Sennen Churchtown Hall:

Conflict of Interest Policy

Policy Statement

Introduction
Sennen Churchtown Hall (SCTH) is a registered charity: number 1094500. Members
of the Committee of Management (the Committee) of the Trust have a duty to act
in the best interests of the Trust. Members, in general, should not benefit from the
Trust and should not be influenced by their wider interests when making decisions
affecting the Trust. The Constitution of the Trust contains provisions as to these
matters and, in the event of a conflict between this policy and the Constitution, the
latter shall prevail.
A ‘conflict of interest’ can be defined as: “… any situation in which a member of
the Committee’s personal interests or responsibilities they owe to another body
may, or may appear, to influence the member’s decision-making …”
Conflicts of interest may arise when the interests of members, or other “connected
persons” are incompatible or in competition with the interests of the Trust. Such
situations present a risk that members will make decisions based on these external
interests, rather than the best interests of the Trust.
Purpose
The purposes of this policy are to protect the integrity of the Trust’s decision-
making process, to enable our stakeholders to have confidence in our integrity, and
to protect the integrity and reputation of volunteers and committee members.
Reality
Conflicts of interest cannot be avoided altogether. Sennen is a comparatively
isolated community in the far south-west of England. Many families are interlinked
in a variety of different ways. The local workforce is small. This policy will assist in
managing potential conflicts of interest effectively, when they may arise. It will also
serve as a means of demonstrating good practice and governance under external
scrutiny and will support members in establishing that they have acted in the Trust’s
best interest.
The most common types of conflict that may arise include
• Direct financial interest – when a member obtains a direct financial benefit via
o The payment of a salary to the member by the Trust.
o
o The award of a contract to a company with which the member is involved.
The sale of property at below market value to a member.• Indirect financial interest – this arises when a close relative of a member could
benefit from the Trust:
o The awarding of an employment contract to a member’s spouse.
o Making a grant to a member’s dependent child.
• Non-financial or personal conflicts – occur when members receive no financial
benefit, but are influenced by external factors:
o Influencing Committee decisions on service provision to their own advantage
to gain some other intangible benefits or kudos.
o Awarding contracts to friends.
• Conflicts of loyalties – members may have competing loyalties between the Trust
to which they owe a primary duty and some other person or entity.
Responsibilities
The members have a responsibility to declare and avoid potential conflicts of
interest under the Charities Act 2011. Therefore, it is essential that all members
are fully aware of their duties and responsibilities and, when acting as a member,
they must act in the best interests of the Committee alone. The Secretary is
responsible for recording a register of interest related to an agenda item declared
during a Committee meeting.
When a potential conflict of interest is registered, the committee will seek to
ensure that any contracts of work are awarded by merit, suitability and costings
following the correct and proper tendering process. Decisions will be made by vote
which will exclude a person who has registered a conflict of interest.
Date Adopted: ______________________
Policy written by J Atkinson, Mar 19 Updated
Checked by
Agreed by the Committee on
Signed:
Date