My Account

If you think you may be eligible for discretionary charitable relief, you can apply using this form.

About the relief

Discretionary relief is given to non-profit making organisations. It is given at the discretion of the Council and can be given in addition to mandatory relief. To qualify for discretionary relief the organisation must be;

  • a club, society or other organisation established and conducted wholly or mainly for recreational or sporting purposes;

or have a main objective that is;

  • charitable, philanthropic, religious or concerned with education, social welfare, science, literature or the fine arts.


The following classes of organisations are not eligible for Discretionary Business Rate Relief under this scheme:

  • Profit making organisations or organisations with a profit making parent organisation
  • Schools, colleges or other educational establishments (except nurseries which will be eligible)
  • Government funded, sponsored or commissioned organisations
  • Charity shops (unless specifically in support of a local charity)
  • National charity headquarters or administrative buildings
  • Sporting clubs or organisations with an annual membership fee (or other cost of participation) of £1,000 or more
  • Social clubs
  • Hereditaments / organisations with a Rateable Value in excess of £150,000

Where a property is eligible for relief, a maximum of £15,000 p.a. relief will be granted to any organisation or on any individual hereditament.

Eligible applications will be further assessed against the following criteria:

Sports Clubs

No relief will be granted unless the organisation draws 50% or more of its membership from within the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames.

Sports organisations will generally attract relief at 60% unless they can demonstrate that they meet the needs, in particular, of young people, people with a disability, older people or those from ethnic minorities when they may attract 100% relief.

Discretionary Top Up of Mandatory Charitable Relief

Organisations must demonstrate that the borough and / or local people benefit specifically and to a significant degree from the work they do in one of the specified policy areas above.

The Council may vary the proportion of relief it grants depending on the degree to which the applicant organisation meets the above criterion.

Other provisions

Organisations receiving Discretionary Relief in 2015/16 will be invited to complete and submit a new application which will be effective from 1 April 2016.

Those organisations which are unsuccessful in their application will be subject to a transition period during which the relief previously received will be tapered over a further 5 year period. From 2016/17, such organisations will lose 16.7% of the 2015/16 relief each year until the value of relief falls to zero.

Entitlement to relief ceases if the qualifying organisation vacates the premises or transfers the use of the premises to another organisation or individual Relief is granted for a 5 year period. A further application must be submitted if an organisation wishes the relief to continue.

View the Business Rates Discretionary relief policy(pdf, 388KB) for further information.

You will need

  • Your current Business Rates account number
  • Copies of accounts for 1 year
  • Copies of articles of association

Before you start

Your personal information provided on this form will be used in accordance with the Council’s Personal Information Policy.

The Council reserves the right to inspect and challenge evidence provided in support of an application and to request updated information, e.g membership lists, at any time.

What happens next

A letter will be sent to advise if your application has been successful or unsuccessful.

Start my request

Medium - this form usually take a few minutes to complete

Updated: 05 December 2017

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