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Business Rates Exemptions and Reliefs


Some properties are exempt from paying business rates. An exemption can be granted for a specified period, 3 months for example, or be continuous unless circumstances change.

  • Deceased persons estate
    An empty property owned by a deceased person’s estate is exempt
  • Listed buildings and ancient monuments
    All unoccupied listed buildings are exempt from business rates. Ancient and historical monuments are also exempt
  • Occupation prohibited by law
    An exemption would be granted on an empty property where legal action had been taken to prevent its use. However, if legal action had been taken to prevent one particular person or trade from using a property, it is unlikely to be exempt
  • Vacant due to crown action
    Property kept vacant due to action by the crown or local authority is exempt. This would generally cover instances such as a compulsory purchase scheme
  • Industrial exemption
  • Occupied properties exempt from rating
  • Partly empty properties
  • Small rateable value exemption
  • Unoccupied properties exempt from rating

If you think your property should be exempt please contact the revenues service on 01227 862316 businessrates@ashford.gov.uk.


Relief, or reduction, from business rates is granted to some properties and can be up to 100% of the charge.

An 80% mandatory rate relief is available to registered charities and charities exempted from registration as a charity. Registered community amateur sports clubs (CASCs) are also entitled if the use of the club is wholly or mainly for charitable purposes.

Discretionary Rate Relief Consultation

Discretionary business rate relief consultation

The first revaluation of business rates in seven years was conducted by the Valuation Office Agency and took effect on 1 April 2017.  This has seen some businesses in the Ashford borough face large increases in the rateable value of the premises they occupy.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has now stated that the government has put in place a £300m fund to enable local authorities to establish a discretionary rate relief scheme. This is intended to help businesses apply for assistance if they have suffered from the impact of the first revaluation for seven years.

Ashford Borough Council has been allocated a share of the £300m funding pot to cover a four-year period, with £350,000 funding confirmed for year one and £175,000 for year two. The council has designed a proposed scheme and from Monday 25 September it will be consulting on its proposals.

Have your say

The survey is open from 8am on Monday 25 September until Monday 6 November at 11.59pm online.

An explanation of the proposed design of the scheme, and the option to respond, are available in our consultation portal.

Note: Questions marked by * are mandatory