Mixed bag for charities in spending review | Regulator's funding frozen | Olive Cooke 'inundated' with donor requests

Plus: Arts Council says it faces real terms cut | Extension of disqualifications in charities bill 'unnecessary' | Justice secretary headhunted Charity Commission board member

George Osborne
George Osborne

A large increase in places on the National Citizen Service, extra funds for social impact bonds and a promise not to raid the Big Lottery Fund were among the announcements affecting the voluntary sector in the Chancellor's joint spending review and autumn statement.

George Osborne also revealed the Charity Commission is to have its funding frozen at the current level of £20.3m until 2020.

A draft report into the death of poppy seller Olive Cooke is reported to reveal that the 92-year-old pensioner received more than 460 requests for charitable donations last year.

Arts Council England has said it understands that the increase in funds it is to receive from the government will be about £10m a year over the next four years – but added that this would represent a cut of 5 per cent in real terms.

Criminal justice charities have expressed concerns that measures in the charities bill to extend significantly the list of people automatically disqualified from becoming charity trustees could represent a "direct threat to the core mission of our sector".

The Charity Commission board member set to leave the regulator to become chief inspector of prisons has said that justice secretary Michael Gove phoned him to draw his attention to the vacancy before it was advertised.


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