British Dressage is now a recognised charity in Britain, with its approval coming through on Wednesday from the Charity Commission.
The application for charity status followed member consultation, a feasibility study by lawyers Wright Hassall and subsequent approval to make changes to BD’s Memorandum and Articles of Association.
“It’s fantastic news for British Dressage,” said BD Chief Executive Amanda Bond. “For some time now, we believed that the activities and purpose of British Dressage were closely aligned to what define a charity. By having charitable status we are best able to make the most of our resources and offer the best service for our members. It is certainly a new era for our sport.”
For members and stakeholders of BD, there will be little change on the surface but for the company there are numerous advantages. Tax benefits, additional income from gift aid on membership, donations and access to charitable funding will all help the organisation to plough increased funds back into the sport and make improvements.
BD has established a sister company, British Dressage Trading Limited, to handle the commercial activity of the business alongside the current company, now with the registered charity number 1155352. All profit from the trading company will be gifted back to BD to help fund the sport. As part of the change, the current board directors of BD have now become charity trustees. Penny Pollard, the Chair of BD will also be the Chair of British Dressage Trading Limited.