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Tax breaks boost for sports clubs

Grassroots sports clubs are to receive tax breaks from the Government to help increase participation.

More than 40,000 clubs will be able to keep up to £80,000 in revenue from bars, cafes and hiring out facilities before having to pay any corporation tax.

Clubs will also receive deductions to better support players with fees and expenses, and businesses will be able to donate to sports clubs tax-free for the first time.

Corporations and local businesses that give money to sports clubs will be able to offset their donation against their corporation tax bill, encouraging larger donations.

To qualify for the tax reliefs clubs cannot charge more than £31 a week in membership fees and any club that charges more than £10 per week in costs will have to offer special discounts.

The tax benefits come from an extension to the Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC) relief scheme, which now allows clubs to generate up to £50,000 from trading and £30,000 from rental incomes.

More than 6,000 clubs have benefited from the CASC scheme, saving over £100 million in business rates relief alone and more than £12 million from Gift Aid.

The scheme is being run with organisations such as the Football Association (FA) and the Rugby Football Union (RFU).

Nicky Morgan, economic s ecretary to the Treasury, said: "Many of the stars of Team GB started their careers in local sports clubs and I've no doubt they'll be the breeding ground for tomorrow's British Olympic legends too.

"But the wonderful thing about local clubs is that they are open to anyone who wants to get involved; whether as a way of getting fit or simply of meeting new people and making friends.

"These new rules will help community amateur sports clubs continue to offer a local, affordable place to take part and I hope that even more people are encouraged to become involved in sport locally."

Alex Horne, general secretary of the FA, said: "The Community Amateur Sports Club scheme provides a huge boost for our grassroots clubs.

"It's great to see the scheme reinvigorated in a way that provides more flexibility for amateur clubs and will allow more clubs to register to become a CASC.

"Football has over 29,000 grassroots clubs across England and we are looking forward to seeing more of them benefiting from the scheme.

"The rate relief, tax benefits and fundraising opportunities that being a CASC offers means clubs can invest more in creating a great grassroots offering for the millions of boys and girls, men and women who play football up and down the country."

RFU development director Steve Grainger said: "This scheme is vital to help those clubs invest in their facilities and people, whilst keeping memberships affordable, so that rugby can truly be a game for all."


From Belfast Telegraph