The Fund is operated by Trustees appointed by the WPBSA Board. The Trustees act independently of the board in reaching decisions on applications received. All applications are treated on a strictly confidential basis.
Below are further details of the Benevolent Fund, its Trustees, the overall financial policy and types of support it can offer.
The WPBSA Benevolent Fund is entirely dependent upon sums it has received periodically from the WPBSA and other donations. However, the sums generated annually are modest. The Trustees are keen to attract further donations to enable the Benevolent Fund to remain in existence in perpetuity to offer financial and other assistance to professional snooker players and their dependents.
If you would like to make a donation to the WPBSA Benevolent Fund please contact:
WPBSA Benevolent Fund
Tel: 0117 317 8216
To be eligible for assistance, applicants to the Fund must be existing or past professional snooker and/or billiards players and who are also members of the WPBSA, or their dependents aged 18 and over.
As at June 2009 the Fund held a total capital sum of £214,190, and in subsequent years as follows:
June 2010 £207,460
June 2011 £200,638
June 2012 £169,308
As can be seen, the capital sum is gradually being eroded, so any donation would be more than appreciated.
The current Trustees, who follow guidelines previously agreed by the WPBSA Board but act totally independently of the Board in reaching individual decisions, are:
Alan Chamberlain, one of snooker's most experienced referees, who officiated on the professional circuit from 1982 until 2010. He refereed the World Championship final in 1997, as well as 8 Masters finals, and numerous other finals during his time working for the association. He was also the Tournament Director for billiards until his retirement, and is now the Chairman of the newly formed World Billiards Ltd company, and also a Director of the WPBSA.
Mark Pears is the Finance Director of Litetask Ltd who are the largest independent commercial lighting designers and distributors in the UK. Mark joined the business in 1998 and has been the Finance Director since 2005. He is a keen player and also enjoys watching and attending tournaments whenever possible. Mark is also a dedicated collector of snooker memorabilia.
Patsy Fagan was a leading professional player for 13 years and won the first ever UK Championship in 1977, beating Doug Mountjoy in the final. He climbed as high as number 11 in the world. Patsy retired from the pro game in 1989 but remains involved in snooker as a coach.
A former Trustee John Wood has offered to provide legal advice to the Trustees when required.
Simon Brownell acts as Secretary to the Trustees and is Company Secretary of the WPBSA.
The Trustees are bound by Charity Commission law and Guidelines in conducting the business of the Trust.
These Guidelines are intended to provide some clarity in the way the Benevolent Fund conducts its business, what it might consider as priorities, and information that might be helpful to potential applicants.
The Overall financial Policy
First and foremost, the Benevolent Fund is entirely dependent upon the periodic sums it has received from the WPBSA and any other donations that it might be able to attract. It is not currently a wealthy trust, the sums being generated annually being quite modest. The guideline policy of the WPBSA is for the Fund to remain in existence in perpetuity to give financial and other assistance to professional snooker players and their dependents.
To achieve this policy, the Trustees currently take the view that unless there are exceptional circumstances, funding decisions will take into account the capital available in the Fund. As at the present time (September 2012) interest accrued on monies held is very minimal.
The Trustees are keen to attract further donations to enable the Benevolent Fund to play a more active role. WPBSA has already agreed to commit an element of any disciplinary fines it levies annually to the benefit of the Fund
TYPES OF SUPPORT
The Fund can provide support in a number of different forms as follows:
1. A one-off capital payment to one or more beneficiaries which is non-repayable;
2. A one off payment for advice from a Professional Finance Adviser.
3. Repayable loans to one or more beneficiaries without interest, with or without security.
Currently, the WPBSA Policy Guidelines suggest that the Fund favours loans rather than capital payments. The Trustees support this view but also favour making modest capital payments where they feel support is justified.
Players are reminded that any payments agreed should be declared as appropriate as these payments could affect supplementary benefit entitlement already being received.
The Trustees currently favour the following priorities:
1. A one-off payment in the event of the death of a professional snooker and/or billiards player and WPBSA member to cover modest debts and immediate liabilities, and funeral and other expenses;
2. A payment that covers the private medical insurance policy of a professional snooker and/or billiards player through illness or injury related to the sport, who is either still actively involved in competition, who has been forced to retire from the sport as an active competitor, or who is a former player and member of the WPBSA.
3. A loan that assists a specific temporary situation relating to a member and which can be easily identified and repaid over a specific period of time. Applicant for loans will have to identify how the loan will be repaid over a period of time.
Lower priority will be given to members who suffer financial loss as a result of their carelessness or reckless behaviour related to debt, alcohol, drugs, gambling or any other addiction. In the event that Trustees agree to support such an application Trustees reserve the right to pay any financial support to third party organisations to support the beneficiary.
All applicants are asked to complete an application form detailing personal and financial circumstances to assist the Trustees in their decision making and to provide medical evidence in support of their application where appropriate. All information disclosed is regarded as confidential to the Trustees.
All applications to the Trustees are processed on a strictly confidential basis.
Further information is available from:
WPBSA Benevolent Fund
Tel: 0117 317 8216
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