Charities Conference

Our one day charities conference has been specifically designed for partners and senior managers with responsibility for a number of charity clients.

*If you are based in Scotland, please see our Scottish Charities Conference alternative.


Who should attend the conference

Mercia's Charities Conference is a must-attend event for any accountancy firms with Charity clients.

Through this one-day virtual conference, you will get practical advice about all the latest changes and challenges currently facing the charity sector. Hear from financial experts and charities on how you can add value to your clients.


Now available: Conferences On-Demand

Following this conference, a recording of the event will be available to purchase. This gives you the ability to catch up on technical updates at your convenience. If you've already registered for the live event, you'll now receive complimentary access to the recording.


Loading events...

Full conference agenda

Peter Herbert, Insight Training

The preparation and scrutiny of charity accounts throws up many challenges. This session will update you on recent and forthcoming rule changes and also deal with a number of common problem areas:  

  • recent and prospective updates to UK GAAP and other regulations relevant to charity accounts
  • the revised SORP – the direction of travel
  • tricky accounting and audit issues and how to tackle them
  • latest ICAEW feedback on charity audits and independent examinations.

Helen Easton, Charity Commission

This session will provide a topical update that will include updates on relevant guidance and key updates on the Commission’s work.

James Hurst, Mercia Group Ltd

This session will focus on a selection of VAT issues that affect charities. It will be based around an update on topical items such as recent VAT tribunal decisions and HMRC policy changes, using this as a platform for considering some of the VAT challenges that are more commonly faced by charities.

Nick Sladden, RSM UK

What do the trustees of charities want from their accountants? RSM’s Top Ten Tips session will explore the key areas where trustees often require support and guidance, along with some ways that you can put this into practice. The session will provide you with ideas to enable you to ensure that the boards of your charity clients are equipped with the information they need to enable them to make good decisions and ultimately achieve their charity’s objectives.

Jon Daley, Crowe UK

This session will provide a general update of recent tax developments relevant to the charity sector, together with a refresh of key tax pitfalls and opportunities for charities.

Louise Dunford, LD Consultancy

This session will cover:

  • Duties of trustees
  • Investigative powers of the Charity Commission
  • How and why do trustees commonly fall foul of regulatory authorities?
  • Case studies and examples of current CC investigations
  • Sanctions and implications of breach
  • Sources of information and advice.

Conference speakers

Peter Herbert

Peter qualified as a Chartered Accountant with an international accountancy firm before working in industry. He has over 20 years of training experience. He writes and presents technical updates for firms of accountants and qualified accountants of private and listed companies. Peter specialises in financial reporting, auditing and practice regulation. Peter also regularly carries out compliance reviews for firms of accountants which provides him with an invaluable insight into the practical financial reporting and auditing issues that they face.

Helen Easton heads up the Operation Accountancy Team at the Charity Commission. The Team provides expert advisory support to the Commission’s regulatory cases and supports policy work that includes the SORP. Prior to working in the Charity Commission Helen has held multiple roles across Government Departments, previously working for the Competition & Markets Authority as a Financial Adviser and worked at HMRC where she headed up the Internal Audit Function for Finance’

James Hurst

James joined Mercia in October 2022 as VAT trainer and consultant. His role involves writing technical material as well as devising and delivering VAT training courses. James has a wide experience of VAT and indirect tax, beginning his VAT career with HM Customs & Excise (as it then was) before moving to the private sector in 1995 and gaining his CTA qualification. Latterly, he had VAT partner and head of VAT roles in Grant Thornton and Mazars. James was actively involved with the Charity Tax Group for a number of years and has presented on VAT topics for the Charity Finance Group.

Outside of work, music remains a keen interest. Aside from playing jazz on the tenor sax, James is a regular member of the trumpet section of the Leeds Project Big Band.

Nick has over 25 years of experience in the not for profit sector and is passionate about providing assurance, accounting and governance support to charities of all sizes. As the Head of Charities at RSM UK, he leads a team of experts who deliver high-quality services and solutions to some of the firm’s largest and most complex not for profit clients, including Top 100 charities.

Nick has a strong track record of producing and presenting best practice and commenting on regulatory developments, responding to consultations from the Charity Commission, OSCR, INPAG and FRC, and speaking at key sector events such as CFG, ICAEW, The Chartered Governance Institute, ACCA, and CIMA conferences. He also has extensive international exposure, having worked on exciting charity projects in USA, Germany, Ireland and Romania with RSM International, and completing the Governing for Non profit Excellence program at Harvard Business School in 2014.

Nick is also Chair of Trustees at the RSM UK Foundation. Outside of RSM, he enjoys volunteering and is a member of the ICAEW Charity Community Advisory Group, a school governor as well as a trustee for a national charity. He is a Liveryman of The Worshipful Company of Scriveners of the City of London. 

Jon Daley

Jon is an Associate Tax Director at Buzzacott where he has worked for 12 years specialising in the charity and the not for profit sector. Jon regularly assists clients with charitable company and trust tax returns, property transactions, charitable trading and structuring business activities, Gift Aid and other tax-efficient giving, employment tax, mutual trading, theatre tax relief and other creative industry reliefs. In addition, Jon regularly writes updates and commentary on tax developments relevant to the charity sector and also hosts a wide range of seminars to various charity groups. Jon is a qualified Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Adviser.

Louise Dunford

Louise has been continuously involved in training and consultancy since 1987, both for professional firms and for commercial organisations. She also worked as an associate senior lecturer at the University of Portsmouth. Louise specialises mainly in aspects of practical employment law, company law and on professional negligence, and has published widely in leading academic and professional journals.

She is an associate of Complete HR Ltd, providing practical and pro-active assistance with employment and HR issues for SMEs.


One Day Conference
Group of people sat in a room watching a man present stood up

The on-demand recording is now available

Released on 1 April 2024 the recording will be available to view until 31 December 2024.