Royal charity set for major windfall thanks to Prince Harry donation and ‘significant’ legacy

Sentebale, which works in Lesotho and Botswana, was set up by the Duke of Sussex in 2006

Prince Harry (Photograph: Samir Hussein/WireImage)
Prince Harry (Photograph: Samir Hussein/WireImage)

A charity created by Prince Harry is set to receive a windfall worth more than £1m.

Sentebale’s latest accounts, published last week with Companies House, reveal that the charity will receive both a donation of £1.2m ($1.5m) from Prince Harry and a separate, “significant” legacy gift before the end of August this year.

The financial filings show that Sentebale’s income also rose sharply in the year to August 2020/21, from £2.4m to £3.1m.

Sentebale was founded in 2006 and works in Lesotho and Botswana.

Referring to the charity’s main annual fundraising event, a polo tournament, the accounts say: “At the time of the Polo Cup, Prince Harry generously committed to donating $1.5m to Sentebale.”

That donation will appear in the charity’s next set of accounts. It matches the total Sentebale raised from events in 2020/21, but is substantially higher than the average amount the Polo Cup raises each year, which is £800,000.

The annual report also says: “During the year ended 31 August 2021, the charity was notified of a significant legacy. 

“The administration of the estate has proved complicated and, whilst the charity is entitled to the legacy, probate was still due to be granted as at the year end. 

“The executors are waiting for information on administration and other fees in order to finalise the estate accounts.”

The accounts show that Sentebale’s income rose to more than £3m in 2020/21, up 30 per cent on the previous year. 

The growth was driven by higher income from events and gifts in kind, as well as from institutional donors including Unicef and United States Agency for International Development.

Total spending stood at £3m, up from £2.8m in 2019/20. The charity’s reserves have increased to £690,000.

Asked whether the legacy came from Prince Philip, Prince Harry’s grandfather who died in April 2021, a Sentebale spokesperson said: “The legacy referred to in our 2020/21 annual report & accounts is not a gift from Prince Philips estate. The legacy noted in our accounts is from a Sentebale supporter. 

“The charity accounting standards required us to disclose that a legacy had been pledged, even though probate had not yet been granted. Given the final valuation is to be confirmed we cannot provide any further details at this stage.

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