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SHARP Public Statement

In the final week of the 2023 season, the newly elected committee began to suspect there were serious financial irregularities in the SHARP accounts and finances over several years. Since the season, together with the police, the new SHARP committee and trustees have been working hard to determine the nature and cause of these irregularities. This revealed a substantial amount of SHARP's money unaccounted for. The charity commission have been kept informed of the case throughout.

 

The Police have now charged a former SHARP trustee. For further full details see the police public statement linked here.

 

The SHARP Trustees and Committee would like to take this opportunity to apologise to the membership that this has occurred. SHARP's new committee and trustees, since taking over in 2023 had already started improving systems to make the finances more secure and transparent. Since this incident we have updated the financial policy and new procedures have now been put in place.

 

In light of these events, we started this year with little in the way of contingency funds and although we are hopeful that we will break even, we are still being hampered by increased hire costs. We do still have goals to get ourselves sustainable, by reducing yearly hire costs, but we think this may now take us much longer considering the situation and lack of funds. It is a project still being actively worked on by several trustees. We are however confident with the new committee and trustees taking the reins, and these new procedures in place, that SHARP will survive this incident and go forward into the future.

 

The SHARP Committee are looking forward to a successful 2024 season.

 

We would like to discourage any active discussion or speculation about this incident, particularly on any of our social media pages, until after the court case is complete. As such, public commenting will be removed from our official social media page for a time. Comments can be made on this post on our SHARP (Sedgeford 2024) Facebook group page, although for a while posts on this page will all be approved by admins (so there may be a delay in them appearing). We are not able to provide any more information at this time, so please don’t ask. Any comments that we feel are inappropriate will simply be deleted. Anyone that has serious concerns should email bookings@sharp.org.uk, and these will be answered when we are able to, but this may not be until after the court case. We will produce a report for the membership and be able to take questions on the case and/or investigation after the case has concluded.

 

On behalf of the SHARP Trustees and Committee

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