Europe needs swagger

The monarchy’s royal gift to Britain’s economy

U.K. monarchy worth an estimated $87 billion

Traditional fry-ups, "posh" mannerisms, classic literature - British culture has many traits, but one asset that the world is really obsessed with? Its royal family.

"The royal family as characters certainly enhance the (Commonwealth Realms) system as they are popular celebrities in their own right, starring on the covers of glossy magazines," says Robert Jobson, author of "The Future Royal Family" and "Diana: Closely Guarded Secret."

With all eyes on the royals - whether that's in fashion or social engagements - this is bound to be good news for its home country.

British Royal Family at the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate.
Hugo Burnand | AFP | Getty Images

The U.K. monarchy is now estimated to be worth just under £57 billion ($87 billion) and could deliver an overall net contribution of £1.155 billion to the U.K. economy in 2015, according to Brand Finance.

From bunting-covered charity events to souvenir-encrusted towns, CNBC takes a look at where some of these royal economic benefits come from.

The "Will & Kate Effect"

When the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge got married on April 29th 2011, not only did half of the U.K. tune in to watch some form of the wedding's coverage but several millions around the world did too. In fact, the event was live-streamed 72 million times on YouTube in 188 countries, demonstrating how influential the young royals have been for both the public and the monarchy's image.

"The colorful ceremonial of monarchy with links to the past, royal anniversaries, weddings and state visits is much loved by the public as it attracts both national and international attention," Richard Fitzwilliams, royal commentator told CNBC.

The hotly-discussed "Kate Middleton effect" has never failed to impress as the minute the Duchess wears a high-street brand, the stock sells out in minutes.

Even the birth of an entitled king or queen gets the economy revved up.

In 2013, the birth of Prince George generated an estimate of £247 million in U.K. retail sales and after the birth of second royal, Charlotte, the U.K.'s Centre for Retail Research estimated it would trigger not only a short term boost of £80 million, but the fact that Kate gave birth to a girl could be crucial to the U.K.'s fashion and retail sales in the long term.

Royal events and tourist hotspots

Queen Elizabeth II and the royal family attend horse-racing week, Royal Ascot annually without fail. Consequently, Ascot racecourse generates millions each year, with £68 million spent in 2013 on off-course expenditure - almost half on fashion/beauty - predominantly spent during the one royal week in June.

Miles Willis | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

London's royal borough of Kensington and Chelsea, receives an estimated £3.1 billion from its visitor economy, with almost half spent on shopping. The borough houses plenty of attractions associated with the monarchy, including the annual Chelsea Flower Show, Kensington Palace and Harrods.

The Berkshire town of Windsor gets a royal boost daily having housed Windsor Castle - one of the British monarchy's official residences - for almost 1,000 years.

Even though Windsor's borough has over 20 attractions including Legoland, over half of visitors surveyed said they went or intended to visit the castle, in 2014. Visitors spent around £472.7 million in the borough of Windsor and Maidenhead during 2013, according to Tourism South East.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge greets members of the public in Singapore as part of the Diamond Jubilee tour in 2012.
Kate Middleton put this Singapore retailer on the map

"Economic benefits include tourism as there is a celebrity aspect to monarchy which attracts publicity, and also trips abroad by members of royal families are considered as very valuable for trade," said Fitzwilliams.


Members of the Royal Family hold around 3,000 patronages to charitable organizations, with the Queen showing her support for more than 600.

Charles, the Prince of Wales, has been involved in charitable events for over 35 years and is estimated to have raised £100 million annually to his causes. In 1979, he founded "The Prince of Wales's Charitable Foundation", one of the U.K.'s largest independent foundations, while his charitable work also encompasses the U.S., Canada, South Asia and Australia.

By attending charitable events and interacting with the public, this only strengthens the royal family's character, Jobson argues, which is why the figureheads will continue to remain popular.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge;Prince William, Duke of Cambridge;
Royal wedding cake slices up for auction
UK’s Prince George racks up nearly 800 presents

By CNBC's Alexandra Gibbs, follow her on Twitter @AlexGibbsy.