The Queen faces a huge bill for removing asbestos from Buckingham Palace. Royal accounts have revealed that almost £1m has been spent to date removing asbestos from ducts underneath the Palace.
There is still a long way to go with work to remove asbestos from other parts of the building estimated to take many years. It is thought that the total cost could run into many millions of pounds.
A rolling programme has begun to replace miles of electrical cabling and the associated asbestos installed in the late 1940s. Last years’ Royal accounts contained a warning that removing all of the asbestos within the building could take 15-20 years.
Asbestos products were widely used in refurbishments of Buckingham Palace over the years. In the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s in particular asbestos was thought to be a wonder product and was used extensively by the building trade.
The Palace has confirmed that careful records are being kept to ensure that none of the workforce is exposed to asbestos as it is removed.
Let’s hope that the removal of asbestos from such a high profile building as Buckingham palace helps to raise awareness about the prevalence of asbestos in British homes and the need for it to be removed safely.