Kate Middleton’s wedding dress has helped raise a massive £10 million in admission ticket sales as a record number of visitors paid to see it at Buckingham Palace.
A total of 626,678 people paid to see the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding dress, tiara, earrings and shoes at Buckingham Palace during the 73-day summer opening, a 52 per cent increase in visitors over the previous year, according to The Telegraph.
Kate Middleton’s much-publicised wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, was the pièce de résistance in a Royal exhibition that also included a display of Queen Elizabeth II’s collection of Faberge eggs.
Money raised from ticket sales went to the Royal Collection Trust, a charity which takes care of over a million artworks and valuables belonging to the Queen.
Buckingham Palace’s reported £10 million in ticket sales contributed to a massive increase in the Royal Collection’s income, from £41.7 million in 2010 to £50.2 million last year.
Sales of official Royal wedding souvenirs also boosted the charity’s income by almost £4 million.
The Royal Collection’s biggest moneymaker though was Windsor Castle, generating £14 million in ticket sales and £3.3 million in sales in its shop over the past year.
Other sources of income for the Royal Collection are visitor ticket sales to The Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace, The Royal Mews and the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh.
Director of the Royal Collection, Jonathan Marsden, said: “The marriage of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in April 2011 provided the best possible start to the year.
“The early success of the special commemorative range of china from the time of its launch the previous December was repeated during the summer, when unprecedented numbers came to see the Duchess’s wedding dress.”
Chairman of the Royal Collection Trust, Prince Charles, said it gave him “great satisfaction” that the Queen’s artworks “can continue to be managed to such a high standard without placing any burden on the public funds”.