In addition, the house is permitted to be used from time to time for meetings of welfare and charitable organisations, and for visits of an educational nature.The cost to public funds of upkeep and staff during the current and previous financial years is as follows:

1973–74April-December 1974
££
Upkeep9,19432,038*
Staff31,75622,717
40,95054,755
* Estimate.
Staff numbers were reduced following the departure of the former Governor in June 1973. The cost of maintaining the building has risen as the result of essential repairs and renovations, including elimination of dry rot, which are now in hand, and it is not yet clear how extensive these will need to be.