CAMPAIGNERS have called for a parliamentary inquiry over royal spending after it emerged that £2.4m of taxpayers' money was spent on refurbishing the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's home.

Anti monarchy group Republic, which campaigns for an elected head of state, questioned why the funds had been "thrown" at Meghan and Harry's Frogmore Cottage residence while public services were under financial pressure.

Frogmore Cottage, which was previously five separate residences, has been turned into a single home for the newlywed couple.

The multimillion-pound bill was revealed as part of the annual accounts for the Sovereign Grant, which funds the Queen and her household’s official expenses, show the monarchy cost the taxpayer £67m during 2018-19 – an increase of almost £20m on the previous financial year

“The works started on-site in November 2018 and were substantially completed by the end of March 2019,” the latest Sovereign Grant accounts said.

Graham Smith, from Republic, said: "An MP spending taxpayers' money on a private home would probably not be an MP for much longer.

"The general funds of the Treasury should not be spent on individual members of the royal family at all – even if we had all the money to spend on public services it should not be happening.

"The point about public services is it is particularly galling that they're allowed to get away this whilst public services need money."

Smith said Republic would be asking its supporters to write to MPs to urge them to launch an inquiry into the issue of spending on the royal family.

Kensington Palace had previously insisted reports that the renovation works would cost between £2m and £3m were too high, with the estimates closer to £1.5m.