Background and Context

Cumbria Tourism Executive Board (CTEB) has responded to and encouraged all members to review and respond to the second stage consultation of the Lake District National Park’s Review of its Local Plan. CTEB saw this as a critical opportunity for the tourism industry to help shape and develop a vibrant and sustainable Lake District for all.

Cumbria Tourism based its responses on its research findings, Tourism Strategy, CLEP Visitor Economy Growth Plan and emerging Cumbria Local Industrial Strategy, all of which recognise the importance of the Visitor Economy to support economic growth.

Cumbria Tourism research recognises that the Lake District faces significant challenges, including:

  • the need for better communications connectivity;
  • the need for skills development;
  • the limited labour supply;
  • the shortage of affordable homes;
  • an ageing workforce;
  • the potential post Brexit squeeze on replacing EU workers;
  • the challenges of accessibility and travel to work.

Response to the Revised Local Plan Consultation

We are grateful many of the points made to the first consultation have been taken into consideration and in responding to the revised version CTEB reiterates the success story of national and international significance that our tourism offer is. It is the biggest employer in the National Park and biggest contributor to the economy, generating over £1.4 billion of visitor expenditure every year supporting approximately 19k fte jobs. It also contributes heavily to what makes this a fantastic place to live and work, as well as visit.

Vision and Objectives

The strategic vision for the Lake District is that, by 2030, it will be an inspirational example of sustainable development in action. Overall, CTEB is supportive of the vision and objectives of the Draft LPR but is keen to ensure that the policies recognise the importance of and help facilitate the visitor economy to achieve economic growth and the prosperity and other benefits this brings to the county as a whole.

 

The key areas of the response focussed on:

  • Housing and Jobs
  • Sustainable Transport and Parking
  • Showcase Areas and Local Developer Contributions

Award-winning Cumbrian accountancy firm, Lamont Pridmore, is calling on businesses to seek advice if they have any questions regarding the new digital tax regime.

Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT was launched in April 2019 and thousands of VAT-registered businesses above the VAT threshold (£85,000) across the region are now recording and reporting their affairs digitally to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC).

With many facing their first reporting date in the coming months, the firm said that nationally there had been issues identified with confusion surrounding registration for MTD, which left them concerned about local businesses.

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has warned businesses across the UK that the registration process for Making Tax Digital (MTD) for VAT takes seven working days.

This means that VAT-registered businesses need to register more than seven days before submitting their first return if they want to pay their tax bill by direct debit.  Registering involves setting up a Government Gateway user ID and ensuring compatible software is in place.

Graham Lamont, Chief Executive at Lamont Pridmore, said: “Businesses are currently benefiting from a ‘soft landing period’, which will last up to a year, to get MTD for VAT in place and be reporting their affairs accurately to HMRC without facing a penalty.

“However, many aren’t aware that they must register for the scheme in order to use it and have everything in place by their first reporting date. While we have seen many businesses take some of these steps, we are worried that many more might not be fully prepared for this new tax regime.”

Graham said that looking ahead MTD would likely affect more businesses as the Government looks to extend the system to other forms of tax by April 2021 at the earliest.

This new process will require a far larger number of businesses, including those which may be individually below the VAT threshold, to report their affairs digitally on a quarterly basis, this includes sole traders with income from one or more business, as well as income from letting UK property.

Chris Lamont, a Partner at Lamont Pridmore, added: “HMRC is currently in the process of testing and releasing information on software and the options for Income Tax and Corporation Tax, so businesses outside of the net of the current regulations should also start becoming aware of what their future obligations may be.”

To find out how Lamont Pridmore can help you and your business with MTD, please www.lamontpridmore.co.uk, call 0800 234 6978 or email info@lamontpridmore.co.uk