Newmarket trainers agree to contest plan to increase business rates
Newmarket's trainers have agreed to form a group and put together a plan to contest the government's latest business rates revaluation that could see the basic rateable value of yards across the town soar by 53 per cent.
For a number of Newmarket's top trainers the increase to their bill will be well into six figures, and there is fear among the smaller yards that the hike could prove fatal.
Trainers in Newmarket met on Monday to discuss their options, and National Trainers Federation chairman Mark Tompkins said: "I feel we got somewhere.
"Bill Simpson [chartered surveyor and representative of 22 Newmarket trainers] was on hand and there were lots of different opinions. Everyone put forward their point of view and the consensus is it's a very dramatic rise, so we're going to form a group, get our strategy in order, then meet the valuation officer in the new year."
Explaining the complexities Newmarket presents, Tompkins added: "It's a very diverse town; there are some very big trainers but also some very small trainers, while the Bury Road side would be more popular than the racecourse side – it's a bit of a postcode lottery – so we can't all be grouped together.
"I'm very concerned about the escalating costs for members, I know a lot of them aren't making money as things stand and they can't put their fees up, so such a large rise in costs is very alarming."