Charity struck off for poor governance

The Charity Commission has removed a charity from its register after it failed to comply with orders to improve its governance.

The regulator froze the bank account of Watford and District Gingerbread and ordered it to sort out its governance after it was found to have no valid trustees. Employees also admitted to falsifying the minutes of annual general meetings (Third Sector Online, 18 June 2007).

The commission appointed two trustees to replace a pair that had been appointed inappropriately, according to the commission. There were complaints that governance had broken down and claims that theft had occurred.

In a follow-up report published on Friday, the commission revealed that, despite the appointment of the new trustees, the charity had been struck off the register of companies in July 2007 for failing to submit its accounts – this meant the charity effectively ceased to exist.

The commission removed the charity from its register in February but the only assets it was able to recover were £100 of gift vouchers, which it has handed to single-parent charity One Parent Families/Gingerbread.  Watford and District Gingerbreak was not affiliated to One Parent Families/Gingerbread.

The claims of theft were reported to the police but no further action was taken.

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