Registering as charitable to the tax office (that's the UK advisory up thar) also helps convey legal status.
Seriously though, what can I do to ensure Pastafarianism gains full legal status? I'd love to help out on this one. I'm not sure whom to ask.
There is only one 'legal' religion in England: the Church of England. There is only one 'legal' religion in Scotland: the Church of Scotland. The other non-established churches have no legal status as religions, but they do register as you said as charities and seek charitable status from HMRC.
Religions also need buildings insurance, public liability insurance, employers liability insurance, they need to pay business rates on their churches, but they negotiate these at lower rates than standard commercial rates (there was a big fuss a couple of years back about an English council, could have been Bath and North-East Somerset, giving preferential business rates to the Scientologists, despite the fact that they are
ing loaded. It was in Private Eye).
These all tend to be done on the basis that you are doing business with a religious or spiritual organisation - as in the organisation is not for profit, and it provides a community service, so it looks good to the rest of the community if you cut the religious organisation a good deal. Having a 'legal status' as a religion is not such a big deal in the UK as religions are not tax-exempt as they are in the US (ever wondered why Al Green became the Reverend Al Green, why James Brown, MC Hammer and loads of other musicians became ministers? They don't pay income tax in the US).