Royal Albert Hall administrators are selling tickets for Last Night Of The Proms for up to £1,200

Royal Albert Hall administrators are selling Last Night Of The Proms tickets for up to £1,200 – two years after the taxpayer bailed out a struggling concert venue with a £20million injection

  • Almost a quarter of the 5,272 seats in the Royal Albert Hall belong to 330 members
  • RAH urges them to return unused tickets so they can be sold to the public
  • It would net seat holders £5,000 a year if they gave up tickets for all events
  • But many choose to sell them instead, bringing in up to £20,000 a year

Trustees and members of the Royal Albert Hall are selling Last Night Of The Proms tickets for up to 12 times their face value – two years after the taxpayer had to shell out £20million to bail out the struggling concert venue.

Critics last night accused them of presiding over a ‘national disgrace’ for cashing in as the London venue owes its existence to a huge loan from the government’s pandemic culture recovery fund.

Richard Lyttleton, former chairman of the Royal Albert Hall (RAH), a registered charity, said it “exemplifies an almost breathtaking sense of entitlement”.

Almost a quarter of the 5,272 seats in the Royal Albert Hall belong to 330 members. Costing around £150,000 each, they are owned by banks, large organizations and wealthy individuals.

The Mail on Sunday has found dozens on sale that are owned by members – including two trustees who sit on the charity’s board – at eye-watering sums

The RAH is urging them to return tickets they don’t use so they can be sold to the public, which would earn seatholders some £5,000 a year if they gave up tickets for all events. But many choose to sell them instead, bringing in up to £20,000 a year.

The Mail on Sunday has found dozens on sale that are owned by members – including two trustees who sit on the charity’s board – at eye-watering sums. These include Leon Baroukh, 44, its vice-chairman, whose family owns 47 seats believed to be among those listed on the Viagogo website for over £1,200 for Last Night Of The Proms on September 10.

The markup on the £95 face value is legal, but critics question whether trustees of a non-profit should benefit financially, while the Charity Commission is said to be unhappy with the implementation.

The charity is taxpayer funded, pays no VAT, saves up to £3m a year on corporation tax and leases its land in Kensington, west London, to only 5p a year.

The markup on the £95 face value is legal, but critics question whether trustees of a non-profit should benefit financially, while the Charity Commission is said to be unhappy with the implementation.  The event is seen in 2020

The markup on the £95 face value is legal, but critics question whether trustees of a non-profit should benefit financially, while the Charity Commission is said to be unhappy with the implementation. The event is seen in 2020

Administrator Iain McNay, whose music company Cherry Red Records is worth over £8million, is selling his Last Night Of The Proms tickets for £595. A couple, whose family owns 25 seats, runs a ticketing site to sell their tickets and those of other members. David and Lucinda Viner’s Hoorah Tickets website says they have provided “thousands of tickets for over ten years”. Those from Last Night Of The Proms cost up to £1,250.

The Viners, Mr. Baroukh and Mr. McNay did not comment.

Labor MP Sharon Hodgson said members who sell their tickets are “benefiting from a charity”.

The RAH said: “Members’ seats are their private property. They can dispose of tickets privately, donate them, or return them to the box office to sell on their behalf.

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