The £369m cost to the taxpayer of renovating Buckingham Palace has been defended by Chancellor Philip Hammond.
Mr Hammond told Peston on Sunday the 10-year refit had been “put off for decades”.
He said the royal residence, and the Palace of Westminster – which is also said to need renovating – were "very important in supporting Britain’s soft power projection across the world" and its tourist industry.
Work on the 17th century building – which requires Parliamentary approval – is due to start in April.
The decision to undertake the building works was made after an independent report found that without urgent work there is a "serious risk of fire and water damage".
Shadow business secretary Clive Lewis told Peston on Sunday he thought the Queen should contribute "quite a bit" towards the refit.