Asthma UK: funded solely by donations
Asthma UK: funded solely by donations

Asthma UK is considering closing its offices in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales to cut its overheads.

The charity, which funds research into asthma and provides support to sufferers, said in a statement that it was looking to reduce its property costs and make more use of digital technology.

The charity said in a statement that the closures would affect effect 5.25 full-time roles across its offices in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Dan Murphy, director of external affairs at Asthma UK, said in a statement: "Like all charities, Asthma UK needs to make the most of charitable resources to help its beneficiaries. We are funded solely by donations from our supporters and last year we raised £9.3m to support the 5.4 million people in the UK with asthma through funding medical research, advocating for better care and providing direct advice and support.

"We systematically review how we can deliver best value for our donors including where we can make savings in support costs as an organisation. For example, we have looked at reducing our estate costs and how digital technology can reach more people with asthma throughout the UK to help reduce their risk of potentially fatal asthma attacks."

He said the charity would continue to invest in nation-specific programmes, but it proposed using a wider pool of clinical, analytical and policy experts to deliver them. Murphy said: "This might necessitate the closure of our physical offices in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, so we are currently undergoing a period of consultation with a number of Asthma UK staff regarding their roles in our offices in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast"

He said that it was merely a proposal to close the offices at this stage and no final decision had yet been made.

Third Sector contacted the Asthma UK offices in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales but was told that staff had been asked not to comment.

The charity’s latest annual group accounts show that it employed 82 full-time equivalent staff in the financial year to September 2014.

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