FINANCE NEWS: London's voluntary organisations receive highest income in the UK, research reveals

Patrick McCurry

The financial dominance of London-based charities has been highlighted in new research from investment managers Close Wealth Management. The study reveals a gulf between the income of charities in the capital and the rest of the UK.

The research also reveals wide variations in the average income of charities different English regions, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

London-based general charities have an average income of £335,000 compared with £55,000-£86,000 in most English regions. The wealthiest English region outside London is the south-east, which takes in £106,000.

Wales comes bottom in the total rankings, at just £42,000 per charity. Northern Ireland, despite having the lowest number of charities at around 3,500, comes second to London in the level of income per charity, at £187,000.

Martin Smith, chief executive of Close Wealth Management, said there were significant differences in both the total income of charities in each region and the income per head of population.

"The average income per person in most regions is only 1p, with the exception of 2p in the north east, 11p in Northern Ireland and 47p in London," he said.

The research, which was based partly on data from the NCVO, found that in terms of the total income of general charities, London came top, at 39.4 per cent (£6.1bn), followed by the south-east at 14 per cent (£2.3bn).

The findings follow earlier research from Close Wealth Management, which showed that charities are still £5.3bn down since January 2002 as a result of falling equity markets.

This is despite the fact that charities have recouped some £3.3bn since the stock market recovery in March this year.

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