For months, the theatre community has been on the edge of their seats waiting for the finalization of the updated legislation from the UK government regarding the Theatre Tax Relief (TTR) program. In 2021, the tax relief was raised to 45% for non-touring productions and 50% for touring productions to help ease the pressures of the COVID pandemic. Those rates were set to reduce to 30% and 35%, respectively in 2023 and 25% and 30%, respectively in 2024. Fortunately, this week it was announced that the higher rates of 45% and 50% will continue until 2025.
The hope is that maintaining the higher rates will assist producers in providing incentives to draw additional investments and generate productions that provide additional jobs in the United Kingdom’s creative industries. It is estimated that the revenue that can be attributed to the credit may top $2 billion. This includes not only the tickets that are purchased for the shows, but funds spent in the restaurants, bars, and venues in the neighboring area.
This news is extremely welcomed for productions looking to open in the UK and is a product of the lobbying done by groups such as The Musicians’ Union (MU). Lobbyists are continuing to push for the credit to be expanded to apply to other creative industries such as the commercial music sector. Starting April 2025 these rates will be reduced to 30% and 35%, before returning to their original rates of 20% and 25% in April 2026. For orchestras, the rate will remain at 50% until April 2025, then reduce to 35% before returning to the original rate of 25% in April 2026.