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Redwood Birkhill v HMRC

In Redwood Birkhill v HMRC [2018] UKUT 189 (11 June 2018) the UT found that a transaction involving the aggregation of the barrelage of public houses to secure a greater discount from brewers involved a supply of services for consideration.

Redwood owns and manages hotels and public houses. It negotiates discounts on the price of beer supplied to it as well as to public houses owned or tenanted by third parties (the ‘publicans’). In relation to the latter the issue was who was supplying to whom?

In most cases the discounts due to the publicans were paid to Redwood which paid a proportion of the discount received to the relevant publicans retaining a share of the publicans’ discounts. The amount retained was not disclosed to the publicans.

The UT found that Redwood was supplying services to the publicans. These services consisted in...

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