Charity to sell off some of its investment portfolio to repay part of £25m loan

St Andrew’s Healthcare plans to liquidate part of its investment portfolio to pay off part of a multimillion-pound loan facility.

According to the charity’s latest accounts, for the year to the end of March 2021, it plans to pay off 20 per cent of the £25m banking facility.

The charity, which provides specialist mental health care for people with some of the most challenging mental health needs, described the move as “financially beneficial for the organisation at this time”.

It also sold a hospital in Nottingham for £8.4m, which left it with £2m in redundancy costs related to the site during the 2020/21 financial year.

The charity’s total income in 2019/20 was £204m; however, its latest accounts show this dropped to £195.6m.

But income from trading and charitable activities remained relatively stable.

Total spending fell slightly, to nearly £207m, as did staff costs for its 3,900-strong workforce, at £190m, which included £2.6m in total redundancy payments.

Spending on charitable activities topped £189m.

Despite the need to liquidate part of its portfolio, the charity still has reserves of more than £207m.

The accounts show that the charity’s chief executive, Katie Fisher, stepped down in October.

She was paid benefits totalling £324,000 during the year.

The charity said she did not receive any redundancy, termination or bonus payments because she left of her own accord.

Fisher’s predecessor, Gil Baldwin, had been one of the highest-paid people in the voluntary sector. He took home £496,000 in 2017/18, including six months’ pay in lieu of notice, meaning his basic salary was £328,000.

The charity said the search for Fisher’s replacement was ongoing and its deputy chief executive, Jess Lievesley, had stepped into the role on an interim basis.

A spokesperson for the charity said: “The charity has made the decision to reduce its loan by liquidising a proportion of its investments because this is more financially beneficial for the organisation at this time.

“We remain committed to providing quality care to achieve the best outcomes for our patients in the most efficient manner possible. However, in the past year there have been a number of challenges that have impacted our income as a charity.”

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