Warning as VAT compensation welcomed

Published: Monday, May 21, 2012

 

The National Churches Trust has welcomed the Government’s decision to provide a £30 million package to help churches hit by the planned imposition of VAT on alterations to historic buildings.

It has, however, warned that the compensation package is cash limited and only guaranteed for the duration of this Parliament.

Claire Walker, Chief Executive of the National Churches Trust said:

 “Many listed churches apply to us for funding to extend the use of their buildings for the benefit of their congregations and to enable their use by the wider local community.  Often this involves practical solutions such as the provision of toilets and kitchens. The planned imposition of  VAT on such projects would have increased their cost by 20%. The Government’s £30 compensation package means that listed places of worship will now find it easier to carry on with projects which enable them to open up more fully to the community, a process which both serves local people and helps sustain the life of listed church buildings.” 

Cash limited

 “We will, however, need to see how effective the Government’s compensation package will be in practice as funding allocated is cash limited. We will also press that the compensation package remains in place for the long term as the scheme will be guaranteed only for the duration of this Parliament.”