Scottish Charities Conference 2021

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 England please see our Charities Conference alternative.

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Full conference agenda

Maureen Mallon, OSCR

We will be joined by the Chief Executive of the Scottish Charity Regulator, Maureen Mallon, who will provide key updates and highlight the latest guidance from the regulator.

David Membrey, Adapta Consulting

The turmoil of 2020 forced many charities in the UK to reconsider their choice of finance system. Suddenly the disadvantages of an old fashioned on premises very manual and paper-based system became all too clear.

Modern cloud-based (software-as-a-service) finance systems can be used from any location requiring only a browser on a mobile device or desktop PC. They can hold all documents electronically and it is possible to build very flexible workflows to move tasks around the organisation with a minimum of effort. They also integrate much more easily with other cloud systems such as CRM or HR systems, not to mention banks, credit card companies and payroll providers.

This session will look at the advantages of some of the newer systems and the implications for processes and change management in busy charity finance teams.

Peter Herbert, Insight Training

Despite the fact that the FRS 102 SORP is now well established, it still seems to present an abundance of challenges for accountants, examiners and auditors. This session will deal with all the hot topics:

  • Recent updates to UK GAAP relevant to charities
  • COVID-19 related accounting issues for charities and how to tackle them
  • SORP compliance – the five most frequently asked questions
  • What next for the SORP?

Hear direct from a charity about what support and assistance they need from you.

Andrew Paul, Mercia Group

The last few years have seen a number of high-profile cases calling into question the reputation of individual charities and therefore the sector as a whole. 

Andrew’s session will look to the facts behind the headlines and see what the actual statistics are around reputation of the sector. It will also consider what charities can and have been doing to ensure they are not the next front-page story. 

Neil Owen, VAT Advisory Services

VAT is of course an area of concern and often undue difficulty for charities. In this session, Neil will focus on recent developments in legislation, case law and HMRC policy, including

  • charity advertising
  • input tax on investment activity and fundraising
  • temporary reduced rate for admission, catering and accommodation
  • partial exemption and business/non-business apportionment
  • zero-rating of e-publications

Louise Dunford, LD Consultancy

Given the current state of uncertainty in relation to the pandemic it is anticipated that this session will cover some or all of the following topics, but content will be adjusted according to the legal topics that are most current for charities in the UK at the time the session is delivered, media coverage of specific incidents, and the cases that have most recently been decided at appeal level.

  • Trustees’ duties, Charity Commission investigations and what they teach us about pitfalls for trustees
  • Fundraising – most recent guidance and developments
  • Commercial partnerships – take care
  • GDPR update
  • Employment Law in the Voluntary Sector
    • New employment status developments
    • Restructuring and redundancy following the pandemic
    • IR35 – what is happening?

Conference speakers

Andrew has been with Mercia for over 20 years both in technical and management roles.  Currently he is part of the Audit and Accounts technical team, lecturing on workshop and CPD sessions and is also responsible for our digital assignment portfolio, working closely with the Mercia technical content team and our digital delivery partners.

Andrew also has a particular specialism in Charities, having worked in the sector both overseas and in the UK and works on a voluntary basis with a number of organisations.

Andrew retains lots of contacts in the charity sector and is a regular volunteer at sporting events (including the London Olympics, the Glasgow Commonwealth Games and Silverstone) as well as being a keen Leicester Tigers supporter

Maureen joined Scottish Government as an HMI in 2005 following a career in the third sector. She was Head of Development and Deputy CEO at YouthLink Scotland for ten years and her work before this focussed on social enterprise and adult learning. Most recently she was Assistant Director for Education Scotland and she is currently the Chief Executive of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR).

Peter qualified as a chartered accountant with KPMG. He worked for The Financial Training Company for 6 years, the last three as a senior manager in the London office, responsible for developing courses for corporate clients. Peter presents courses to accountancy firms, companies and financial institutions. Peter's areas of technical expertise are financial reporting, auditing and practice regulation. He also writes and delivers financial analysis and personal development programmes for a range of blue chip and private companies.

Neil Owen is an independent consultant, speaker and occasional writer.  He has worked exclusively in VAT for thirty-five years, initially working for Customs & Excise and entering professional practice in 1990.  A Fellow of the CIOT and an Associate of the Institute of Indirect Taxation, he is also a Fellow of the British Institute of Agricultural Consultants.  He was for ten years the National Secretary of the VAT Practitioners Group and for six the editor of the book, CCH VAT Planning.  Neil is an experienced and enthusiastic lecturer, with the unusual reputation for making VAT interesting.

Louise has since 1987 been continuously involved in training and consultancy, both for professional firms and for commercial organisations. Until recently she also worked as an associate senior lecturer at the University of Portsmouth where she was mainly engaged on postgraduate teaching on the MBA, MA Personnel Management and MA Business Law, and she retains an active relationship with the University, having taught on their IPD courses in Grand Cayman and Guernsey. 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.

David specialises in finance systems, data protection and the use of information systems to drive charitable objectives. He develops strategies, business cases and requirements documents. He has worked with a wide range of clients including  grant makers, membership organisations & professional societies, fundraising charities and contracting, service delivery charities. He has over 30 years' experience in the not-for-profit sector having started his career working for the international development charity Book Aid International where he was responsible for finance, IT and operations. He has most recently been Deputy CEO of the Charity Finance Group.

He has spoken and written extensively on IT, risk management and charity governance. David has an MPhil from the Warburg Institute, a Diploma in Information Science from University College, London and a Diploma in Charity Finance from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. He also has had long experience of trusteeship and has been Treasurer of a number of charities including Index on Censorship and Photovoice. He is currently a trustee and Vice Chair of Keep Britain Tidy.

One Day Conference