Little at Large: Third sector mobilises for a regulatory Bannockburn

Anglo-Scottish animosity is on the rise, but this time it's nothing to do with football, the Barnett formula or the West Lothian question.

Blue mice call the boys in blue
Blue mice call the boys in blue

English charity lawyers are incensed by the rules the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator requires English charities to meet if they are to operate in Scotland.

"It is crazy that charities with activities in Scotland will now have to get permission from both OSCR and the Charity Commission if they want to change their names and amend their objects," wails one. The organisers of a charity law conference earlier this month had to remind delegates, intent on taking out their frustrations on two officials from OSCR, that the regulator hadn't created the law, it was merely implementing it. But among the same lawyers, there is a certain amount of schadenfreude that Scottish charities still have to comply with English charity law to get tax relief. Fight, fight ...

- This column is loath to fuel panic about feral youths, but it has a duty to report an incident that occurred in east London last week. Everyclick - the search engine that gives to charity - has a promotional blue mouse, which was handing out leaflets in Tower Hamlets when it was spotted by some youngsters who, giving new meaning to the term charity mugger, pulled its tail off and beat the animal around the head with it. Both mouse (apart from loss of tail) and occupant were unharmed, and the mouse would like to point out that the incident was simply "boisterous fun".

- There was some banter between third sector glitterati at Lord Heseltine's 50th anniversary party for his Haymarket magazine group last week. On spotting the Directory of Social Change's Debra Allcock Tyler, Acevo's Stephen Bubb said: "Ah, the wicked witch!" Quick as a flash, Allcock Tyler, replied: "Is that me, Stephen, or you?" The pair are firm friends.


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