§ 17. Mr. Hannam
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what representations he has received since the Budget on the effect of value added tax on building alterations for disabled people and their charitable organisations.
§ Mr. Hayhoe
Since the Budget, representations have been received from 14 organisations and 28 private individuals about the effect of VAT on building alterations for the disabled and their charitable organisations. Particular concern has been expressed that the measures I announced on 29 March in reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Banff and Buchan (Mr. McQuarrie) did not go sufficiently far, in particular in not covering the installation of lifts. However. there is already provision for the zero-rating of specialised lifts for the disabled, both in their own houses or in buildings used by charities, caring for them. The relief covers chair lifts or stair lifts designed for use in connection with invalid wheelchairs and other 435W lifts designed solely for use by handicapped persons. To go further would mean extending relief to general purpose lifts which may be used by anyone, and I do not consider this to be justified. The measures we have proposed will relieve from VAT the alterations which are most important in enabling the handicapped to live a normal life.