Fresh backing for VAT battle

David Cam
David Cam
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DELEGATES at a meeting of the British Hospitality Association (BHA) have welcomed the Gazette’s campaign to get a cut in the VAT rate for tourism areas.

Pleasure Beach company secretary David Cam presented a dossier of The Gazette’s campaign pieces calling for help for the industry at a recent meeting of the organisation.

And they were so bowled over by the campaign, they took all of his cuttings to take back to their respective parts of the country.

Mr Cam said: “We discussed at the BHA meeting how we shoukld drive forward with the campaign to cut VAT.

“At the moment, then Government is refusing to acknowledge it.

“When I showed delegates what The Gazette had launched, people were walking up to me and taking the articles and they took them all.

“I was the only person attending from an attraction and they were delighted with the campaign.

“Well done to The Gazette for launching a campaign like this, was the message.

“Hoteliers from across the UK are now going to newspapers across the country – not just at seaside resorts – to try and do similar.”

The Gazette’s Slash the VAT campaign is calling on the Government to reduce the rate of VAT on accommodation and attraction ticket prices, to bring it in line with other European countries.

France and Germany have rates as low as six and seven per cent – the UK equivalent is 20 – giving European neighbours a commercial advantage over the UK.

In the Budget, the Government agreed to drop VAT on ski lift tickets to five per cent, to bring the prices in line with other European ski resorts – raising hope the tourism industry can make a similar case.

Studies have shown a reduction in VAT – notably in France – have actually increased the amount of VAT paid to the Treasury thanks to huge increase in tourism.

Mr Cam said: “We’re no longer begging the Government for this rate cut – we’re demanding it.

“This initiative is so important and we’ll make the Government take notice.

“They have not taken tourism seriously and we are determined to make them do so – it’s the largest growing sector in the UK economy.

“We expect them to take action.”