Valuation for rating – Refusal of Committee to refer to Tribunal – Appeal – Luxury hotel – Valuation by reference to scheme – Difficulty and complexity – Relevance of decision as guide to future valuation of same subjects – Lands Tribunal Act 1949, section 1(3B) – Valuation Appeal Committee (Procedure in Appeals under the Valuation Acts) (Scotland) Regulations 1955, Regulation 5(1)(a), (b) and (d)

Gleneagles Hotels Ltd v Assessor for Tayside Valuation Joint Board
28 November 2003

The subjects were a luxury hotel complex. The basis of appeal was that the scheme used for valuation of hotels in Scotland was based on turnover and could not be applied to the subjects because of their unique characteristics. They were much larger than any hotel used as the basis of the scheme and had unusually heavy overheads. These differences were said to be so significant that the scheme could not be applied. The basis of assessment should be by reference to receipts and expenditure. The Assessor contended that the scheme provided an appropriate basis. Proper comparative allowance could be made.

Held: (1) The Tribunal was satisfied that the material was not beyond the expertise of a typical committee in terms of difficulty but considered that complexity raised different questions. There was a lot of detailed factual material which, having regard to the nature of the argument might well not be capable of agreement. On the information available to the Tribunal it appeared that the case could be regarded as “complex” within the meaning of Regulation 5(1)(a). (2) However complexity of fact did not mean that there would necessarily be any complexity of expert opinion; (3) The Tribunal was not persuaded that Regulation 5(1)(d) was wide enough to cover a situation where the decision in relation to particular subjects would only provide a guide to valuation of the same subjects at a future valuation.

See full decision:  LTS/VA/2003/63