Money matters

David Ainsworth's round-up of what's happening in the finance world

- Charities have until 31 March to recover VAT overpaid before 1997. The House of Lords (pictured) ruled last year that HM Revenue & Customs did not follow the law when it reduced the time limit for reclaiming VAT to three years. Russell Moore, not-for-profit specialist at accountancy firm Saffery Champness, said recovering VAT on fundraising for unrestricted income was a particular opportunity for charities.

- Third sector lender Social Investment Scotland has appointed a new chief executive. Craig Campbell, director of the UK not-for-profit and public sector at HBOS, will take up the post in March. He replaces Scott Anderson, who is retiring after six years in the job.

- MPs from all parties gave their backing to the development of community land trusts during a Westminster Hall debate last week. Both shadow housing minister Grant Shapps and junior housing minister Iain Wright said they expected to see growth in CLTs, investment vehicles that allow communities to develop affordable housing in their local areas.

- Futurebuilders England is running a free workshop on how third sector organisations can survive the recession. The event, on 25 March at the HBOS offices in Old Broad Street, London, will look at cash management and forecasting, business planning, evaluation and strategic working. Speakers include Gill Nunn (below), market development director at Futurebuilders, and Keith Hickey, chief executive of the Charity Finance Directors' Group.

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