Three directors to leave BHF as part of restructure due to ‘devastating’ income fall

17 Sep 2020 News

The British Heart Foundation’s fundraising director, its marketing lead and its healthcare and innovation director will leave the charity as part of a restructure to reduce costs. 

Over the summer the charity said it is planning for a 50% drop in its income, which it describes as “devastating”, and began a consultation on reducing its overall headcount by 300. 

Yesterday it announced a restructure that will see its total number of directorates reduced from eight to six. 

BHF will merge its fundraising and marketing teams and recruit a new executive director to lead this team.

Amanda Bringans, director of fundraising, is leaving at the end of October. She has been at the charity since 2015 and has overseen a 20% growth in the BHF’s annual fundraised income. 

She said: “The merger of the fundraising and marketing teams is the natural next step for the BHF and I’m fully supportive of the change. The drive, energy, sense of fun and determination of the fundraising team is something I will always remember and miss so much, and I feel confident that the BHF will go from strength to strength.”

Meanwhile, Carolan Davidge, executive director of marketing, will oversee the creation of the new department before leaving next spring to pursue a portfolio career. 

She said: “The BHF has been my family’s charity for over 30 years and I feel truly privileged to have worked here for the last six as an executive director. Our success is driven by our amazing people, and their passion and dedication has inspired me every day.” 

Medical and healthcare innovation merger 

BHF is also merging its medical and healthcare innovation departments. The new team will be led by medical director, professor Sir Nilesh Samani. 

Jacob West, who joined the charity as director of healthcare innovation in 2018, will leave at the end of this year. 

He said: “I’ve loved my time at the BHF. It’s an amazing cause and a brilliant team. I’m hugely proud of what we’ve achieved for people affected by heart and circulatory disease. But now is the right time for me to explore new challenges that build on my wider government and healthcare experience in the UK and overseas.” 

‘Biggest challenge in our history’ 

Like many charities BHF has been hit by the closure of its charity shops during and inability to host in-person fundraising events during lockdown. 

It is still consulting on 300 redundancies, though hopes that around 150 will be met through moving staff into current vacancies. 

For the financial year to March 2019 BHF’s income was £338m. 

It employed an average of 4,241 people. Nearly 700 were employed at its head office, while over 3,000 were employed in its retail activity. 

Nearly 90 members of staff earned over £60,000. The nine-strong executive leadership team received total employee benefits of £1.2m. 

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, who joined as chief executive in February, said: “The coronavirus crisis is the biggest challenge we’ve faced in our 60-year history, and our dedicated teams have left no stone unturned in trying to fight it. But we need to take bold steps to protect our life-saving work. 
 
“Such a challenge brings into sharp focus the core of who we are as an organisation. The changes we’re making will accelerate work that’s already underway and will protect and prioritise our ability to fund world-leading cardiovascular research. The action we’re taking should give confidence to our colleagues, supporters and beneficiaries that we will maximise every aspect of what we do in pursuit of our mission to save and improve lives, and that we will thrive as the nation’s heart charity despite the challenges ahead.
 
“We know this announcement comes at a difficult time for our talented BHF team. Whilst the decisions affecting my executive team have been taken, the implications for the rest of the organisation and the two new directorates are still to be agreed and initial proposals for how this might look will form part of the collective consultation.”

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