Macmillan Cancer Support spent almost £1.7m on severance costs last year

Macmillan Cancer Support spent almost £1.7m on redundancy and termination costs last year as part of a long-term change programme.

The charity’s latest accounts, for 2019, show the amount it spent on severance costs was £1m higher than in the previous year.

Macmillan said it was part-way through a redesign of its directorates, which had resulted in some redundancies, as part of a plan to make the charity fit for the long-term future.

The organisation was unable to confirm how many redundancies it made in 2019, but the average number of staff employed over the year was 1,943, which was actually 18 people more than in the previous 12 months.

The accounts say that of the £1.7m, amounts totalling £484,000 had not yet been paid at the end of the year.

The charity has since been hit by the coronavirus pandemic and it said last month that it expects to lose as much as £175m in income until 2022. As a result, it might have to make to make a further 310 redundancies. The consultation on those potential job losses began on Monday.

The 2019 accounts show the charity’s total income fell by about £3m last year, to £232.8m.

Income from donations was down by £2.6m year on year to £130.4m.

This included a fall in income from direct marketing, which was down by £2.8m to £30.4m over the period, while corporate income also fell, from £19.5m in 2018 to £17.6m.

However, income from events rose by £3.2m to £59.4m in 2019.

The accounts show income from trading activities was up from £17.6m in 2018 to £18.8m last year.

Overall expenditure was down from £260.8m in 2018 to £245.7m.

Responding to questions about the 2019 severance costs, Lynda Thomas, chief executive of Macmillan, said: “We want to make sure we’re operating as efficiently and effectively as we can to make our donations go as far as possible.

“Part of our focus is to ensure our organisation is fit for the long-term future, and we have a sustainable operating model that delivers for our charity.

“We are partway through a long-term change programme which will help Macmillan continue to evolve, and last year we redesigned a large number of our directorates – which, unfortunately, resulted in some redundancies.

“We have been working hard to move towards our new operating model, delivering greater efficiencies and more effective processes to ultimately better support people living with cancer.”

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