Trustees' annual report

The first paragraph of the Charity SORP makes it clear that "The primary purpose of the trustees' annual report is to ensure that the charity is publicly accountable to its stakeholders for the stewardship and management of the funds it holds on trust" The report therefore should "provide a fair, balanced and understandable review of the charity's structure, legal purposes, objectives, financial performance and financial position". The reader should be able to form a view of what the charity has done (output), its achievements (outcomes) and its impact with respect to its charitable purposes.

The level of detail and disclosures to be included is determined by the size of charity.

Accounting report framework for 2019-20
Small Charity Large Charity
Income up to £250k Income up to £500k Income over £500k
Non-Company Charity Charitable Company All Charities All Charities
Receipts and Payments (Option) Income and Expenditure Income and Expenditure Income and Expenditure
Trustees' report framework for 2019-20 as set out in the 2015 SORP
Small Charity Large Charity
Reference Details SORP paras. 1.27-1.28 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.52-1.53
Name of Charity as over
Other name charity is known by as over
Registered Charity Number as over
Charity Regulator as over
Charity's principal address as over
Administration Details SORP paras. 1.27-1.28 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.52-1.53
Names of Trustees at date of report; Also indicating offices held and body or person entitled to appoint (if any) as over
Names of Trustees who acted during the period; Also indicating offices held and body or person entitled to appoint (if any) as over
Corporate Trustees (if any); the names of directors at the date of the report as over
Custodian or Nominee trustees; both at the date of the report or who acted during the period as over
  Details of the delegated day-to-day management; Including names of chief executive and senior staff at the date of the report and who acted during the period
  Names and addresses of other relevant organisations such as auditors, bankers or solicitors
Structure, governance and management SORP paras. 1.25-1.26 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.51
Describe the type of governing document; could include trust deed, memorandum and articles of association, charity commission scheme, Royal Charter or for Anglican churches the PCC Powers Measure as over
Describe how the charity is constituted; such as limited company, unincorporated association, trustees incorporated as a body, charitable incorporated organisation (CIO), community benefit society or friendly society etc. as over
Details of methods used to recruit and appoint new charity trustees; this could include procedures to ensure there is an appropriate mix of skills, ethnicity and gender. as over
  Describe the charity's organisation structure and where relevant, those of subsidiaries. How key decisions are made and where they are made, by trustees or delegated. Details of sub-committees where relevant
  Describe the charity's organisation structure and where relevant, those of subsidiaries. How key decisions are made and where they are made; by trustees or delegated. Details of sub-committees where relevant
  Details of policies and procedures for the induction and training of trustees. Demonstrate how the charity provides its trustees with appropriate help and guidance to fulfil their role
  What are the arrangements including criteria or benchmarks, for setting remuneration for the key management personnel. Details of any remuneration sub-committee and its constitution.
  Describe relationships with related parties including all key partnerships and any trading subsidiaries
  Details of wider networks including membership of or affiliation with any umbrella bodies
Objectives and activities SORP paras. 1.17-1.19 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.35-1.39
Summarise the purposes of the charity as set out in its governing document as over
Summarise the main activities in relation to those purposes for the public benefit, in particular the activities, projects or services identified in the financial statements as over
  • Provide details of the issues the charity seeks to tackle and the changes or differences it seeks to make
  • Describe how th achievement of its aims will further its legal purposes
  • Outline the strategies for achieving its stated aims and objectives
  • Provide the criteria or measures it uses to assess success in the reporting period
  • Describe the significant activities undertaken explaining how they contribute to the achievement of aims and objectives and the scale and resources consumed
  • Detailed background into how short-term aims and objectives fulfilled in the reporting period fit into the longer-term
  • Explain the use, if any, of social investment, grant making and volunteers
  • In the case of volunteers, detail the activities volunteers are involved in and the contribution in terms of hours or staff equivalent
Achievements and performance SORP paras. 1.20 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.40-1.45
Summarise the main achievements of the charity both in a qualitative and quantitative way, identifying the difference the charity's work has made to its beneficiaries and if relevant to wider society as over
  Set out how well the activities undertaken by the charity and subsidiaries performed and met the aims and objectives for the reporting period. Provide a balanced view of successes and failures as well as supporting evidence. In particular
  • the significant charitable activities undertaken
  • the achievements against objectives set
  • the performance of material fundraising activities also against objectives
  • Where relevant, investment performance against objectives
  • if material expenditure was incurred to raise income in the future, explain the effect this expenditure has had and is intended to have on the net return from fundraising activities both in the reporting period and future periods
Financial Review SORP paras. 1.21-1.24 (Smaller Charities only) and 1.46-1.48
review the charity's financial position at the end of the reporting period as over
importantly it must explain any policy it has for reserves, stating the amount and why they are held also include
  • the amount of the total funds the charity holds and the end of the reporting period
  • Identify the amounts that are restricted and generally not available
  • explain any material designated amounts and the likely timing of expenditure or commitment
  • Compare the amount of the reserves against the policy and explain any variances and plans to correct if relevant
If, at the date of approving the report and accounts, there are uncertainties about the ability of the charity to continue as a going concern these must be explained as over
identify and give details of any fund or subsidiary that is materially in deficit, explaining the circumstances and actions being taken to eliminate the deficit as over
  comment on significant events that have effected the financial performance and position of the charity during the reporting period, in particular
  • the financial effects of significant events
  • where the charity hold material financial investments, the investment policy and objectives
  • describe the principal risks and uncertainties facing the charity as determined by the trustees; summarise the risk management plans.
  • outline any factors that are likely to impact future financial performance
  • describe the principal funding sources in the reporting period and how they support the key objectives
  • show the impact, if any, of a material pension liability from any schemes in place
  • where material investments are held, explain the extent, if any< to which it takes social, environmental or ethical considerations into account in its investment policy
Plans for future period SORP paras. 1.49-1.50
  provide a summary of the charity's plans for the future, including its aims and objectives and details of any activities planned to achieve them
  explain the trustees' view of the future direction of the charity, detailing how experience and lessons learned have influenced future plans and decisions about allocating resources to the best effect