Search

Canning Town homeless charity calls for help over £1million VAT bill

PUBLISHED: 18:00 16 October 2015

Members of Caritas Anchor House hand in petition to Downing Street

Members of Caritas Anchor House hand in petition to Downing Street

Archant

Residents of a homeless charity have presented a petition to Downing Street after the organisation was hit with a £1million VAT bill.

Caritas Anchor House, in Barking Road, Canning Town, recently received the hefty bill when Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) reviewed the description of the charity’s services, and changed its status from “homeless hostel” to a “residential and life skills centre”.

The change of status came after the charity began working on their new development project which includes a construction of 25 new “move on” flats.

The petition, signed by more than 100 people, was handed into Downing Street earlier today and is calling on the government to “halt” the unexpected bill.

Keith Fernett, Chief Executive of Caritas Anchor House, said: “We’ve presented this petition to Downing Street in the hope it will alert the highest levels of government to the tragedy that is about to ensue. HMRC’s heavy-handed approach shows no understanding of what we do, and the consequences if they continue to demand the VAT they believe is due.

“No-one will win if HMRC continues to pursue this matter. Vulnerable people will put at needless risk. Local authority services will put under even greater pressure. We urge the Prime Minister and the Government to heed this petition and take action before it’s too late.”

Caritas Anchor House said they had previously been advised that VAT due on the development would be in the region of £250,000.

A spokesman for HMRC said they do not comment on individual cases but explained support is available.

He added: “VAT status is a matter of law, determined by the nature and activities of the individual organisation.

“Although the tax payable in law has to be paid, we will always provide practical support and advice when approached. Time to pay arrangements may be available for those with payment problems and anyone in this position should talk to us as soon as they can so we can do everything possible to help.”

The charity provides accommodation to more than 230 homeless adults a year as well as support services to members of the local community.

For more information on the charity, visit: caritasanchorhouse.org.uk

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Newham Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Newham Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Newham Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Newham News Stories

9 minutes ago

Boris Johnson’s ex-wife is hosting adult art classes in a mosque.

Boris Johnson

This week we’re asking if our traditionally left-wing constituencies should take a different direction this general election.

Stephen Timms

Brahma Kumaris sought to purge their minds of “emotional toxins” in an effort to purify themselves “from the inside out”.

Spain
08:48

University of East London students received a royal thanks for their contribution at the London Marathon.

University of East London

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Read more

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Read more

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Newham Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now