Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Duke of Westminster's extensive property portfolio

The Duke of Westminster died aged 64 Photo: ITV

The Duke of Westminster owns more of Britain than the Queen, through an estate that can trace its history back hundreds of years.

Made up of 133,100 acres across the UK, the Duke of Westminster owns 0.22% of Britain's land - compared with the 19,768 acres or 0.03% of the country owned privately by the Queen.

Here are the facts and figures of what comes with the title, across businesses, land and family investments, according to the Grosvenor Estate's website.

  • The 11,500-acre Eaton Estate is just outside Chester. It includes the villages of Aldford, Eccleston and Saighton, and 10,000 acres of agricultural land in Cheshire. Eaton Hall is also the home of the Duke of Westminster and the Grosvenor family.
  • 23,500-acre Abbeystead Estate in Lancashire was bought from the Earl of Sefton in 1980 and is set in the forest of Bowland. The remote beauty spot with rolling hills and more than 600 acres of woodland also includes 22 tenant farms.
  • 96,000 acres of Reay Forest in north-west Sutherland, Scotland, is home to the peaks of Ben Stack, Arkle and Foinaven, as well as up to 3,500 wild deer.
  • 1,800-acre Halkyn Estate in North Wales, managed by the Eaton Estate staff, is rich in limestone, churchstone and lead. The quarrying of these commodities created the family's original wealth and to this day, some quarrying, under lease, still takes place.
  • La Garganta in southern Spain became part of the Grosvenor Estate in 2001 - it is agricultural land comprising of groves of around 19,000 olive trees, 34,000 evergreen oak trees - with the bark used for cork, and 3,700 acres for cereal production.
  • 300 acres of prime central London land in Mayfair and Belgravia - two of the capital's most expensive areas. Addresses include Eaton Square, Eccleston Place, Grosvenor Square, Mount Street and Elizabeth Street - plus others.
  • The estate also includes a company called Wheatsheaf - established in 2012 it employs over 450 people, and develops and invests in businesses which provide solutions to what the Grosvenor Estate calls a "rapidly changing world population and its demands for food, energy and water in an increasingly resource constrained environment".
  • The estate's website also lists the property company, Grosvenor, as an asset - which represents the majority of the "urban property activities and is its largest business". Helping to create "vibrant buildings and neighbourhoods", they have offices and investments in cities around the world including Calgary, Hong Kong, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Lyon, Vancouver, Shanghai, Stockholm and Tokyo.
  • There is also the Westminster Foundation, which manages the "giving" of the family, awarding grants and funding - which it is says is focused on the key aspects of poverty in the UK and issues around community - and supports those in need. More than 1,500 charitable organisations have been supported since the first grant was made in 1974.
  • The family also have the Grosvenor fine art collection - featuring pieces from revered painters such as Rembrandt, George Stubbs who was commissioned to paint the Grosvenor hunt, Van Dyck and Sir Winston Churchill. The works on occasion are displayed at the Grosvenor Museum in Chester.

More on this story