4 Jun 2015

Charlotte Church: ‘I’d pay 70 per cent tax to save services’

The singer Charlotte Church has said she would be prepared to pay a 70 per cent top rate of tax if it would end the governments austerity measures.

Speaking in support of a forthcoming anti-cuts march in London, she said that she felt the public has been “misled” over the economy and attacked the Conservatives’ planned cuts to public spending.

“The welfare state is everything, it’s our fire service, it’s our NHS, it’s our education, our travel network; it’s everything we have. So, we will all be affected by these cuts and I think, as soon as people realise the extent of it and how it really is going to impact pretty much all of us, I think they’re going to be a lot angrier and a lot more discontent than they are now,” she told reporters.

Ms Church added that the way the government has talked to the public about the economy was “unfair and unacceptable”.

And, after being asked whether she would be willing to take a larger share of the burden in order to protect public services, she said: “I’ve paid all my taxes since I was six years old. I would happily pay more. I would totally be happy if it was raised to 60 or 70 per cent.”

When asked about how her own financial fitted with her support for the People’s Assembly’s march, she said that did not believe that poverty was a “prerequisite for empathy”.

Ms Church said that Britain would see a “broad coalition against the vicious attacks from this vindictive government”, adding: “It hasn’t taken the Conservative government very long to attack unions by planning ballot thresholds, when it only had the support of 24 per cent of the electorate.”

Organisers of the march, which is due to take place on 20 June, said that 70,000 people had already pledged support and said they believed the attendance would be in the hundreds of thousands.

Unions, politicians, campaign groups and celebrities are all due to take part in the march from the City of London to Parliament. Ms Church urged people to go along, saying: “staying at home and doom-mongering doesn’t do anyone any good.”

Steve Turner, assistant general secretary of Unite, predicted it would be the biggest protest for years. Further demonstrations will be held on the day of the Budget next month and outside the Conservative Party annual conference in October.