This week’s prize draw for newsletter readers, for the Charles Mingus Original Album set, has had a big response.There can, (aw) there will be only one winner, drawn from the hat on Tuesday night. The five album set is inexpensive…
But in checking what the price should be, I discovered a murkier story….I knew CD retailing was tough, but I wasn’t aware quite how tough.
If, as I would earnestly recommend, you choose to buy it from a small retailer, such as my friends Ian and Judy of Crotchet.co.uk who run family business in Birmingham (here’s their Mingus album listing), or Rise Music in Cheltenham.. you will pay VAT on your purchase and it will probably cost you £13.99
But, as Voltaire wrote as long ago as 1770, “God is on the side of the big batallions.”
Amazon.co.uk ship from the Channel Islands, and avoid VAT on sales. As, I believe, do Tesco. For those interested in this uphill battle on behalf of onshore retailers vatloophole.co.uk has the detail. Amazon don’t just find the loopholes in Europe, they find them and fight their corner in the US in similar fashion (here’s the story). A specialist told me today that the California state legislature has been fighting this one for years.