London

Albert Hall warned over reselling of top tickets

The charities regulator will not investigate the Royal Albert Hall after it emerged members and trustees could make thousands reselling tickets.

A legal loophole means holders of debenture-style seats at the London venue can sell them for up to £20,000.

The hall, a registered charity which is held in trust, has been cautioned by the Charity Commission.

More than 1,000 seats in the Grade I listed building are held on 999-year leases after they were sold in 1871.

This is the year the west London concert hall opened.

Holders can sell back unwanted tickets through an official return scheme.

'Complex constitution'

Tickets for the Last Night of the Proms can fetch a premium online.

But the historic venue, which has benefited from National Lottery funding, has a duty to ensure the private benefit of members is "incidental" to benefits to the charity and the public itself, the commission said.

President of the Royal Albert Hall Peta Travis said: "The hall has a unique and complex constitution.

"The hall's trustees are working with the commission to continue to maximise public benefit."

A spokeswoman for the commission said there was a framework which determined whether there was a need to open an investigation or statutory inquiry and it was not deemed necessary.

She said two issues were being looked at - the number of events that members are effectively excluded from completely and the rate at which members can sell their tickets back to the Royal Albert Hall in the future.

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