British royalty and Irish history


Sir – In Stephen Collins’s article “Royals have important role to play in political relations” (Opinion & Analysis, June 21st), he claimed that Queen Victoria donated the equivalent today of “many millions” to relief of the Famine in the 1840s.

Not so. She donated £2,000 and her husband Prince Albert donated £500. In today’s money these two amounts equate to around €250,000, or 25 cents to each person who died. The recent royal wedding cost well over £30 million. Victoria also persuaded the Ottoman sultan to reduce his donation to Irish famine relief from £10,000 to £1,000 to avoid her majesty any embarrassment. Let’s not rewrite Irish history and the place of the British royals in it. – Yours, etc,


Belcoo, Co Fermanagh.