Yorkshire-based manufacturer of bespoke museum exhibition displays Workhaus, and its sister company Glasshaus, are preparing to expand their services after assistance from Garbutt + Elliott.

The accountancy practice was appointed in a business advice role and the firm’s experts, led by tax consultant Angela Mikola, have enabled Workhaus and Glasshaus to access tax credits on their research and development (R&D) programme.

The businesses have now received a five-figure repayment, which will be used to help purchase one of the buildings they operate in.

Workhaus and Glasshaus were set up by Jim Ibbetson in 2001 and 2013 respectively. Since their launch the businesses have designed, constructed and installed display cases and museum exhibitions around the world, including for Damian Hirst’s ‘Treasures From the Wreck of the Unbelievable’ exhibition in Venice.

The companies also developed a replica of a Warrior tank for the Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers Museum and the displays in the Undercroft at York Minster.

The Sherburn-in-Elmet-based businesses have made significant investments in R&D to develop unique installations, which feature in visitor centres, museums and historic buildings across the UK and Europe.

Jim Ibbetson, managing director of Workhaus and Glasshaus, said: “The projects we work are often unique and require us to continually innovate and create new designs. We constantly undertake research and development work to provide displays and cases that meet the specific criteria of individual projects.

“We knew about R&D tax credits but until we appointed Garbutt + Elliott we were unaware of how to access the repayments. The team made the process very simple for us, provided excellent advice and guidance, and the results have been brilliant.

“The savings we have made will be used in the purchase of the building we currently lease, allowing us expand the space and increase the services we are able to provide to our customers, as well as creating a platform for us to continue our growth.”

R&D tax credits are a government incentive implemented to encourage innovation among UK companies. Under the scheme, small and medium-sized businesses can qualify for up to 26 per cent of R&D qualifying costs reduction in corporation tax liability, or up to 33.35 per cent of R&D qualifying costs as a cash repayment if loss making.

Angela Mikola, tax consultant at Garbutt + Elliott, said: “We are very pleased to have assisted Workhaus and Glasshaus access tax credits on the research and development work the companies do within their sector, as it will allow the businesses to secure their premises and continue the expansion of their services.

“Many companies are still unaware of the government’s R&D tax credits scheme, or how to make a claim, which can offset the cost of research and development and provide significant savings.


For further information about R&D please contact Rob Durrant-Walker or Angela Mikola