Westminster to cost £14bn to repair – enough to keep Senedd running for over 220 years
The Palace of Westminster is to cost £14bn to repair, it has been revealed – enough to keep the Senedd running for over 220 years.
The plan to fix the Westminster Parliament will be announced in the New Year and will see MPs moving out for 20 years while the repairs to the Victorian building are completed.
The £14bn price tag compares to the £62.914m cost of running the Welsh Parliament during the 2021-22 term.
It is also over half the £22bn available to the Welsh Government to spend on everything from the Covid response, NHS in Wales, local government to education for the entirety of the 2022-23 financial year.
MPs were originally told the work to the Westminster Parliament would take only six years and cost about £4 billion.
Maintenance costs on the building alone currently cost £127m a year. The electrics, gas, water, heating and sewerage, all of which date from the 1880s would need to be replaced.
The Leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg, told the Times newspaper, which revealed the figures, that he would be “concerned if these figures are accurate”.
“It’s very important that the palace is restored but it has to be one providing value for taxpayers and there should be no gold-plating of the works,” he said.
There will be an opportunity in 2023 for MPs to vote on proposals for the refurbishment, which is due to start in 2027.
The UK Government said: “The Palace of Westminster must be safeguarded for future generations as the home of the UK’s democracy, but when parliament takes its final decision on how to proceed it must be clear — as the government has been throughout — that it will provide value for money for the taxpayer.”