From the Revd Christopher Wilson
Sir, - Mr Powell's concern at the cost of church insurance (Letters, 31
January) will no doubt resonate widely. It is, indeed, a heavy
expense, which many of us would be glad to see reduced.
Premiums are inflated by Insurance Premium Tax (IPT), levied at
six per cent. From my two parishes alone, that means the Treasury
gains more than £1200 annually. (What is the figure, I wonder, for
the whole Church?) It seems invidious to lay this tax burden on
volunteers who shoulder the responsibility for much of the nation's
built heritage while also engaging with the increasing practical
and social needs of our communities.
Is it time to press for relief from IPT for listed places of
worship and charities? I have arranged to raise the matter with my
MP later this month; others may wish to do likewise. To assess the
strength of feeling, I have also set up a page at
www.facebook.com/scrapchurchipt. Please "Like" it, share it, and
add your comments, if you would support such a campaign.
Finally I have applied to set up an e-petition ("Give relief
from Insurance Premium Tax . . ."), which should go live very
shortly, and which I hope and trust you will kindly publicise.
The Vicarage, Clive House
Leamington Spa CV32 5TL