'Musical chairs' at BWML marinas

ONE of the conditions given by the Council Valuation Office in regards to resident boat moorers and a particular form of council tax at BWML marinas is that they have to play 'musical chairs' with their boats

This means that after being at a particular berth for a set time the residents have to move their boats to another of two stated alternative berths, to comply with the less expensive 'composite' council tax that is being operated by BWML marinas.

BWML explains:

'A residential mooring will be liable for either an individual Council Tax assessment or could be part of a composite assessment within the marina. As a general rule where a boat enjoys exclusivity of the same berth all year round, then an individual Council Tax payment will be payable. Where a boat does not have exclusivity of the same berth all year round, and this can be demonstrated, then inclusion in a 'composite' assessment may be appropriate'.

The composite assessment was one legitimate council tax option open to residential customers and an alternative to paying an individual assessment, which is more expensive.

Must have planning permission

The old days of 'slipping in' a few residential berths at marinas have now gone and marinas must have planning permission for residential berths and boaters must pay council tax, either individually or in a composite scheme as outlined above.

In view of the new rules, local authorities are now checking marinas, and making sure those operating the composite option for resident berth holders are complying with the legal requirements,

Must move

In the case of BWML, it has contacted its residential customers across its marinas taking advantage of the composite system to remind them of the specific requirement to occupy two alternative moorings in addition to their home berth in order to demonstrate non-exclusivity of a berth, giving a specific date they must move by.