HMRC Gift Aid investigations doubled last year | Northern Rock Foundation to close | Charity Commission chair says Islamic extremism is 'deadly' problem

Plus: FRSB urges Institute of Fundraising to review its codes | Institute of Legacy Management proposes merger with Institute of Fundraising | Terminally ill teenager raises more than £1.5m for cancer charity

HMRC carried out 1,057 checks and audits of Gift Aid claims in 2012/13
HMRC carried out 1,057 checks and audits of Gift Aid claims in 2012/13

The number of investigations made into charity claims for Gift Aid made by HM Revenue & Customs more than doubled last year. Figures obtained by the accountancy firm Wilkins Kennedy under the Freedom of Information Act show that HMRC carried out 1,057 checks and audits of charity claims for Gift Aid tax relief in 2012/13, compared with 510 the year before.

Grant-maker the Northern Rock Foundation is to close after it failed to reach an agreement over future funding with Virgin Money, which was its sole source of income. The grant-maker, which supports organisations that tackle disadvantage in north-east England and Cumbria has made grants totalling £215m since 1997.

Although Islamic extremism is not the most widespread problem the Charity Commission faces it is "potentially the most deadly", according to the regulator's chair William Shawcross. In an interview with the Sunday Times newspaper, Shawcross also said the Charity Commission should be given stronger legal powers to tackle abuse and mismanagement.

The Fundraising Standards Board has asked the Institute of Fundraising to review its codes of practice after the self-regulation body rejected a complaint about the PDSA’s fundraising methods. The complaint was made to the veterinary charity by a solicitor on behalf of someone who claimed the charity had taken advantage of their sick mother, who suffered from schizophrenia, by accepting several large donations from her over a 14-month period.

The Institute of Legacy Management has proposed becoming part of the Institute of Fundraising, in order to improve efficiency and promote an understanding of legacy management across the sector. ILM members will be asked to vote on the proposals at an extraordinary general meeting, which is expected to take place by the end of May.

A teenage blogger with terminal bowel cancer has raised more than £1.5m for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Nineteen-year-old Stephen Sutton was diagnosed with the disease aged 15 and began raising money for the charity as part of a "bucket list" of activities that he wanted to complete before he died.

This is a selection of the top stories: for the week's full output, click here.

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