Press Release: Government responds to GMA on Red Diesel

HM Treasury has responded to the Grounds Management Association’s recent letter calling for a change to the guidance on rebated fuels entitlement.  

Within two weeks of receiving the GMA’s letter, HMRC updated its guidance on Using rebated fuels in vehicles and machines, to add ‘land maintained by a community amateur sports’ to the list of those able to use red diesel following the regulatory change on 1 April 2022.   

The GMA welcomes this clarification but has concerns that although this is good news for Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) registered with HMRC, it falls far short of benefitting the wider sporting community.  

GMA CEO, Geoff Webb says:  

“The HMRC’s policy reform paper made clear in its impact statement that there would not be a withdrawal of an entitlement to use red diesel in areas such as sports, yet the guidance does not reflect that commitment.  

“We are delighted that the HMRC has updated its guidance to make clear that amateur sports clubs can continue to benefit from the fuel rebate. This will benefit over 7,300 clubs.  

“But it doesn’t go far enough as education establishments, professional sports clubs, and the many contractors who maintain sports and leisure grounds across different settings will be hit hard in the pocket at a time when they are facing significant cost increases.  

“We will continue to engage with policymakers to seek an exemption for all sports and not just the few. These businesses need sufficient lead time to phase out equipment that uses red diesel to power specialist vehicles and machinery, and we will continue to push the case across all sports at all levels for a reinstatement of the entitlement.”   


The Grounds Management Association 

Established in 1934, the Grounds Management Association (GMA) is the UK’s leading industry body for the sports turf and grounds care sector. 

A not-for-profit membership organisation, the GMA promotes and protects the interests of professional and volunteer grounds people who make sport possible by keeping green spaces and playing surfaces safe, accessible, and sustainable across educational establishments, community facilities, and sports clubs at grassroot, amateur, and professional levels. 

Together with members, we work with organisations, industry bodies, public sector authorities and technical specialists to develop and promote industry standards and best practice, provide education opportunities and career pathways, publish industry news and insight, and promote the profession to help attract and build a sustainable skilled talent pipeline for the future. 

The GMA is a government accredited organisation meeting the Matrix Standard for the provision of high-quality technical information, advice, and guidance, and further supports the wider industry by providing a series of industry-leading knowledge building and networking events, including Europe’s largest sports amenities and landscaping trade exhibition, SALTEX.