A so-called “Penarth Town Trust” – an idea which twice failed to take-off when originally floated out last year – has now been registered with the Charities Commission.
The venture may well be linked with similar proposals in a report discussed last month by Penarth Town Council – but which did not refer to the “Penarth Town Trust” by name [see PDN report https://penarthnews.wordpress.com/2017/07/31/penarth-council-considers-setting-up-its-own-town-charity/%5D .
The Penarth Town Trust has now been formally registered as what’s called a Foundation CIO or “Charitable Incorporated Organisation” . This is a type of CIO in which the trustees alone – ( in this case just three people) – would make all the decisions.
Behind the putative new charity – and its first trustees are are:-
- Former Labour town councillor and former deputy mayor of Penarth Tracey Alexander (who attempted top set up the Penarth Town Trust in 2015) ,
- Charles Patrick Race Williams
- William John Hudson.
The Trust has told the Charities Commission that its aims are :-
- The advancement of education for the public benefit of Penarth through the operation of what’s described as a “Public Training and Community Education Resource Centre”. [One PDN source says this is a coded reference to a potential acquisition of the Turner House Art Gallery – which is currently in the possession of the National Museum of Wales. The potential acquisition of Turner House from the National Museum was referred to in last week’s internal council report
2 “The advancement of education for the public benefit into the history and heritage of Penarth and the surrounding area” (sic). [ A PDN source believes this could be – in effect – a scheme to take-over the Penarth Civic Society – or that society’s aims and objectives. The Penarth Civic Society stated firmly last year that it had “no plans to participate in the Penarth Town Trust”. ]
3 “The preservation and protection of good health in Penarth by the education of the public in skills, techniques and approaches to maintaining natural health through diet and exercise”.
4 The organisation would also promote local sports which are adjudged to be “capable of improving physical health and fitness”.
5 The Penarth Town Trust would also operate a “database of the Voluntary Sector” in Penarth
The people whose interests the new Penarth Town Trust has said it intends to serve are listed as :-
- “Children /young people”
- “Elderly/old people” [ It’s not quite clear what the distinction is between the two]
- “People of particular ethic or racial origin” – [the particular ethnicities are not specified]
- “The general public/Mankind”
The Trust has told the Charities Commission that the Penarth Town Trust would: –
- Make grants to individuals
- Make grants to organisations
- Provide what is described as “other finance”
- Provide buildings, facilities and open space [ One source says this could be a means of hiving off the Town Council’s major assets – the Paget Rooms, the Kymin, the allotments and the Cemetery]
- Provide “services” [not specified]
- Provide “advocacy, advice, information”
- Sponsor or undertake “research”
- Act as an “umbrella or resource body”
The first two attempts to set up a “Penarth Town Trust” ( in April and in September last year) were both piloted by Tracey Alexander and both fizzled out .
The second attempt to launch the much-heralded body in 2016 collapsed when the organisation’s then lack of any formal status came to light. [ See PDN https://penarthnews.wordpress.com/2016/09/02/the-penarth-town-trust-fizzles-out-on-the-lunch-pad/%5D
The one piece of information missing from the Charities Commission entry on this 3rd attempt to initiate the Penarth Town Trust is any clue as to just where the Trust proposes to get all the money from to achieve its ambitious objectives.