Thursday, 8 December 2011

Scottish Register of Tartans - proposed pricing changes

With thanks to Alison Diamond for the following concerning proposed changes to the Scottish Register of Tartans:

The Keeper of the Tartan Register is proposing to seek an amendment of the Statutory Instrument setting the Tartan Register fees to clarify the exclusion of VAT (where applicable). He also proposes to change the point at which payment for Tartan Register services is made. The consultation period will last until 20th December 2011.

The Scottish Register of Tartans, established by the Scottish Register of Tartans Act 2008 (hereafter ‘the Act’) (, has now been operational for two years and alterations need to be made to the payment system to enable the Register to be efficient, to avoid waste of resources and to operate according to standard commercial practice.

1. Clarifying the fact that VAT (where applicable) is excluded from the fees set out in The Scottish Register of Tartans Fees Order 2009 (SSI 2009 No.6 -

The current Scottish Statutory Instrument specifying the Tartan Register fees does not clarify whether VAT (where applicable) is included or excluded. This omission means that the Tartan Register has to absorb the VAT on sales where it is applicable. It is proposed therefore to specify in a revised SSI that the fees stated exclude VAT where applicable.

It should be noted that as a result of this clarification, the cost of registering a tartan for EU customers will rise from £70 to £84, and the cost of requesting the amendment an entry will rise from £40 to £48.

2. Changing the point at which payment for services offered by the Scottish Register of Tartans is taken from customers.

Since the Scottish Register of Tartans commenced business on 5th February 2009, payment for the registration of a tartan and to amend an entry on the Register has not been taken until processing has been successfully completed. Unsuccessful applications to register or amend tartans have incurred no fee, despite the resources expended in checking and processing the applications.

It is therefore proposed that payment for registration or amendment should be made by customers at the point when they first s_ubmit an application to register a tartan or request an amendment. This change will bring the administration of the Register into line with the Act.

The Act does not require the Keeper to refund a customer except in the instance of the reconsideration of a previously refused application (SRTA Section 8). It is proposed, however, to offer a refund of £30.00 + VAT (from the £70 + VAT registration fee) to a customer whose application to register a tartan is unsuccessful. This represents an element of the staff costs required to assess the application. It is not proposed to offer a refund from the £40 + VAT fee for requesting an amendment.

The Keeper proposes that these changes, if approved, will be implemented from 1st April 2012.

Tartan Register users are invited to comment on these proposals before 20th December 2011. Please send comments by email to:, or by post to:

Scottish Register of Tartans
National Records of Scotland
HM General Register House
2 Princes Street
Edinburgh EH1 3YY

Thank you for your interest and support.

Mrs Alison Diamond
Administrator, Scottish Register of Tartans

National Records of Scotland
HM General Register House
2 Princes Street

Tartan helpline: 0131 535 1388


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