Spring Budget 2024

On 6 March, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt MP, presented the Spring Budget 2024.

Reacting to the Budget, CTG’s Chair, Richard Bray, said that:

“Although the Chancellor used his final pre-election Spring Budget to announce various “give-aways”, there were very few measures to help the charity sector.

We welcome the increase in the VAT registration threshold: it will help smaller charities avoid being drawn into the VAT net.  We are also glad to see that the relief for museums and galleries has been made permanent and that £5m has been found to help village halls – measures that help specific parts of the charity sector. The funding for medical research charities is also welcome as is the confirmation from the Government that amendments have been tabled to the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill to ensure that charities can continue to claim Gift Aid without being affected by the new consumer protection requirements in the Bill. With others in the sector, CTG has been making representations on this for some time and is glad that the Government has responded to avoid a problem emerging.

But this all comes against a backdrop of a focus on the need to improve public services – and yet the Chancellor missed a great opportunity to make a cost-effective investment in the provision of key services at a community level by helping charities with the huge amount of irrecoverable VAT that they pay each year.

Recent reports have demonstrated that charities are buckling under the strain of supporting key public services but, as many of our members have said, charities are not getting the support that they need – CTG will continue urging the Government to tackle this long-standing problem.”

The Chancellor made the following key announcements that could be relevant:

  • The VAT registration threshold for small businesses will increase to £90,000 from 1 April 2024, which will hopefully prevent many smaller charities from being drawn into the VAT net.
  • The Government will cut the main rate of National Insurance Contributions for employees from 10% to 8%. The main rate of national insurance for the self-employed will reduce from 8% to 6% on Class 4 National Insurance Contributions.
  • Amendments have been tabled to the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill to allow charities to continue to claim Gift Aid on subscription contracts, which could otherwise have been affected by the provisions in the Bill.
  • Theatres, orchestras, museums and galleries will be given permanent higher rates of tax relief from 1 April 2025. These will be 40% for theatres, museums, and galleries, and 45% for all orchestra productions and other touring productions.
  • £45 million will be provided to medical charities with life-saving research agendas.
  • £5 million will be added to the Platinum Jubilee Village Halls Fund for local village halls across England.