Where can I find out how PCA spends it funds?
The PCA’s Annual Accounts are publicly available on the Charity Commission website.
How is the PCA funded?
PCA receives membership fees which are currently (2018) £7.00 for an individual and £11.00 for a household. These cover the basic administration costs of running the organisation including distribution of its newsletters; subsidise the weekly Tea Club for the elderly and their Christmas Party; and any surplus goes toward the PCA’s Awards scheme.
When (and if) the PCA holds its two major events, Party in the Park, and Light Up the Lane, these are funded in distinctly different ways. They are run as financially standalone events and not cross-subsidised by each other.
How are PCA two main local events funded?
The annual summer Party in the Park is funded from three sources : by charging an entrance fee, (now £3.00 per adult), the charges paid by stallholders and income from the beer tent. Plus we charge for rides on the Carousel. There are considerable costs involved in setting up this event, and items such as the fencing, skips, toilets, marquees, water, stage, sound system and other equipment hire, Carousel hire, security, and park hire fees add up to in excess of £20,000. Traditionally this is the biggest single source of funds which can be allocated to the PCA’s Awards scheme, with a surplus of around £5,000 being made. With this event, there is always a weather risk, and PCA prudently holds a substantial reserve against this.
For the near-Christmas Light Up the Lane it would be impossible to charge an entrance fee given the number of entry points onto Pitshanger Lane. There isn’t a beer tent either! The event since its start in the early 2000s has traditionally been funded by many of the Lane traders, other local organisations and businesses, with the PCA recruiting and providing all the volunteers required both for planning the event, and manning it on the day.
It has proved impossible to find a volunteer event manager for Light Up the Lane, and thus the expense of this is now added to this year’s budget for Light Up the Lane. For 2018, a major fund raising initiative has successfully raised the funds necessary, thanks to on-line crowdfunding, sponsorship by some of the Lane traders, and by local organisations and businesses. Full details of the estimated 2018 budget are available on our Light Up the Lane webpage. However, because of the way Light Up the Lane is funded, we will be looking again for sponsorship and support in 2019.
At Light Up the Lane, the PCA generally uses the income from the stallholders and the BBQ, and the surplus on our winter raffle to add funds going to the Awards scheme along with the surpluses from Party in the Park and the annual subscriptions. As a charity it cannot subsidise an event which potentially benefits commercial organisations and would have to change its charity objects if this was to be the case.