THE Chaigley Manor Trust charity set up to help Hyndburn children has been urged to spend more of its cash.
It has been revealed that the charity dear to the hearts of Hyndburn people has filed its accounts with the Charity Commission late for five years running. During this time it has underspent by £36,000.
The 2007 accounts were finally submitted two weeks ago along with those for 2006, which were 14 months late.
Now council leader Peter Britcliffe has asked the Trust to explain the situation amid fears the charity could be struck off.
Only the accrued interest on the £625,000 fund, built up from the proceeds from the sale of Chaigley Manor in the Ribble Valley, can be spent.
In 2007 that totalled £26,600, and yet only £11,700 was paid out – all of it spent on £10 fun days out for 1,165 children to venues such as Camelot and Whitehough education centre.
The charity, whose mission statement includes relieving "sickness, ailment and distress of children in need" is no longer accepting charitable donations and a £50,000 lottery-funded bus is not in operation.
Councillor Britcliffe said: "They just have this block of money that they spend the interest on and they’re not keeping up to speed with running it properly."
Former Trust chairman Derek Glover said: "In days past people supported this charity.
"There isn’t any reason at all why the interest generated should not be spent."
Trustee Steve Cook said a meeting would be held with Hyndburn Council to discuss the matter, but said they do not invite grant applications.
He explained that the underspend would be used to develop new projects in the new financial year and added the most recent accounts were filed late due to illness.