Monday, June 09, 2008

300 yr old bill

The Prince of Wales will finally pay off a family debt dating back more than 350 years on a visit to Worcester. For the past 15 years businessmen in the city have been trying to reclaim the £453.3s which King Charles II failed to pay 357 years ago.

Before the Battle of Worcester in 1651 the Worcester Clothiers made the monarch thousands of new uniforms to fight Cromwell's army. But he was driven out of the country and never actually paid for them.

Prince Charles is expected to finally pay off his ancestral debt when he visits the city with the Duchess of Cornwall on Tuesday - but without the interest.

According to the Institute for the Measurement of Worth website, the sum of £453 and three shillings in 1651 would have been worth approximately £47,500 ($95,000) in 2007, if interest was taken into account.

A spokeswoman for Clarence House said Prince Charles would personally repay a sum of £453.15 to the current High Master of the Clothiers Andrew Grant at a ceremony.

The spokeswoman said the prince would hand over the money at The Commandery, which served as the headquarters for the Royalists during the battle, as a "gesture of goodwill".

The money will be presented in a purse made by the Royal Shakespeare Company in the style of a 1650 "gaming purse".

Charles II was eventually invited back to England to reclaim his throne in the 1660s.

No comments: