Bates Wells Briefing for Charities & Social Enterprises | 19 September

Bates Wells highlights

Charities, Social Enterprise

Victoria Horden, Bates Wells’ Head of Data Privacy has reviewed the government’s paper on how the collection and use of personal data would change if the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 with no deal. See here  for her comments.

At a glance

The Charity Commission has published a new piece of guidance about checking that setting up a new charity is the best option in the circumstances.

The International Development Committee has published its Report into the Definition and administration of Official Development Assistance.

DCMS has published a report on “Place-based giving schemes: funding, engaging and creating stronger communities”.

Charity Commission

New guidance

The Commission has published  a new piece of guidance about checking that setting up a new charity is the best option in the circumstances.


DCMS has published a report on “Place-based giving schemes: Funding, engaging and creating stronger communities”. ‘Place-based giving scheme’ is used to describe a multitude of schemes operating in defined geographical areas.


Last week the Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi spoke about the Department for Education’s guidance on sexual violence and sexual harassment between pupils. See here for the text of his speech.

The Daily Telegraph reports the NSPCC and Internet Watch Foundation are creating the world’s first web portal to enable children under 18 to submit any indecent sexual images of themselves to leading child abuse charities and have them removed from the web for ever. The portal is anonymous, so neither children’s parents, carers nor abusers would know, and the NSPCC’s Childline would take responsibility for any safeguarding or counselling the child might need. Although the technology and portal are in place, legal and ethical questions are still to be resolved to ensure the children are not criminalised if they have shared pictures or videos of themselves.

Data protection

The government has published a paper on how the collection and use of personal data would change if the UK leaves the EU in March 2019 with no deal. See here for comment on this from Victoria Horden, BWB’s Head of Data Privacy.

Also see under Health below.



NCVO has published its response to the recent society lotteries consultation. It has backed the government’s proposal to increase the annual limit on ticket sales from society lotteries to £100m.



See under Safeguarding above.

Last week International Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt joined Secretary of State for Education Damian Hinds and Love Actually director Richard Curtis to launch the Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning programme which is designed to build long-term partnerships between schools and communities in the UK and countries around the world. DfID and British Council’s new programme will increase awareness and understanding of global issues and different cultures by reaching 3 million pupils for a period of three years. It will also train 60,000 teachers and school leaders in the UK and developing countries to equip pupils with the knowledge and skills to live and work in a global economy.

Independent education sector

The Financial Times reports the National Crime Agency has put private schools on notice that they should check the legitimacy of the source of fees, and file more reports flagging suspicions about fees being paid with “dirty cash”. The article gives the example of James Ibori, former governor of Nigeria’s oil-rich Delta state who was convicted of money-laundering and fraud, who sent his three daughters to the £23,465-a-year Port Regis school in Dorset.


The Department of Health and Social Care has announced that it has introduced an initial code of conduct for data-driven health and care technology. The code is intended to introduce “a gold-standard set of principles” to protect patient data and encourage the use of technologies in the NHS to benefit patients. The DHSC is seeking comments and feedback on this initial code with the intention that these will feed into the next version intended to be published in December 2018.

Environment/access to information

Friends of the Earth has confirmed that it has filed a claim at the High Court, which challenges the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) published on 24 July 2018. Rather than quashing the new version of the NPPF, the environmental non-governmental organisation (NGO) is seeking a court order that a strategic environmental assessment (SEA) should have been undertaken and taken into account by the revised NPPF. Friends of the Earth is concerned that the revised NPPF:

  • Makes it virtually impossible for local planning authorities (LPAs) to refuse fracking applications because they are required to plan positively for shale gas extraction.
  • Fails to ban new coal power plants.
  • Makes it difficult to start wind power projects.

On 4 September, the Court of Justice (ECJ) allowed ClientEarth’s appeal against the November 2015 decision of the General Court (EU) and annulled the European Commission’s decisions not to disclose impact assessments relating to:

  • Its May 2014 decision not to introduce a Directive to implement requirements for access to environmental justice under the Aarhus Convention.
  • The revision of the EU legal framework on environmental inspections and surveillance at national and EU level.

The ECJ decided that:

  • ClientEarth had a continuing interest in bringing proceedings despite having already gained access to the various documents it had originally requested access to.
  • The General Court was wrong to hold that the Commission was entitled to make a general presumption that disclosure of documents drawn up in the context of preparing an impact assessment would seriously undermine its decision-making process for developing a policy proposal.

(ClientEarth v Commission Case C-57/16 P (4 September 2018).)

International development

The International Development Committee has published the Report into the Definition and administration of Official Development Assistance (ODA) and found that aid delivered under the Prosperity Fund is insufficiently focused on the poorest. The Government has committed to spending increasing amounts of ODA outside the Department for International Development (DFID) claiming that this will engage other departments’ skills, expertise and networks. This BOND article points out that, despite the IDC’s recommendations, the government has rejected crucial recommendations for any government department investing UK aid to be accountable to the Department for International Development (DFID).

Northern Ireland

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland’s Chief Executive, Frances McCandless, will be taking part in a webinar hosted by CO3 (Chief Officers 3rd Sector) on Thursday 20 September 2018, on the subject “Key Lessons for charities on annual reporting”.





This information is necessarily of a general nature and doesn’t constitute legal advice. This is not a substitute for formal legal advice, given in the context of full information under an engagement with Bates Wells.

All content on this page is correct as of September 19, 2018.