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Meet our team / Phil Watts

Phil Watts

Senior associate

Senior associate in the governance, funding and corporate team

My role

I advise charity and education clients on a wide range of governance and commercial matters.

My experience

I have over 25 years’ experience advising charity clients of all shapes and sizes on matters such as establishment, governance, funding, reorganisation, group structures, mergers, acquisitions, trading and dealing with the Charity Commission. In the last fifteen years, I have also specialised in governance arrangements for trust schools and academies and have been involved in establishing and providing ongoing advice to well over 250 academies and multi-academy trusts.

My specialisms

  • Charity law and governance
  • Academies – establishment and governance

Blog


My latest articles

Academy Trust Handbook 2022
Academy Trust Handbook 2022

It will be no surprise that the changes in this year’s edition of the Academy Trust Handbook are minimal and far fewer than has been the case in recent years.

Charities monthly round-up May 2022
Charities monthly round-up May 2022

In this month’s newsletter, we are considering some new funding available for charities and some recent changes made to rules around Gift Aid and the investment portfolios of charities.

Education White Paper – Sea change or soundbite?
Education White Paper – Sea change or soundbite?

Phil Watts discusses the Government White Paper on education to explore the question, to what extent could the proposals lead to a sea change in our education system.

Changes to the Academies Financial Handbook – 2021
Changes to the Academies Financial Handbook – 2021

In June 2021 the Education and Skills Funding Agency ESFA issued its annual update to their Academies Financial Handbook. The purpose of this briefing is to summarise the changes and any particular ac

Change of rules for membership of academy trusts
Change of rules for membership of academy trusts

The Academies Financial Handbook is updated annually by the Department for Education and the Education and Skills Funding Agency; it contains a number of governance requirements for academy trusts.

Charities fortnightly round-up 28
Charities fortnightly round-up 28

Happy New Year - our first newsletter of 2021! Throughout this year we will continue to bring you news and developments relating to the charities sector.

Charities fortnightly round-up 20
Charities fortnightly round-up 20

A recent increase in COVID-19 cases in the UK means new measures are being put in place in an effort to reduce the risk of a second wave. Whilst the impact of COVID-19 continues to be felt, it is important to remain focused on the sector’s road to recovery.

Charities weekly round-up 13
Charities weekly round-up 13

Last week saw a significant easing of social distancing measures in England from 4 July”.

Charities weekly round-up – 6
Charities weekly round-up – 6

The last few weeks have proved what charities can achieve when put to the test – but we also need to remember that, now more than ever, charities need our support.

Charities weekly round-up
Charities weekly round-up

It will come as no surprise that this round-up focuses on the coronavirus pandemic and how it is affecting charities.