Help for Heroes made almost a third of its workforce redundant last year

The veterans charity lost 110 jobs in the year to the end of September, mainly because of issues relating to the coronavirus pandemic

The veterans support charity Help for Heroes made about one-third of its staff redundant last year as it looked to make savings of about £4m.

According to its latest accounts, to the end of September 2020, the charity spent slightly more than £1m on 110 redundancies, 89 of which were part of a Covid-19 related-restructure.

This leaves the charity with 244 employees.

It had previously estimated that about 90 roles would be at risk as a result of the pandemic.

The charity’s total income for the 2019/20 financial year fell by just over £2m year on year to £24.4m, while total spending was down more than £1m to £30.8m.

Including gains on investments, the charity reduced its deficit from £5.1m in 2018/19 to £4.3m last year.

Spending on charitable activity was stable at £22.4m.

The charity said its events income was down by 85 per cent, income from national collections was reduced by 88 per cent and community fundraising income was down by 37 per cent.

In addition, in-memory income fell by a quarter.

As well as reducing the number of staff, the charity said the pandemic led to a number of cost-saving measures, including furloughing almost 40 per cent of its staff for seven months in 2020 and putting a recruitment freeze in place.

In September last year, the charity said that three out of its four recovery centres – Catterick, Colchester and Plymouth - would remain closed for the foreseeable future.

The charity said it reached an agreement with the Ministry of Defence earlier this year which meant those recovery centres, plus Tedworth House, would be operated and funded by the MoD for 12 months.

A spokesperson said: “During the lockdowns, our teams moved swiftly to adapt, so our recovery services could continue to be delivered remotely.

“With the effects of the pandemic now easing, we continue to find ways to reach more veterans and their families than ever before.

“In the past year we have developed our recovery services, both digitally and in the community, so that we can reach more veterans and their families wherever they live and whatever their needs.

“We believe this will deliver the best possible outcomes for our veterans and make best use of every generous donation we receive from the public.”

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