My wish has come true. The executors of my late partner’s estate have finally been caught out.

 Lancashire Telegraph 7th June 2014

 “A CHARITY treasurer has been fined £3,000 for charging the organization for trustee duties. Alan Rowntree, who is a partner at Beever and Struthers accountancy firm, in Blackburn, charged the Brian Mercer Charitable Trust £35,342 between 2002 and 2009 for the work, which is against Charity Commission guidance.”

 I will always remember Alan Rowntree’s words to me when I asked about the Arts Trust for which I was the main beneficiary and I know this because I saw the official draft two days before my partner died. “There is no Arts Trust,” were his very words to me. “That’s not true and you know it,” I challenged him, “I saw it with my own eyes.”  He denied all knowledge and showed me to the door. I fought with the trustees for many years – how I fought. Finally, something relating to sculpture was put in place, but when I applied I was refused even though it was my partner’s dying wish that I carried on painting and sculpting after he died. The way I see it, they cheated him, they cheated me and they cheated art. Sculpture is an expensive business. Who knows what amazing works I might have come up with had I had the financial backing.

 Cue for a song!

 You’re cheating art…. will make you weep…. you’ll cry and cry… and try to sleep… but sleep won’t come the whole night through you’ve been cheating art and they’ve caught up with you.”

 Unfortunately, they only got a slap on their cheating wrists i.e. a very small fine in relation to the huge amount of money they are in control of but it gives me a small sense of satisfaction after the way they have treated me.

 A spokesman for the Charity’s Commission said: “We received complaints about trustee payments and conflicts of interest within the Brian Mercer Charitable Trust. We decided not to take any further action than this because there was insufficient evidence to conclude that the trustees had acted outside of their discretionary powers. We will only intervene in cases where there is clear evidence of serious misconduct or mismanagement.”

 Maybe I should inform them about the Rolex watch listed in their ‘expenses’ when my lawyers asked for their draft expense account?



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