ICAS Charities Committee

The ICAS Charities Committee is responsible for representing ICAS on matters impacting on the UK charity sector, in relation to:

  • public policy;
  • law and regulation;
  • financial reporting; and
  • external scrutiny, encompassing both independent examination and auditing

It also issues guidance on accountancy related matters to ICAS members who are involved with charities in a variety of roles including, as charity trustees, finance directors and advisers.

The Committee’s key policy positions are:

  • Support for the development and roll out of arrangements which support a preventative spend agenda to achieve better outcomes for communities over the longer term. 
  • Support for high quality accounting requirements for charities set out in the Charities SORP(s) which are fit for purpose for all charities preparing true and fair accounts and which clearly comply with the Financial Reporting Council’s requirements. 
  • Effective risk based monitoring by UK charity regulators to improve the overall quality of governance and stewardship of charitable assets across the UK charity sector.  
  • Support for changes to the legal framework to enable charities which participate in multi-employer defined benefit schemes to manage their pension liabilities effectively.  
  • The efficient administration of charity tax reliefs and donor reliefs by HMRC and a consistent and therefore equitable approach to VAT compliance.  This includes improvement in the VAT rules for charities to give shelter for certain charitable activities.

Committee Members

Adrienne Airlie (Convener)

Adrienne AirlieAdrienne is Chief Executive at Martin Aitken & Co Ltd.  She was appointed to her current role in 2010, in the firm which was grown substantially following a series of strategic mergers and acquisitions of accountancy practices and independent financial advisers. With a reputation for being able to explain the complexities of new accounting practices and standards succinctly to businesses and charities.  Adrienne advises a wide range of clients from start-ups to established family-run businesses and from mid-market limited companies to third sector organisations. She advises clients on the full range of accounting, statutory audit, tax and business performance issues, as well corporate governance and regulatory reporting.

Adrienne is board member of Mercy Corps Europe, she chairs its Audit & Risk Committee and is a member of the Joint Board Executive Committee of Mercy Corps Global.

Catherine Livingstone

Catherine  LivingstoneCatherine is a manager within Wylie & Bisset’s Business Services department and is responsible for the management of the firm’s independent examination services. Catherine was appointed to her current role in April 2016 and prior to this spent 11 years in Wylie & Bisset’s Corporate team specialising in providing audit services and business advice to larger charities.  Catherine regularly runs sessions providing financial training for charity trustees aimed at those with non-financial backgrounds.  Catherine is involved in staff training on charity accounting rules and is a member of the firm’s technical committee.   Outside work Catherine spends most of her free time with her two young sons, Andrew and Aaron

Colin Burnett

Colin Burnett Colin is the Group Finance Director of the Moredun Foundation group of companies, a mixed charitable and commercial group focusing on promoting animal health and welfare through research and education. The group owns and operates Pentlands Science Park, south of Edinburgh, and includes the internationally recognised Moredun Research Institute. Prior to joining Moredun in 2000, Colin was in practice having trained with Pannell Kerr Forster and was latterly a Director in a small spin-out practice.  Throughout his career Colin has served as a trustee of several charities.  He is a Past President of Midlothian and East Lothian Chamber of Commerce and is an Elder in the Church of Scotland.

Colin Kerr

Colin Kerr Colin Kerr joined the Commonwealth War Graves Commission as Finance Director in May 2011.  Having started his career with ten years in Deloittes, he has spent most of his career as a finance director, in both the commercial and public sectors, including ten years in the NHS.  Colin became Director of External Relations at the Commission in 2015.

Jamie Davidson

Jamie Davidson Jamie is an audit partner at Henderson Loggie. He trained with a Big 4 firm and after qualifying gained over twenty years of experience before joining Henderson Loggie in 2007.  He specialises in audit and accounting services for charity and not-for-profit entities and is currently head of the firm’s Charity Sector Group.

Jim Gibson

J Gibson

Jim is in practice as a consultant, and has a strong involvement with the charity sector.  He has been a member of the Charities Committee since 2013 and is a charity independent examiner.   He is Treasurer or Finance Committee member of 8 charities, some with overseas interests, working with youth, senior citizens, churches, education and the environment.  He has wide ranging practical experience in charity governance, accounting, stewardship and strategic management. Jim previously worked for 30 years as a general practice partner, latterly with Cook & Co in Glasgow, where his portfolio included a large number of charity clients. Away from the desk he enjoys hillwalking, languages and travel.

John McIntosh

J McIntosh Joining Kibble Education & Care in 2008, John has over 20 years of accountancy experience in industry and commerce.  He has worked for a variety of organisations including large family businesses, a multi-site retail organisation, and more recently a £1 billion turnover PLC.  John has responsibility for all Support Services at Kibble, including Finance, HR, and IT.

Kenneth Ferguson

Kenneth Ferguson Kenneth joined The Robertson Trust in 2011.  In his role as Director, Kenneth is responsible for overseeing the Trust’s work at both a strategic and operational level.  Prior to joining the Trust, Kenneth was the Director of Finance and Resources with the Aberlour Child Care Trust.  He is also Convener of the Scottish Grant Makers and on the Board of the Association of Charitable Foundations in London.

Sarah  Hollis

Sarah Hollis Sarah has over 15 years’ experience working in practice.  Sarah started in a medium sized local Edinburgh firm which then merged into one of the top 10 accountancy firms within the UK where she was a manager. Sarah now operates her own practice dealing with small and medium sized owner managed businesses in a variety of sectors as well as a specialism in the not for profit sector.  Throughout her career one of Sarah's specialisms/key interests has been the charitable sector. Sarah is kept busy at home by her twin daughters Sophie and Olivia who were born in 2013.

Tom Mitchell

To follow.

Victoria  Simpson

V Simpson Victoria is a senior associate solicitor at Anderson Strathern LLP.  She deals in private client and charity law/charity tax matters, and is accredited by the Law Society of Scotland as a specialist in charity law. She is recognised as being one of the leading lawyers in Scotland in the area of charity law.  Victoria is also tax and investment qualified. Victoria is a director and charity trustee of the Scottish SPCA, so understands first-hand the issues which affect the charity sector today. She is a co-author of “A Practical Guide to Scottish Charity Law” which is due to be published by Greens later this year.


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