Leading charities announce merger


Cost saving move announced 

8th November 2019 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Two leading health charities are to merge.

Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation have announced their intention to merge.

Up to £2m a year will be saved by the two charities coming together with back office and running costs being shared.

An estimated 20 jobs could be at risk from the move, although a spokesperson said every effort had been made to minimise job losses.

Despite the organisations merging both will keep their own brands for the foreseeable future.

Asthma UK closed its Scottish office in 2015, centralising operations in London, in a bid to save cash while BLF has an office in Glasgow.   

BLF had an income of £9.6m while BLF generated £7.8m last year.    

No decisions have been taken about who would be the chair or chief executive of the merged charity, the spokeswoman said, although the charity’s new board would have equal numbers of trustees from both of its predecessors.

An emergency general meeting will be held by Asthma UK on 2 December to approve the merger. The spokeswoman said that, if accepted, the merger would be expected to go through before the end of the year.

Kay Boycott, chief executive of Asthma UK, said: "The merger would be an exciting new chapter in the history of Asthma UK.

"Together, as a partnership of equals, we would share our combined energy and passion and become a stronger, more powerful voice for change.

"Supporters and other beneficiaries of our work would not see any major change in their day-to-day links with us. We would keep our focus on and maintain the profile of asthma within the merged charity because we know this is important to our supporters."

Penny Woods, chief executive of the BLF, said: "Our proposed partnership builds on the successful collaboration between Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation over the past few years.

"As we develop our joint vision and strategy, we will continue to explore opportunities for closer working, doing so where we believe we will have more impact together. We are confident this proposal would bring lasting benefits for those affected by asthma and other lung diseases."