This is a question that I pose for people anywhere to think about and answer because, where I reside, the government’s tax authority for Inland Revenue used a ploy recently to say that pursuit of lighter-than-air (LTA) solutions for airships and other LTA aircraft development is a hobby. The result of this ploy was that I had to pay back a considerable sum of money (for an individual) they previously allowed for expenses incurred in pursuing the business and now no longer get tax relief for it. I now also can’t recover value added tax on business purchases either. Naturally, I think it’s an abuse of power by them that is unlawful, but fighting such people is rather difficult.
I guess my question could have been put in a different way (e.g. are airships wanted?), as this affects the airship industry generally and the pursuit of Luffships (new offerings); where, at the moment there are very few in service. The reason appears to be twofold:
1) Numerous other businesses pitched in with huge transport category projects when none existed and then failed to deliver, upsetting everyone.
2) At the low normal/commuter end of the industry, existing types are having a hard time against other new ways of doing things (drones, the internet, social media, to name a few) so are closing their operations.
I think that new ways are needed, which Luffships.com was set up to provide, but realise that there’s no point in pursuing them if not supported! Well, should I continue?
Answers would be appreciated.
Luffships.com Founder and Technical Leader