Business rates frozen for Heapey livery yard owner

Derek Bolton of Bluebell Liveries, Heapey. Photo: David Hurst
Derek Bolton of Bluebell Liveries, Heapey. Photo: David Hurst

An owner of a horse stables in Heapey is celebrating a cap on his business rates.

Derek Bolton, of Bluebell Liveries in Trigg Lane, had been slapped with a 1,362 per cent increase in his rates after an overhaul by central Government. But following an article in the Guardian he will only have to pay a fraction of the cost he was initially told he had to cough up.

When the Government launched a revaluation of its business rates on April 1 this year Derek, 54, was landed with a bill of £8,250 a year – up from £564. He warned that the hike would bankrupt his business but now Chorley Council has put a temporary cap on his payments until the next Government comes in. It means that Derek only has to pay £600 a year - that’s £50 a month.

“Thanks to the story in the paper I had a letter saying that I was eligible for this capping because I was on a cliff-edge bracket,” said Derek.

Business rates are based on the value of the property a business is located in – not how much profit the firm makes. This year’s rates are based on the value of the premesis in 2015 and brings the commercial tax charge into line with the value of the property market since the the last revaluation took place seven years ago.

Chorley Council has said that Derek’s rates will be capped until it receives further notice from Government as to how the £300m relief package, which was introduced in this year’s spring budget, will be shared out. Asim Khan, director of customer and digital, added: “If any businesses are facing difficulties in paying their bill, we would encourage them to contact us immediately.”

Of the £300m relief, businesses hit badly in the North West will see £22.2m being allocated to the region.

However it will be up to the Government elected following the June poll to decide how the funds should be shared out.