Call Dave to work for charity Support The Heroes: more evidence

  1. In my last post I revealed the full name of Dave and the hidden Blackpool company he works for, which, in the guise of the charity Support The Heroes, is currently recruiting paid fundraisers. On 22 April 2015, the day after that post, Dave removed from his two job ads on the Indeed jobs website the mobile phone number I used to identify him. He is now using the number 07951725657 in his ads there. Dave also deleted the identifying mobile phone number from his LinkedIn profile (as Dave Ellison). Yet it is important to remember that the three screen shots in my last post are all visibly dated – at 15 April 2015.
  2. Here I provide two further pieces of evidence confirming Dave’s original mobile phone number in the guise of Support The Heroes – 07547320277 – as shown in those three screen shots.
  3. First, Dave as Support The Heroes uses that phone number in a job ad for a “Charity Fundraiser” on the Blackpool Jobs page on Facebook (screen shot in Figure 1). There the text of the ad is the same as that in the Indeed ad shown in Figure 1 (“Charity Fundraiser”) of my last post.

    Figure 1. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 22 April 2015

    Figure 1. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 22 April 2015

  4. Second, Dave on 07547320277 appears as contact in a job ad for a “street seller” of charity merchandise that was posted on the government’s Universal Jobmatch website 17 April 2015 (screen shot in Figure 2). But now Dave doesn’t disclose the charity’s name: the company is shown as “confidential”. The secrecy invites suspicion. The text of the ad is the same as that in the Indeed ad shown in Figure 2 (“Charity Wristband Fundraiser”) of my last post, except for one difference. Dave’s ad on Universal Jobmatch omits the sentence: “Uncapped commission paid daily, working directly for the charity.”

    Figure 2. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 22 April 2015

    Figure 2. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 22 April 2015

Revealed: the hidden Blackpool company presenting itself as charity Support The Heroes to recruit paid fundraisers

  1. A Blackpool company owned by the same people as Prize Promotions Limited, the discredited professional fundraiser now in administration, is presenting itself as a military charity to recruit paid fundraisers. From the same address as Prize Promotions Limited, Local VIP Ltd is presenting itself as charity Support The Heroes on an independent jobs website. Support The Heroes is a newly registered charity, officially based in Kirkham, a small Lancashire town midway between Blackpool and Preston. Amazingly, the charity doesn’t disclose a landline phone number on its website or the Charity Commission public register, only a mobile. The charity website, which is vague and unconvincing, says nothing about working with a professional fundraiser. Tony Chadwick, director of Prize Promotions Limited and Local VIP, has long-standing business relationships with two of the five trustees of the charity. The three of them helped run a life insurance firm in Blackpool, for example, which is now dissolved. Also, these two trustees and another one are currently running various companies with Bernard Chadwick, presumably a relation of Tony Chadwick. (Bernard Chadwick was a director of the life insurance company as well.) The registered address for many of these businesses is the same Kirkham one used for Support The Heroes.
  2. Support The Heroes (registered charity number: 1155853) is currently advertising two roles on Indeed, an independent jobs website: http://www.indeed.co.uk. Well, that’s how it appears: Support The Heroes directly posted the ads there and is shown as the recruiting company. The two roles are: “Charity Fundraiser” (screen shot in Figure 1) and “Charity Wristband Fundraiser” (screen shot in Figure 2).
    Figure 1. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 15 April 2015

    Figure 1. Charity Fundraiser job ad at 15 April 2015

    Figure 2. Charity Wristband Fundraiser job ad at 15 April 2015

    Figure 2. Charity Wristband Fundraiser job ad at 15 April 2015

  3. But both ads list the charity’s location as Blackpool FY3, not Kirkham. Prior to going into administration, Blackpool FY3 was the trading address for Prize Promotions Limited, the discredited professional fundraiser. Its full trading address was: 22 Whitegate Drive, Blackpool, FY3 9AQ. Local VIP is also there. Tony Chadwick is director of Prize Promotions Limited (Company number: 07829587). Luke Varley used to be a director of the company, too, until resigning 4 April 2014. Both Mr Chadwick and Mr Varley are also directors of Local VIP Ltd (Company number: 07203970). This company sells the “Local VIP Card”, a discount card: http://www.localvipcard.co.uk.
  4. Applicants for both roles are invited to upload their CVs or call Dave on 07547320277. So no full name, no landline and no full address. Yet searching online for Dave with this number reveals that it’s Dave Ellison, it seems, who is “‎National Venues Manager” at Local VIP, Blackpool, according to his LinkedIn profile (screen shot in Figure 3).

    Figure 3. Dave Ellison LinkedIn profile at 15 April 2015

    Figure 3. Dave Ellison LinkedIn profile at 15 April 2015

  5. As I said, the charity Support The Heroes is shown as the recruiting company in both ads. Indeed, that for “Charity Wristband Fundraiser” (Figure 2) unambiguously says that the “street sellers” will be “working directly for the charity”. Yet it is clear that Local VIP in Blackpool is presenting itself as Support The Heroes.
  6. Support The Heroes is a newly registered military charity, supposedly based in Kirkham, a small Lancashire town midway between Blackpool and Preston: http://www.supporttheheroes.org.uk/contact.php. Amazingly, the charity doesn’t disclose a landline phone number on its website or the Charity Commission public register, only a mobile. The Charity Commission explicitly warns the public not to donate to charitable collections where fundraising materials only bear a mobile number – see the fourth of nine checks the commission recommends in the London-wide safer giving campaign: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/commission-backs-london-wide-safer-giving-campaign. Here it’s even worse: the charity itself only uses a mobile number.
  7. The charity website, which is vague and unconvincing, says nothing about working with a professional fundraiser. So the charity says it conducted its first “skill prize draw” 11 February 2015, but there is no mention of a professional fundraiser on the web page at 18 April 2015: http://web.archive.org/web/20150418135108/http://www.supporttheheroes.org.uk/skillprizedraw.php.
  8. There is just one email address on the website: admin@supporttheheroes.org.uk. And no names anywhere, not even on the “About Us” page.
  9. The “Donations” page invites suspicion by not publishing bank account details. Rather, potential donors are asked to call the mobile number for these. Here is the page at 18 April 2015: https://web.archive.org/web/20150418132140/http://www.supporttheheroes.org.uk/donations.php. Also suspicious is that a “Direct Debit form will be available to download soon”. Perhaps it will. Similarly, if you want to buy anything other than a wristband – £3 each – the charity’s online shop will disappoint. “More great items are on the way so check back soon”, it says at 18 April 2015: http://web.archive.org/web/20150418134139/http://www.supporttheheroes.org.uk/store.php.
  10. The website lists the official Twitter page: https://twitter.com/supportthheroes. That’s right, it’s @supportthheroes [sic]. The charity currently has only six followers there. It is unclear why Support The Heroes hasn’t used its correct name on Twitter when @supporttheheroes seems to be available.
  11. Tony Chadwick, director of Prize Promotions Limited and Local VIP, has long-standing business relationships with two of the five trustees of the charity, Pauline White and Pamela Carruthers. Mrs White is listed as public contact for the charity on the Charity Commission website. Mrs Carruthers is registered owner of the charity’s domain name, supporttheheroes.org.uk (source: WHOIS records).The three of them helped run a life insurance firm in Blackpool, for example, which is now dissolved – Financial and Professional Services Limited (Company number: 00651908). Also, these two trustees and another one, Nicola Swarbrick, are currently running various companies with Bernard Chadwick, presumably a relation of Tony Chadwick. (Bernard Chadwick was a director of the life insurance company as well.) The registered address for many of these businesses is the same Kirkham one used for Support The Heroes.
  12. Charity trustee Mrs White is the director of a new company with a name that raises serious questions about Support The Heroes. This firm is Support The Heroes (Fundraising) Limited (Company number: 09284788) and its registered address and trading address are the same familiar Kirkham one. The charity name is clearly similar to that of Mrs White’s company. Yet the charity is a charitable incorporated organisation (CIO) and as such can’t have the same name as a registered company, says the Charity Commission. It states: “Check Companies House to make sure that there are no companies with a similar name to your CIO.” (https://www.gov.uk/how-to-choose-a-charity-name) The charity predates the firm: Support The Heroes was registered at the commission 19 February 2014, while Support The Heroes (Fundraising) Limited was incorporated 28 October 2014.
  13. Prize Promotions Limited, the discredited professional fundraiser, is in administration, as I reported in January. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/01/27/prize-promotions-limited-in-administration/) This blog has exclusively revealed how Prize Promotions Limited has consistently misled the public across the UK in its rip-off fundraising activities, often working illegally. Support The Heroes is the third “heroes” military charity linked to Tony Chadwick and his companies. So Prize Promotions Limited was official professional fundraiser for first Afghan Heroes and then Our Local Heroes Foundation. I first wrote about Prize Promotions Limited and its role with Afghan Heroes January 2014, just after the Charity Commission announced December 2013 that it had opened a statutory inquiry into Afghan Heroes. That inquiry continues. On 9 November 2014, I appeared as a live studio guest on 5 live Investigates, the BBC Radio 5 live programme. There we exposed Prize Promotions Limited and its work for the two military charities. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/our-local-heroes-foundation-to-stop-working-with-prize-promotions-limited-on-bbc-radio-5-live/) Our Local Heroes Foundation had told BBC Radio 5 live then that it would stop working with Prize Promotions Limited – only to still be working together in December last year. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2014/12/26/man-conned-into-buying-a-prize-draw-ticket-in-the-name-of-our-local-heroes-foundation-video/) In the latest twist, Our Local Heroes Foundation switched to a seemingly new official professional fundraiser, Targeted Management Limited (company number: 09036445). But Targeted Management Limited is just another new company owned by Tony Chadwick, as I revealed in February. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/02/26/from-prize-promotions-limited-to-targeted-management-limited/)
  14. The charity name itself is questionable. It is too similar to Help for Heroes (registered charity number: 1120920), the high-profile military charity. I don’t understand why the Charity Commission allowed the name given the similarity. What makes it worse, Help for Heroes is so well-known and its cause so popular that most reported frauds relating to military charities derive from “charities” with names similar to Help for Heroes, says the police. (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/charity-fraudsters-use-help-for-heroes-popularityto-help-themselves-9242465.html) [This report appeared in the print Independent 7 April 2014 as “Charity fraudsters use Heroes’ popularity to help themselves”.] So the similarity of the charity name to Help for Heroes isn’t just likely to mislead the public. It is reasonable to be suspicious of any “heroes” military charity because of the documented fraud risk. Support The Heroes therefore needs to be scrutinised. Why exactly is it using this name?
  15. More generally, any new military charity deserves scrutiny. In May 2014, General Sir Mike Jackson, the then new president of ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, said there are too many military charities in an interview for The Independent. The outgoing chief executive of the Charity Commission, Sam Younger, agreed a month later in the same newspaper. The large number of legitimate charities in the sector is confusing for the public and those who serve. Yet as I said in a letter again in The Independent September 2014, this isn’t only about duplication and inefficiencies. This over-supply and the fact that military charities have become one of the most popular causes – consider Help for Heroes – also mean fraudsters are active in this charity sector. So a new military charity adds to the potential confusion, making it easier for bogus charities to flourish. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2014/10/03/letter-in-the-independent-on-fraud-in-the-charity-sector-and-the-number-of-military-charities/) For any new military charity, we need to ask: is it really necessary?
  16. The name Support The Heroes is bad enough. But this is the third “heroes” military charity linked to Tony Chadwick and his companies. This blog has exclusively revealed how Prize Promotions Limited – now in administration – has consistently misled the public across the UK in its rip-off fundraising activities, often working illegally. Here I have exposed another act of bad faith: one of his companies is presenting itself as charity Support The Heroes to recruit paid fundraisers. The newly registered charity only uses a mobile phone number for its business, not disclosing a landline. While the charity website looks dodgy – it is vague and unconvincing. Finally, Tony Chadwick isn’t independent of the charity trustees. In short, it is reasonable to question the legitimacy of Support The Heroes.

Six reasons why Precious Kids Children’s Trust is a dubious charity

  1. Precious Kids Children’s Trust (registered charity number: 1147281) is a children’s charity, as the name suggests. It works by making grants to individuals and organisations. But the charity is hugely inefficient, according to its latest accounts on the Charity Commission website. In 2013, it spent 0.3 per cent of its £80 248 income on donations out of the charity – that’s just £250 to the “ill, disabled or underprivileged” children in whose name the money is raised. Shameful.
  2. The charity simultaneously specifies three addresses for its website, but without explanation. So preciouskidsct.org.uk is listed on the Charity Commission public register. Yet those 2013 accounts, which were 147 days late at the commission in February 2015, state that www.preciouskidsct.uk is the address. Finally, Precious Kids Children’s Trust is also publicly using www.preciouskids.org.uk for its website – see this November 2014 report in local newspaper The Northern Echo, for example: http://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/local/darlington/11622746.Care_home_residents_spend_the_day_in_their_pyjamas_to_raise_funds_for_disabled_child/. Most serious is the fact that the domain name in the accounts, preciouskidsct.uk, isn’t even registered, let alone a website. This isn’t a minor point: the accounts explicitly refer the reader to non-existent website www.preciouskidsct.uk for the charity’s “achievements and performance” during the year. The accounts disclose nothing on achievements. Similarly, the charity’s “activities” section on the Charity Commission public register states: “see our website www.preciouskidsct.uk”. (The “activities” section is the trustees’ description in their own words of what they do and who they help.) A credible charity would ensure that the website address in its accounts was accurate, especially when that official document explicitly refers the reader to the website for important information. A credible charity would put that information in the accounts anyway.
  3. Precious Kids Children’s Trust is linked to Everyone’s Children’s Trust (registered charity number: 1127302), one of a group of related dubious children’s charities I exposed March 2015 in a four-part investigation into questionable charity collections at Asda stores. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/03/11/why-is-asda-failing-customers-on-charity-collections-part-one/) Two of the three trustees of Precious Kids Children’s Trust, Mr John Potter and Mrs Amanda Jane Potter (husband and wife?), were previously directors of Everyone’s Children’s Trust, the now dissolved company (company number: 06413095). This fact again undermines the credibility of the 2013 accounts where Precious Kids Children’s Trust says it’s “not associated or connected to any other organisation or parties”.
  4. Here’s another link to Everyone’s Children’s Trust: the “northern office” for Precious Kids Children’s Trust had an Everyone’s Children’s Trust email address – wayne@everyones.org.uk – at 28 June 2013. (http://web.archive.org/web/20130628040800/http://www.preciouskidsct.org.uk/contact.html) No related parties, really?
  5. Tony Stirk is registered owner of both domain names, preciouskidsct.org.uk and preciouskids.org.uk (source: WHOIS records). He’s the registrant for everyones.org.uk, as well as the domain names of further linked dubious children’s charities. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/03/11/why-is-asda-failing-customers-on-charity-collections-part-one/)
  6. Precious Kids Children’s Trust is linked to the shadowy CRSA Ltd in Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex. CRSA Ltd established Everyone’s Children’s Trust, the company, with previous name CRSA Stock 7. It also set up further linked dubious children’s charities. (https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/03/11/why-is-asda-failing-customers-on-charity-collections-part-one/) CRSA Ltd prepares accounts for Precious Kids Children’s Trust.