Charity that owns Big Society Network says it does not have to pay money back to Cabinet Office

The ministerial department is seeking to retrieve almost £34,000 in grant funding from the Society Network Foundation

Big Society Network
Big Society Network

The Society Network Foundation, the charity that owns the Big Society Network, has said that it does not have to pay back almost £34,000 in grant funding – money the Cabinet Office is trying to recover.

The Cabinet Office said yesterday that it was seeking to recoup £33,994 of the £199,900 that the SNF received for the now cancelled children’s fitness project Get In.

The charity, which is in the process of winding up, was awarded a grant of about £300,000 in 2012/13 from the Cabinet Office’s Social Action Fund, which was administered by the funder the Social Investment Business, but did not receive the final £100,000 of it because of poor performance.

The SNF spent £134,466 of the £199,900 that it received and transferred the remainder.

A spokesman for the charity said today: "It is the charity’s position that there is no basis to demanding repayment of the grant as suggested because the Cabinet Office agreed to waive the grant conditions when the remaining grant was withdrawn, thereby enabling the balance of funds held by the charity to be applied to general operating costs. 

"The charity has set out its position to the Social Investment Business about this issue and has not yet received a response."

A Cabinet Office spokeswoman declined to comment.

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