Northern conference 2012

Wednesday, 13 Jun 2012, 08:45 - 18:00


Northern conference banner 2012 

This conference is kindly sponsored by

Newton logo         Zurich logo

Welcome to CFG’s fifth Northern conference. We are delighted to be in Leeds, at the Park Plaza in June 2012.

In our 25th anniversary year we are particularly concentrating on inspiring financial leadership and understanding impact.

Challenges in the operating have not abated, in fact they are arguably even more difficult this year than last.  So we’re delighted to be bringing you again a topical, relevant and packed programme of interesting and expert speakers.  Reform of the provision of public services is never far from the headlines and it is therefore timely that we have Neil McInroy, CEO of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies, delivering our opening plenary.  We also are privileged to hear from Stephen Lloyd from Bates Wells & Braithwaite on the Charities Act review.

The 2012 Northern Conference brings together eight session speakers from the corporate and charity world – covering topics including changes in the pension arena, understanding impact reporting and risks and reserves as well as legal updates and accounting essentials.

With two streams the conference provides a stimulating and thought provoking set of sessions for you to choose from.

During the day there is ample time to discuss issues and share experiences with finance professionals who are facing similar challenges. The conference can also support your personal development plan with five hours of CPD.

With excellent road and rail links from the North and the Midlands we look forward to seeing many of you in Leeds.

The Reception
Delegates attending the conference are invited to stay for the reception immediately following the end of the programme.

The reception provides the ideal opportunity to network with speakers and delegates at the end of the day.

The Exhibition
There will be an exhibition alongside the conference programme. Exhibitors working in a range of service areas will be available for delegates to meet, ask questions and share information.

The informal setting is an excellent opportunity to find products and service suppliers who can assist in tackling your charities' problems and who can help to make the management of your charity more efficient.

The conference timetable allows delegates plenty of opportunity to browse the exhibition and network during breaks.

The following companies are exhibiting at this year's Northern Conference:

Baker Tilly -
Grant Thornton -
HSF Healthplan -
LAKE Financial Sysytems -
M&G -
Newton -
PS Financials -
Rathbone Investment Management -
Sarasin & Partners -
Schroders Charities -
The Co-operative Bank -
Unity Trust Bank -
Zurich -


To view presentations please click session title link


Registration/exhibition open


Chair's welcome

Mark Hilton, Director of Finance & Resources, Museums Sheffield & CFG Trustee



Opening plenary: Public services: new business but new challenges

Neil McInroy, Chief Executive, Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES)

Public service change and reform does herald in opportunities for the charity sector.  But there are new challenges, in terms of balancing charitable values and effectiveness, within a need for public sector efficiencies.  This talk will explore the changing nature of public services and how the charity sector could and should be demonstrating its value.






1A:  2012 VAT update for charities Simon Buchan, Head of VAT and Indirect Taxes, Barber Harrison & Platt 


This session will include an update on the cost sharing exemption; supply of temporary staff; update from the tribunals and changes that have come out of the budget.

1B: Pensions

Ian Bird, Equity Partner, Foster Denovo


There is major change afoot within the pensions’ landscape.  The introduction of Pension Reform from October 2012 will see all employers having to offer a workplace pension and contribute towards eligible employees’ pensions.  Ian will consider the main aspects of this auto-enrolment, what employers need to do to comply with this legislation and ways to manage the potential cost implications.  Ian will also touch upon other key issues affecting pensions including changes to the State retirement age, the Fair Deal Framework and the Retail Distribution Review (RDR).


TEA/COFFEE break & time to explore the exhibition






2A: Investment

Kate Rogers, Chair, & Oliver Bates, Charity Investors Group

Struggling to devise your charity’s investment policy? CFDG and Charity Investors Group have developed a model investment policy that covers all the points you need to consider when investing your charity’s funds.  The model policy builds on the Charity Commission's new guidance on investment (CC14). This session will talk you through the core regulatory requirements, what you need to cover in a policy, and how to use the model template for your own charity.

2B: Demonstrating the difference you make 

Milla Gregor, Consultant and Trainer (Evaluation), Charities Evaluation Services

It’s more important than ever for charities to monitor and report not only financially, but also socially, on the difference their work makes. A corresponding array of approaches has emerged– outcomes, impact, social return, triple bottom line – which can sometimes add to the pressure! Milla Gregor, evaluation consultant and trainer at Charities Evaluation Services will give you a tour of the main approaches to measuring and then reporting on the difference you make. She’ll also reveal the secrets of making this information work harder for you by unlocking its potential not just for accountability, but also for learning and service improvement.





Plenary: Charities Act Review

Stephen Lloyd, Senior Partner, Bates Wells & Braithwaite

The Charities Act 2006 required, in section.73, that the Minister for the Cabinet Office appointed a person to undertake a review of the Charities Act 2006.   Lord Hodgson, respected and with significant knowledge and a lengthy association with the sector was the ideal candidate to lead that review and pleasingly ensured that the terms of reference enabled the review to consider the wider issues. Lord Hodgson's review will report on the operation and effectiveness of the provisions of the 2006 Act and consider whether further changes could be made to improve the legal and regulatory framework for charities.  Stephen Lloyd was appointed by Lord Hodgson, with the consent of the Government to be his Special Legal Advisor in carrying out the review.  In this session, Stephen will outline the considerations and any initial findings of the review.


LUNCH & time to explore the exhibition





3A: Reserves & Risk

Kate Sayer, Partner, Sayer Vincent & Mel Avis, Finance Director, Henshaws Society for Blind People

As part of your financial planning, you need to make decisions about how much to spend and how much to save. You need to hold funds in reserves to manage unplanned contingencies and to cover known risks, but you also need to invest in your charity’s future and continue to have an impact by undertaking charitable activities.

3B: How Payments are changing

Sandra Quinn, Director of Communications & Helen Doyle, Principle Policy Advisor, Payments Council

New technology and new organisations offering financial services mean that the ways for a charity to make and receive payments is changing. This session will look at innovations such as mobile payments, charity giving through ATM machines and dual authorisation on online banking. It will also describe other developments the Payments Council is looking at, including ways for people and organisations to ask someone to make a payment on their behalf.




4A: Accounting Update 

Adrian Wild, Associate Director, Smith & Williamson

This session will give an overview of the Accounting Standards Board’s latest proposals for changes to UK GAAP (convergence to IFRS), the potential impact on charities and the latest on the Charities SORP review.

4B: TUPE - Public service delivery: Managing the risk

Martin Cheyne, Partner, Hempsons & Richard Pick, Chief Executive, The Wilf Ward Family Trust

This session will include updates on public service delivery; contracting; personalisation; pricing and payment by results.


TEA/COFFEE break & time to explore the exhibition




Closing Plenary: How does the sector offer leadership in harsh and challenging times?

Cathy Pharoah, Professor of Charity Funding & Co-Director, ESRC Centre for Charitable Giving and Philanthropy, Cass Business School (CGAP)

Senior management roles have never been so unrewarding.  The pressures to implement radical change and improve performance while delivering budget cuts and redundancies are growing. There is increasing donor pressure for evidence of outcomes and cost-effectivness.  Cathy Pharoah will pose the question 'how does the sector offer leadership in harsh and challenging times?'


Chair’s close of conference


Reception & networking



Venue Details


Park Plaza Leeds, Boar LaneCity Square, LEEDS, West Yorks, LS1 5NS

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Bookings & Prices



  • CFG Charity Member - £127.00;
  • CFG Charity Member Colleague - £139.00;
  • Non CFG Member Charity - £146.00;
  • CFG Corporate Subscriber - £206.00;
  • Other Corporate - £273.00;

Terms and Conditions:

Written notice of cancellations up to 21 days before an event will incur a 25% administration fee. After this time period, a 100% cancellation charge will apply. Substitutions (i.e. name changes) for the course booked can be made free of charge.

CFG reserves the right to cancel any event two weeks prior to the event date. You will be entitled to a full refund or given the opportunity to transfer to an alternative date. However we regret that we cannot refund any travel or accommodation costs incurred by delegates. CFG accepts no liability if an event is cancelled or postponed for reasons beyond our reasonable control resulting from an act of God, governmental regulation, fire, war, terrorist activity or civil commotion.

It may be necessary for reasons beyond our control to change the date, time or the venue at any time prior to the event date. If this occurs you will be informed of changes and given the opportunity to cancel or transfer to an alternative date.

CFG reserves the right to amend the content of the programme or the speakers where necessary without consulting booked delegates.

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