Orchestra tax battle reaches crescendo

Three Court of Appeal judges will today rule whether the Bournemouth Symphony
Orchestra (BSO) can be classified as VAT exempt as a long running tax battle
with the HM Revenue & Customs reaches its climax.

Last year, the BSO lost its a challenge to a VAT ruling in the High Court
which said that because it has a paid executive – managing director Michael
Henson – on its board, it was not ‘essentially voluntary’ and thus could not be
treated as VAT exempt.

The BSO will have the support of the Longborough Festival Opera which was
victorious in a similar VAT battle with the taxman.

The LFO will appear full operatic costume to hear the result of the
orchestra’s appeal.

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