Southport Theatre welcomes tax relief plans

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Southport Theatre welcomes tax relief plans

The chief executive of Southport Theatre has welcomed plans to introduce tax relief for the industry, announced in last week’s Budget.

A consultation has now been launched on the proposals, with the new tax reductions coming into effect on 1 September 2014.

The initiative has been welcomed by Sir Howard Panter, Chief Executive of ATG which runs Southport Theatre. He said:

“ATG fully supports the Chancellor’s Budget proposals to extend the creative sector tax-credit arrangements to include UK theatre production. The move is both recognition of the importance of theatre to the national economy and a vote of confidence in what is a world-beating industry.

“The focus on incentives for regional touring is particularly welcome; touring productions are the lifeblood of the sector and generate significant cultural and economic impact around the country.

“Incentives like this will encourage a wider range and a greater volume of touring shows – delivering real benefits, not only to producers or those employed in the theatre industry, but to local authorities, businesses and communities throughout Britain.”

Sarah Maxfield, Northern Area Director at the Arts Council, said:

“The performing arts make a significant contribution to the UK economy and our quality of life – and the theatre tax relief is important recognition of that.

“The scheme will help to create an environment where creative risks can be taken, and where work can be more easily produced and toured. As such, it is vital that it supports the theatre sector across the entire country and benefits arts organisations that receive public investment

“During this consultation period, we will work closely with the government and performing arts organisations to ensure that the scheme helps diversify funding, thereby offering further support for the sector.”

The new theatre tax relief will support theatres across the UK, as well as touring productions. It will offer a relief rate of 25 per cent for qualifying touring productions and 20 percent for other qualifying productions.

George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said:

“The UK has some of the most innovative and exciting theatre companies in the world and is known for its ground breaking productions. I want to make sure the industry continues to thrive.

“I recognise the cultural and economic value the theatre sector brings to the UK economy. That’s why I am introducing a theatre tax relief which will support our UK theatres up and down the country.”

The theatre tax relief will encourage and support the sector to continue to develop across the UK with an emphasis on touring productions which face a higher risk.

This forms part of the government’s commitment to supporting the creative industries, highlighted in its Plan for Growth, as having the potential to drive significant growth in the UK.

The consultation will remain open until 8 May and more details are available at
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