Captain Tom foundation investigated over consulting spend

17 February 2022 2 min. read
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Around a tenth of the donations raised by the Captain Tom Moore foundation have been spent more on consulting fees. According to an audit of the organisation, it also spent more money on administrative costs than it gave in charitable donations for the financial year ending May 2021.

Popularly known as Captain Tom, Captain Sir Thomas Moore more, was a British Army officer and fundraiser. He rose to prominence during the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic, when he raised money for charity for the embattled NHS.

Setting off in early April 2020, at the age of 99, Moore began to walk 100 lengths of his garden in aid of NHS Charities Together, with the goal of raising £1,000 by his 100th birthday. By that time, however, Moore had in fact raised more than £30 million.

Captain Tom foundation investigated over consulting spend

On the back of this huge success, in May 2020 Moore’s family set up the Captain Tom Moore foundation. Pledging to support four charities chosen by Captain Tom and his family –The Royal British Legion, Mind, Helen & Douglas House, and Willen Hospice – the foundation as continued to raise money beyond Moore’s passing in February 2021.

According to the year-end accounts of the foundation from May 2021, it received £1.4 million worth of donations – and used it to make four grants of £40,000 to each charity, totalling £160,000. However, another aspect of the accounts has raised more than a few eyebrows.

As reported throughout the British press, of the donations, more money was spent on running the foundation than was donated to the charities. Of the £400,000 used, £230,000 was spent on various administration and marketing costs, and a total £162,336 was used on management costs.

Meanwhile, more than £125,000, or around 10% of the money the foundation raised, was spent by the charity on ‘fundraising consultancy fees’ between May 2020 and May 2021.

The 2020-2021 audit of the Captain Tom Moore foundation has cast this last figure under the microscope in particular – as £54,039 was paid into Maytrix and Club Nook for assorted costs, including transport, website and third-party consultancy services. PR firm Maytrix and Club Nook are both co-run by Hannah Ingram-Moore – daughter of Captain Tom, and co-founder his foundation – though has since claimed Ingram-Moore “did not receive any consultancy fees in the time period stated, nor did any other family member.”

The UK’s Charity Commission recently announced it will investigate the accounts of the Captain Tom Foundation. As noted in the London Economic, the regulator said it had “ongoing contact” with foundation trustees about “set-up and governance arrangements”. Elsewhere, a further two complaints were made to the Information Commissioner’s Office over a breach in data protection regulations – although no further action was taken.