Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation is looking for a new Trustee – Property focus



Trustee – Property focus

Role description


About the Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation

The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation (operating as CAN Mezzanine) is a registered charity trading as a social enterprise earning income in direct pursuit of our aims. We help other charities and social ventures thrive, grow and maximise their impact, and strive to achieve this by offering business support, capital and flexible affordable office space.

We run six serviced offices in Central London that house around 1,300 individuals from 130 exclusively social organisations. The turnover is approximately £4m pa and all surpluses are re-invested in pursuit of our objects to grow social impact.

We have recently merged with Education Saves Lives, a charity spreading basic health and wellbeing education throughout the world’s poorest communities via DVD’s and the web to deliver lessons in local languages. Their current focus is an online, interactive, COVID-19 lesson in multiple languages.


Property developments

In the last 10 years we have grown our asset base from zero value to a current valuation of over £40m.  

We have just secured planning permission on our office block in Southwark, aiming to double it in size to 50,000 sq ft. Our ambition is to construct a purpose-built hub for our customers within walking distance of Westminster.

The COVID-19 pandemic is likely to have an impact on how our customers use offices. This is therefore perfect timing for us to review our portfolio. We plan to carry out an options appraisal on our properties, and then create the best possible hub in Southwark with an aim to ensuring that we are fit for purpose for the next 20 years.

With all of this property development being undertaken it is important that we have the necessary expertise on the Board. We are therefore looking for a new Trustee with appropriate property experience to help guide us as we carry out this work and develop our portfolio.


Role Description

Job title:                       Trustee – Property focus

Location:                      Central London (Old Street)

Reporting to:                Board of Trustees

Meetings per year:       Four Board meetings, one strategy day, telephone meetings as required, Property sub-committee (especially project focused work)

Time commitment:        Approximately one day a month

Remuneration:              This role is unremunerated. Travel expenses as well as other out of pocket expenses directly incurred as part of official Trustee business will be reimbursed


Role purpose

To be the Trustee with lead oversight of property matters for the Foundation and to play an equal part in the principal task of the Board of Trustees overall, this being to ensure that the Foundation operates efficiently and effectively to fulfil its charitable objects and maximises the benefit and value of its asset base.


What difference will you make for us?

Specific tasks for this role:

  • Oversight of the Foundation’s property portfolio, ensuring that the Foundation:
    • Manages its property portfolio effectively
    • Complies with all necessary legislation regarding the development and management of its property
    • Complies with Charity commission guidance on property holdings
  • Leading the development of the Foundation’s property assets in pursuit of its charitable objects:
    • Contributing to an Options Appraisal for the Foundation’s assets
    • Helping the Foundation secure best value from a sale, if recommended in the Appraisal
    • Overseeing the development of the Loman St (Southwark) property


General tasks:
  • Chair the Property Subcommittee (to be constituted)
  • Ensure the Foundation continues to pursue its purpose of supporting social organisations to maximise their impact through the offer of premises, skills and finance
  • Ensure that the Foundation effectively applies its resources (financial and otherwise) to delivering its mission
  • Develop and live the vision and values of the Foundation
  • Ensure that the Foundation meets all its legal requirements
  • Contribute actively to the Board of Trustees’ role in shaping strategic direction of the organisation, framing and reviewing policies
  • Act as an ambassador of the Foundation in the service of its purpose, vision and values


Person specification

To take up the critical role of Trustee, individuals need to be engaged and motivated in the work and mission of the Foundation. Commitment, engagement and reliability are crucial to fulfilling your responsibility as a Trustee. Key attributes are:

  • Experience of property development and management at a senior level in a commercial organisation:

    • Applicants are expected to have a wide knowledge of all things property but are likely to have one specialism. Key will be to have the ability to bring in external assistance where appropriate and required

  • A strong financial acumen and business understanding in relation to property development and management

  • A wholehearted commitment to the values, purpose and vision of the Foundation

  • A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort

  • Sound independent judgement coupled with the ability to think creatively

  • An ability to contribute to strategic board discussions in a collegiate yet robust manner as part of the core team

  • An understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship


Our Vision, Mission and Values:

CAN’s vision is for a strong and impactful social economy that creates a better society.


To deliver our vision for the public, our mission is to support social organisations to maximise their impact, sustainability and where appropriate, growth. We deliver on this mission by addressing the three key barriers Premises, Skills and Finance.


Collaborative: Generous in sector support we work collaboratively, sharing skills and knowledge to achieve.

Restless: Driven with a creative hunger we challenge norms, harnessing passion and energy to deliver

Inclusive: Approachable, flexible and caring, we have faith in people, respect individuality and give a voice

Bold: We take risk, act transparently with integrity, honesty and courage to challenge and be heard


To Apply

Please send a supporting statement and your CV to outlining your own skills, experience and qualities and matching them to our key responsibilities, core competencies and values. CAN strives to be an equal opportunity employer. We particularly welcome applications from ethnic minority groups and from people with disabilities.

Closing date: 05 July 2020

Video interviews will be held between 15 and 17 July


Category: CAN Group