CRUK’s income down due to fall in Race for Life participants

06 Jul 2018 News

Cancer Research UK’s group income has dropped by 2 per cent to £634m, due to a decline in the number of participants in its Race for Life event, the charity’s latest annual accounts have shown.

The accounts for the year ending March 2018 show that CRUK raised £527m through its fundraising and trading activities, which was 3 per cent lower than last year.

CRUK said in its accounts that this fall in income “primarily reflected a decline in the number of participants in our flagship event, Race for Life, marginally offset by increased royalty income”.

The charity’s expenditure also fell by £13m to £652m, which came in part from a drop in fundraising spending by £7m. Its charitable expenditure decreased by 1 per cent to £466m, comprising of £423m for research, a drop of £10m from the previous year, and £43m for policy and information work.

However, CRUK said that its corporate partners have grown this year, with an “outstanding contribution of £13.4m from our continued partnerships with BT, HSBC, M&Co, Scottish Power, Tesco, TK Maxx and Ultra White-Collar Boxing”.

Legacy giving remains CRUK’s single biggest source of fundraising income, with over £181.5m raised in the year. Over 6,000 legacies were left to Cancer Research UK with some individual gifts in excess of £4m.

The income for the year for the charity only was £561.9m, down from £595.5m.

The previous yearis accounts, for the year ending March 2017, showed the charity’s total income at £679.2m, which included £32m from an exceptional gain from property transactions. This came from the completion of two major property transactions, one was the selling of its former London Research Institute (LRI) laboratory sites, and the other was from the charity committing to relocate its head office from Angel to Stratford. The head office move is due to take place in 2019.

Race for Life

CRUK said that the fall in participants in its flagship Race for Life event was due to “technology issues” which led to the charity delaying the launch of the race.

It said: “This year, due to some technology issues, we decided to delay the launch of the website until they were fixed, delaying online sign-ups for several weeks. This was disappointing, and resulted in a lower fundraising total than anticipated. However, we have worked hard to address these issues.”

Last year's Race for Life raised £32m. 

CRUK said it is positive for its 2018 Race for Life season, and said it will “continue to look for new opportunities for Race for Life in future years”.

The charity’s 2016/17 accounts had said that it had seen a fall in participants of 10 per cent, which it said was due to more competitor events.

Events fundraising in the year ending in 2018 was £49m, down from £65m the previous year. 

The charity’s highest paid member of staff was the charity’s former chief executive Harpal Kumar who earned £244,000. Kumar stood down from the charity at the end of last month. He is being replaced by Michelle Mitchell, chief executive of MS Society UK.

Kumar said: “After 11 years as chief executive, and 15 years in total, this is my final year at Cancer Research UK. It’s been an incredible experience, and I would like to thank everyone I’ve had the pleasure of working with over the years. 

“The charity’s work is far from done – cancer is still a disease that places a terrible burden on our society – but I feel proud to have led an organisation that has saved millions of lives, and will save millions more, and to be leaving the charity in prime shape to continue its progress towards our vision of beating cancer.”

CRUK’s average headcount for the group and charity both grew, with the group having 4,105 employees, up from 3,909, and the charity’s headcount growing to 3,675, from 3,504.


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