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Government scraps rain tax on clubs

Hilary Benn

Environment secretary Hilary Benn announced the Government's intentions at the ongoing Labour Party conference in Brighton

The England and Wales Cricket Board welcomes the Government’s decision to halt large increases in charges for surface water drainage for voluntary and community groups, by legislating to allow water companies to run concessionary schemes for them.

The decision to scrap the proposed ‘rain tax’, announced today by Environment secretary Hilary Benn on Monday, follows a lobbying campaign on behalf of local sports and community clubs nationwide, supported by the ECB together with the Scout Association, The Football Association, Lawn Tennis Association, the Rugby Football Union and the Church of England.

ECB chief executive David Collier said: “The ECB is most grateful to the Minister for reviewing the submissions and evidence presented on behalf of sports and community clubs throughout England and Wales and acting upon the unfair burden this was imposing.

“The ECB has received many examples of the impact these charges would place on clubs and we are delighted by the Minister’s statement and look forward to an early implementation of the change to these punitive charges.

“I know this news will come as a very welcome relief to many of our clubs whose financial stability had been seriously threatened.”

The Scout Association said: “We are delighted that the Government has worked with us collectively to resolve this matter.

"We will be seeking assurances from all of the main political parties for wide-ranging cross-party support to make sure these measures become law in the Floods and Water Bill to protect community and voluntary groups which are the lifeblood of many communities.”