LOOT and EXTORTION Dedicated To H.M. Inland Revenue
), poking fun at the Inland Revenue.
The beginnings of the Inland Revenue date from 1665, when a Board of Taxes was set up following the introduction of special taxes to pay for the
Second Anglo-Dutch War. A central organisation to supervise the collection of the special taxes was required.
Taxes administered by the Board of Taxes included the land tax, first levied in 1692, together with an assortment of other assessed taxes, including taxes on houses,
windows and dogs. Income tax was introduced in various forms in 1797, 1799, 1803 to 1816, and then reintroduced as an annual tax in 1842 which is formally renewed in each year's
A separate Board of Stamps was created by the
Stamps Act 1694. During the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries at various points as financial strains on the economy demanded, and Parliament allowed, stamp duties were extended above a certain threshold of sale value to cover
armorial bearings (coats of arms). One further category is the most widely cited example of an unpopular and most difficult to enforce tax, the
Duty on Hair Powder Act 1795. The last stamp taxes to remain are
stamp duty land tax and
stamp duty reserve tax however stamping has ceased in favour of numerical certificates.
In June 1833, a single body of Commissioners was set up to merge the revenues of stamps and taxes. The Board of Taxes and the Board of Stamps were formally combined under the
Land Tax Act 1834.
The Board of Inland Revenue was created under the
Inland Revenue Board Act 1849, after the Board of Excise and the Board of Stamps and Taxes were amalgamated. Responsibility for
excise taxes was transferred to the Board of
Customs and Excise in 1909.
In 1995 to help promote self-assessment tax returns, Inland Revenue created the character of
Hector the Tax Inspector to help in their advertising campaign.
Budget included proposals to merge HM Customs and Excise with the Board of Inland Revenue to form a new department,
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). The merger was implemented by the
Commissioners for Revenue and Customs Act 2005 with effect from 18 April 2005.