Captain Tom Moore: Charity paid daughter £70,000 as donations fell
The Charity Commission launched the inquiry in June 2022, as it was concerned about the charity’s management and its links to a company called Club Nook Limited, which is run by the well-known fundraiser’s daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore and her husband Colin.
The charity, which claims to “promote causes that were close to Sir Captain Tom Moore’s heart”, stopped accepting donations in July and said it was focused on cooperating with the investigation.
According to the charity’s latest accounts, it recorded an income of almost £403,000 in the nine months to April 2022 – less than half the amount (£1m) it collected in 2020/21.
The accounts stated that the Charity Commission’s statutory inquiry had “a massive adverse impact on the charity, our ability to raise new funds and to deliver operational activities”.
Chair Stephen Jones wrote: "Once the findings of the statutory inquiry have been communicated, The Captain Tom Foundation will be in a better position to make a decision in relation to its future.
“But for now our main priority is to assist the Charity Commission with its inquiry.
“At this time it is difficult to say when matters may be completed, but we will provide an update when we can.”
The accounts show Ms Ingram-Moore, who was the interim chief executive until April 2022, was paid a salary of £63,750 and she claimed £7,602 on expenses.
Payments of just over £24,000 were also made for office rental and telephone costs to Maytrix Group Limited, a company controlled by Ms Ingram-Moore and her husband Colin.
No payments were made to Club Nook Ltd over the nine-month period, but it did receive £16,097 in 2020/21.
When it launched the investigation, the Charity Commission said it was concerned Club Nook Ltd was given “the opportunity to trade mark variations of the name ‘Captain Tom’ without objection from the charity” and “this may have generated significant profit for the company”.
The regulator also revealed it had refused when the charity asked for permission to pay Ms Ingram-Moore a salary of £100,000 a year, as it was “neither reasonable nor justifiable”. But it did later sign off on a salary of £85,000.
In a statement, Ms Ingram-Moore said she was appointed to the role by the independent trustees who set up the charity and she has had "no involvement with the foundation in any capacity" since she stepped down.
A Charity Commission spokesperson said: “The Commission does not take any decision to open an inquiry lightly but as regulator, it is our role to investigate concerns, ensuring charity can thrive and inspire public trust, and the public can continue to give to charities with confidence.
“Our ongoing statutory inquiry into the Captain Tom Foundation is investigating concerns about the charity’s financial management and governance, to establish whether there has been unauthorised benefit to current or previous trustees, whether conflicts of interest have been identified and managed, and whether the trustees more generally have complied with their legal duties and responsibilities.
"We will publish the findings of the inquiry once it has concluded.”
It comes as Ms Ingram-Moore and her husband are due to appear at a planning inquiry next month, after they lodged an appeal when Central Bedfordshire Council ordered them to demolish a spa complex in their garden.
They were granted planning permission to build a ‘Captain Tom Building’ next to their Grade II listed seven-bedroom home in the village of Marston Moretaine, after claiming the building would be a home office used by people working for the foundation.
But planning officers stated “it is clear from the floor plans, that the intended use of the building is an ancillary outbuilding including spa pool” and when they visited the site “the windows were covered, and access to the inside of the building was not possible”.
Captain Tom became a hero during the first Covid lockdown in 2020 after raising £38.9m for the NHS by walking around his garden. The ex-Army officer from Keighley was knighted for his efforts prior to his death in 2021, aged 100.