Letter: Palace drawings cost student dear

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The Independent Online
Sir: I am a foreign student doing an MA in fine art. During the Christmas holiday, I spent a few days in London visiting museums and galleries. I am impressed by the collections, the professionalism and the facilities (recorded hearing aids) in the National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery and the Tate. Best of all is that they have free admission.

On the last day I went to Buckingham Palace to see Da Vinci drawings. To my astonishment, I had to pay pounds 3.50.

The collection came from Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel in 1630. During the civil war he left the country. In 1690 the collection appeared in Kensington Palace, probably presented to the monarch as a civil war trophy.

To pay pounds 3.50 to see such a mysteriously acquired collection, which belongs to one of the richest women in the world, is appalling.