- The company that new charity Support The Heroes (registered charity number: 1155853) publicly thanked so effusively for its support isn’t registered at Companies House. This fact further undermines the credibility of the military charity.
- My last post described how Support The Heroes thanked on Twitter 9 April 2015 Soul Consulting, “a unique business development company”, for its support. The tweet from Support The Heroes embedded a misleading tweet from the company – misleading because it appeared to confuse Support The Heroes and Help for Heroes (registered charity number: 1120920), the high-profile military charity. In particular, the Soul Consulting tweet used the hashtag #helpforheroes. Publicly thanking the company for such a questionable tweet raises serious questions about the charity.
- But it’s worse than that. Soul Consulting isn’t registered at Companies House. There is a dissolved company of that name (company number: 07525882) – dissolved 18 September 2012, without filing any accounts.
- On 12 May 2015, I rang the landline phone number on the company’s website, soulconsulting.co.uk, to check. “Emma” answered – though I don’t know whether it was Emma Tickner, who is listed as “founder & director” of Soul Consulting. Perhaps it was one of the “managers” the company says will shortly be in touch if you complete the online contact form. Anyway, she asked whether I meant VAT number when I said I couldn’t see a company number on the Soul Consulting website. “No”, I said, “Where is the company number from Companies House?” “There isn’t one”, “Emma” replied, adding quickly: “We’re new, very new”. Oh.
- The charity is responsible for both its tweets and their contents. That Soul Consulting isn’t registered at Companies House further undermines the credibility of Support The Heroes.
- One concern about new charity Support The Heroes (registered charity number: 1155853) is the similarity of its name to Help for Heroes, the high-profile military charity. My reasonable suspicion is that the similarity is intentional, as I wrote in my 21 April 2015 post, not coincidental. Here I report a tweet from Support The Heroes that reinforces this suspicion.
- The charity’s official Twitter is @supportthheroes. On 9 April 2015, Support The Heroes tweeted: “Thank you very much for your support”, embedding a tweet from company Soul Consulting, @ticknersoul (screen shot in Figure 1).
- Soul Consulting is “a unique business development company”, according to its website, soulconsulting.co.uk.
- Soul Consulting’s tweet, dated 8 April 2015, records an apparent donation to Support The Heroes (screen shot in Figure 2). The charity is explicitly referred to via @supportthheroes. What the tweet says next raises serious questions about the new military charity: “…helping these heroes get the right support and help they need #helpforheroes”.
- Use of “helping” and “help” with “heroes” is highly likely to mislead the public. It resembles and therefore evokes Help for Heroes (registered charity number: 1120920). Yet the hashtag is even worse: it actually says Help for Heroes – #helpforheroes.
- Help for Heroes’ official Twitter is @helpforheroes.
- The misleading tweet is from Soul Consulting, “a unique business development company”. Not only did Support The Heroes publish it on its official Twitter page. But the charity explicitly endorsed the tweet it embedded: “Thank you very much for your support”. Support The Heroes is responsible for both its tweets and their contents.
- Please read my two posts on Support The Heroes, a new military charity (registered charity number: 1155853). First: https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/revealed-the-hidden-blackpool-company-presenting-itself-as-charity-support-the-heroes-to-recruit-paid-fundraisers/ (published: 21 April 2015). And then: https://dralexmay.wordpress.com/2015/04/29/call-dave-to-work-for-charity-support-the-heroes-more-evidence/ (published: 29 April 2015).
- On 5 May 2015, I received an email from the charity, signed by one of the trustees, Pauline White. Mrs White is listed as public contact for Support The Heroes on the Charity Commission website. Here is her email in full:
“Dr Alex May
We have received a copy of your blog posted on April 21, 2015 and quite frankly were amazed and upset with much of its content, especially the inaccuracies and innuendos.
Firstly:- our business relationship with Tony Chadwick stems from the fact that he is Managing Director of Targeted Management Limited (TML) which, as the name implies, is a management company and not a ‘professional fundraiser’ as you state. We are contracted with TML to perform certain functions which we decided to outsource (not having any paid employees – all of our five Trustees are unpaid). One of TML’s primary functions is the recruiting, supervision and training of self-employed sales personnel who are employed by Support The Heroes (Fundraising) Limited (a wholly owned subsidiary of Support The Heroes CIO). The foregoing should explain all of your points 2,3,4 and 5 and I refer you in particular to point 4 where I would bring to your attention that ‘Dave’ (whatever it says in his linked in profile) is employed by TML.
In points 1, 6 and 7 you mention at least 4 times that we do not mention working with a professional fundraiser. This is because we don’t (see paragraph 2).
As for your comment re the Twitter page not showing the full name (your point 10) this is due to the fact that only fifteen characters are allowed (we are surprised that you were not aware of this)
Our website, which is still in its early stages and is being provided free of charge did not display a landline telephone number and we thank you for bringing this to our attention. This is being remedied.
As mentioned above Support the Heroes (Fundraising) Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Support The Heroes CIO and not (as you mention in your point 12) Mrs White’s company. In fact the whole of your point 12 is absolute nonsense. Of course the Charity pre-dates its subsidiary – how else could it be? You appear to be misguided or at best naïve about charity company structures. Ours is as advised by the Charities Commission, our specialist charity solicitor and our accountants Moore & Smalley who are highly regarded within charity circles.
At point 14 you state ‘I don’t understand why the Charities Commission allowed the name’ I suggest you take this up with them directly.
Your final point 16 categorically states that ‘Tony Chadwick isn’t independent of the charity trustees. In short, it is reasonable to question the legitimacy of Support The Heroes’ this is untrue and clearly defamatory. We are taking immediate legal advice regarding this statement in particular.
We are amazed (one of your favourite words) that you either did not think of, or decided to ignore, contacting us directly before publishing, or checking the facts which are in the public domain. It appears to us that your objective is to become a latter day Ralph Nader but you seem to primarily cause mischief rather than seek out the truth. I am sure that there are many rogues out there purporting to be acting as legitimate and charitable ‘fundraisers’ and should you decide to spend your time and efforts sorting the wheat from the chaff then the result should be of value.
Should you cause our Charity ill-will or any financial loss due to, either our ability to obtain new sites for fundraising (or any site where we have prepaid being withdrawn) or loss of existing sales personnel or difficulty in recruiting then we will not hesitate to further instruct solicitors to seek redress and take any action deemed necessary to protect our reputation and position within the charity community.
In the meantime we will continue to go about our legitimate and worthwhile charitable activities.
On behalf of Support The Heroes CIO”