Tim Martin wants to turn Buckingham Palace into a Wetherspoons now Queen has left

30 March 2022, 19:58 | Updated: 30 March 2022, 20:01

Tim Martin wants to turn Buckingham Palace into a Wetherspoons
Tim Martin wants to turn Buckingham Palace into a Wetherspoons. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

Tim Martin has said he wants to turn Buckingham Palace into a Wetherspoons now that the Queen has moved permanently to Windsor Castle.

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The pub tycoon told MyLondon turning the monarch's former residence into a pub would "earn a bit of income" for the Royal Family, and might even mean he could "feature in the Trooping of the Colour".

"The Queen's moved out early," he told the site.

"Perfect opportunity for Timbo."

He said: "I wouldn't even insist on taking over the whole of Buckingham Palace, I'd just take a section and a bit of garden.

"The Royal Family could earn a bit of income and I could feature in the Trooping the Colour."

The Wetherspoons boss added the Queen would always be welcome to pop in for a drink.

Mr Martin said he would preserve the old features
Mr Martin said he would preserve the old features. Picture: Alamy

Mr Martin bought his first pub in Muswell Hill in 1979.

Forty-two years later, in June 2021, there were 925 venues across the UK and Ireland.

The chain has a reputation for converting unconventional buildings into pubs, such as an old cinemas, ballrooms and opera houses.

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The 66-year-old founder has been the centre of a number of controversies in recent years.

He was a staunch Brexiteer, and donated £200,000 to the Vote Leave campaign in the run-up to the referendum - but then last summer he called for more EU migration to help tackle the shortage of bar staff.

The multimillionaire urged Boris Johnson to introduce a "reasonably liberal immigration system" controlled by Britain rather than the European Union.

Just months later his venues were hit with beer shortages due to supply chain issues partly caused by Brexit.

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He recently criticised Boris Johnson for implementing Covid restrictions that prevented people from going to pubs - a stance that strengthened as the partygate allegations came to light.

"Public anger regarding 'partygate' relates mainly to hypocrisy - the public was prevented from seeing friends and family, while the same rules were not observed at 10 Downing Street," read a statement from the pub chain.

"Central London pubs employ experienced staff, including highly trained managers, who would have easily dealt with the 'high jinks' alleged to have occurred at No 10."