HMRC has published the latest statistics on the value of creative tax reliefs. Charities undertaking relevant activities may be able to benefit from the Museums and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief, Theatre Tax Relief and Orchestra Tax Relief, although the statistics do not break down the specific value of reliefs to charities.
Theatre Tax Relief
- In 2018-19, £78 million of Theatre Tax Relief (TTR) was paid out relating to 930 claims, broadly in line with the previous year. Each claim can be for more than one production, so these claims represent 3,380 productions, of which 950 were touring and 2,430 non-touring.
- Since TTR was introduced in 2014, £208 million has been paid out relating to 2,520 claims, which represents 8,395 productions.
Orchestra Tax Relief
- In 2018-19, £16 million of Orchestra Tax Relief (OTR) was paid out relating to 120 claims, representing 555 productions.
- Since OTR was introduced in 2016, £23 million has been paid out relating to 170 claims and 770 productions.
Museums and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief
- Since Museum and Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief (MGETR) was introduced in 2017, £4 million has been paid to 50 claims, representing 300 exhibitions. This was the first year that statistics were available.
Theatre Tax Relief (TTR) was announced in the Finance Act of 2014 and was introduced on 1 September 2014. Theatrical productions do not need to pass a Theatrical Cultural Test. Production companies are eligible to claim TTR if:
- it is a qualifying production company engaged in the making of theatrical productions
- the production is intended to play before a live audience of paying members of the general public, or is provided for educational purposes
- it has a minimum 25% EEA expenditure.
It has two rates of payable credit, 25% for touring productions, and 20% for others.
Orchestra Tax Relief (OTR) was announced at Autumn Statement 2014 and was introduced on 1 April 2016. Orchestral productions do not need to pass an Orchestral Cultural Test. Where a company is an Orchestral Production Company, each qualifying concert or series of concerts is treated as a separate orchestral trade if OTR is claimed in respect of that concert or series. A concert is qualifying if:
- the concert is an orchestral concert
- the concert is intended to be performed live to paying members of the general public or provided for educational purposes
- the instrumentalists number at least 12
- none, or a minority of, the musical instruments is electronically or directly amplified
- at least 25% of the core expenditure on the concert must be European Economic Area (EEA) expenditure.
There is one rate of payable credit of 25% for both touring and non-touring productions.
Museums & Galleries Exhibition Tax Relief (MGETR) was announced in Budget 2016 and introduced on 1 April 2017. Exhibitions do not need to pass the cultural test. It is available to qualifying companies that put on a qualifying exhibition: a curated public display of an organised collection of objects or works which are considered to be of scientific, historic, artistic or cultural interest. A single object can also constitute an exhibition. A company qualifies if it:
- is the primary or secondary production company for the exhibition
- is a charitable company which maintains a museum or gallery, or is a company wholly owned by a charity that maintains a museum or gallery, or is a company wholly owned by a local authority that maintains a museum or gallery
- intends from the planning stage that the exhibition should be public
- spends at least 25% of the core expenditure of the exhibition within the EEA.
Relief is given by way of an additional deduction when calculating the taxable profits or losses. So, it either reduces the taxable profits or creates or enhances a loss, a proportion of which can be surrendered for a tax credit.