Charity regulation update: 27 January 2020

27 Jan 2020 News

Catch up on the latest announcements, new guidance and developments from the UK’s charity regulators. 

Charity Commission for England and Wales 

Charities being investigated 

Professional Footballers’ Association Charity 
The Charity Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into the Professional Footballers’ Association Charity, which last year received over £20m in donated television fees, saying that it has serious concerns about how the charity is being run. 

Read our full news story.

Chichester and District Dog Rescue Society

Two former trustees of Chichester and District Dog Rescue Society have been banned from holding senior charity roles after using the charity’s money improperly, including to pay for a holiday. 

Read our full news story.

Foundation for Relief and Reconciliation in the Middle East 

The Charity Commission has found that a trustee board was “ineffective” in its oversight of a trustee who misused their position, as it published the findings from its statutory inquiry. 

Read our full news story.

All Nations Community Centre

The regulator has published the findings of its statutory inquiry into the Gloucester community centre, All Nations Community Centre, which found that former trustees of ANCC “did not recognise the centre as a charity despite it being registered and established as such”. This led to trustees failing to report a serious incident to the Commission. 

Read our full news story.

CAWRM ltd 

The Charity Commission has appointed an interim manager CAWRM Ltd, also known as Jerusalem Merit, which aims to relieve poverty and financial hardship, in particular among refugees in the Middle East. The Commission opened an inquiry into CAWRM in November 2018 to investigate serious regulatory concerns about the charity’s management and finances. 

Other announcements

New board members

Imran Gulamhuseinwala and Joanne Prowse have been appointed as new board members of the Charity Commission, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport announced

Read our full news story.

New communications and policy director 

The Charity Commission has appointed Paul Latham as director of communications and policy.  He will join the charity from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in March and takes over from Sarah Atkinson, who has left the Commission to become chief executive of the Social Mobility Foundation.

Read our full news story.  

Data sharing agreement with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants

The Charity Commission has signed a data sharing agreement with the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), as part of the regulator’s attempts to tackle poor accounting practices.

Read our full news story.  

OSCR, the Scottish Charity Regulator  

Annual return deadline 

OSCR has said that 83 per cent of Scottish charities submitted their annual return on time in 2019. Charities are required to file within nine months of their financial year-end, meaning the deadline for many was the 31 December. 

The regulator revealed that 1,600 charities have still not submitted relevant documents. 

Maureen Mallon, chief executive, said: “A charity that fails to meet their obligations can damage their own reputation and potentially affect public confidence in charities.

“Annual reporting allows charities to demonstrate the great work they do. We recognise that the vast majority use this opportunity to their advantage.

“It is disappointing to see a number who have still to provide the information despite our reminders and OSCR and other bodies being there to help them. Although this number is proportionately small relative to the total number of charities, their failure is still of concern.”

Charity Commission for Northern Ireland (CCNI)

Call for charities to come forward

CCNI is asking charities to make sure that they are on its radar as part of the process to register charities in Northern Ireland.

Nicole Lappin, chief charity commissioner, said: “The Commission is currently undertaking a mammoth task, which is to register every single charity in Northern Ireland.

“We currently have over 6,100 charities registered – as can be seen on the register of charities – and we also have a public list of charities which will be called forward to apply for registration in due course.

“However, we’re aware there are still many charities which we don’t know about, particularly smaller or new organisations and trusts, and we’re calling on the trustees of those organisations to ensure we have their contact details.”

Fundraising Regulator 

New guidance on reporting fundraising activity 

The Fundraising Regulator has issued new guidance about how to report fundraising activities, after over half the annual reports it looked at failed to comply with legal requirements. The Charities Act 2016 requires charities to include a statement on fundraising in their annual report and lists what types of information the statement should include. It was the first year this kind of reporting on fundraising activities was required. 

Read our full news story.  

Civil Society Media’s Trustee Exchange conference takes place on 28 April 2020, and this year’s theme is ‘effective decision-making in a complicated world’. View the programme and book online here.


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