NCCF - Mr John Baron (Patron) Resigns after only 7 Months!
Updated: May 12, 2019
Mr John Baron MP resigned as Patron of the Nuclear Community Charity Fund (NCCF) on the 14th December 2018 after being announced in a blaze of publicity on the 22nd of May 2018.
On the Exposure Press website on 22nd May 2018 his appointment was announced:
Member of Parliament for Basildon and Billericay, John Baron becomes the first Patron of the Nuclear Community Charity Fund.
On the 15th of May 2018, the NCCF announced that John Baron had accepted the offer to become Patron of the Charity. John has championed our Nuclear Veterans and their families, keeping their plight and struggle for recognition alive in Westminster.
Commenting on the appointment Jeff Liddiatt, NCCF Chairman said:
"I am so pleased to be able to announce John’s patronage. He has been a stalwart champion of the nuclear community for many years. Without the huge amount of work and support from John, there would have been no recognition by the PM, no Aged Veterans Fund and no NCCF."
John joins an NCCF team leading the way in providing care, sponsoring research and delivering quality information to members of the British Nuclear Survivor Community.
So why did John decide to resign after what is probably the shortest time spent as a Patron of a UK Charity?
There is no mention of his resignation on the Exposure Press or NCCF website, in fact, John announced it himself on his website:
MP will remain a supportive friend of the nuclear veterans
Having initially been introduced to the issue by a constituent, for many years John Baron MP has led the successful Parliamentary campaign for recognition for the unique service of the British nuclear test veterans. In the course of this, John became Patron of the Nuclear Community Charity Fund (NCCF) at the request of his friend Jeff Liddiatt. As Jeff, the NCCF Chairman, is handing over the helm of the charity after many years of service, John is also stepping down as Patron.
“It has been an honour to play my part in securing official recognition of the test veterans’ unique service, and it is good news that the grant we campaigned for from the Aged Veterans’ Fund is helping to improve the lives of so many veterans and their families. All involved in the campaign can look back with great satisfaction.”
“The veterans and I have travelled a long road together, and I believe now is the right time to step down as Patron. It is fitting that this happens at the same time as Jeff Liddiatt also steps down as Chairman – though remaining as a trustee – who has been a brother-in-arms in the campaign and who has given so much time and effort for the cause over many years. I will of course remain a good and supportive friend of the nuclear veterans.”
Outgoing Chairman of the NCCF, Jeff Liddiatt, said,
“Without the support in Parliament of John Baron MP, the road would have been much harder. I step down as NCCF chairman with a happy heart knowing that the cause will go forward in the future under the chairmanship of Tony Jeffery. Tony has been involved for many years in the nuclear community’s cause.”
“From the NCCF’s point of view, it is good to know that John will continue to be a supportive friend of the nuclear community.”
So why has he stepped down after such a short period of time?
Supporters of the Nuclear Veterans that I contacted believe that the NCCF is not meeting it's grant needs, with Jeff Liddiatt stepping down as Chairman and Tony Jeffery's taking over, the fund now has an ex-Rosenblatts solicitor in charge, who was part of the team which lost the legal case.
After advertising for new trustees, a source close to the board has revealed that no one applied.
So let us examine the make up of the Fund:
Mr Heaps MBE, ex-chairman of the BNTVA remains as Portfolio manager and has total control of the Fund, IT, communications, projects and is being paid over £100,000 per year to control it with Steve Bexton via BH Associates (a company that did not exist until Mr Heaps helped the BNTVA to apply for the AVF Grant as a special adviser to the board and put forward his company to run the projects!)
Tony Jeffery, ex-BNTVA trustee takes over as Chairman.
Jeff Liddiatt, ex-chairman of the BNTVA takes over as Treasurer and authorises BH Associates invoices and approves trips to France for the trustees and BH Associates when overseas trips for Veterans are not funded and have been refused.
Tracey Morris, ex-chairman of the BNTVA takes over as Secretary.
Bob Ireland, ex-secretary of the BNTVA steps down as Secretary and remains as a trustee.
Ian Hall, ex-shop manager of the BNTVA remains as a trustee.
Don James, ex-BNTVA trustee remains as a trustee.
Martin Blackburn, ex-BNTVA trustee remains as a trustee
So all the NCCF Trustees and advisers were connected with the old BNTVA 1131134 at a time when the direction changed and they no longer campaigned for the Veterans, instead taking a payout from the government and funding a company setup by Mr Heaps.
After 7 months as a Patron, did he have a disagreement with the direction of the Charity? Did he decide that he did not want his name associated with the Fund? Only Mr Baron will be able to tell you.
One thing is for sure, the NCCF did not publicise his departure because of the embarrassment that it has caused them, it must be one of the shortest Patronages in history.
Who will become the next Patron? Who wants to get involved with a Charity that was setup to help the Veterans, but has paid BH Associates run by Mr Heaps and Mr Bexon over £300,000 so far, rising to over £400,000 by 2020. (according to information gathered from the AVF application)
On Twitter this week, an account was created in Iceland which tweeted the cover of the front of the latest Exposure magazine which shows Nigel Heaps and Jeff Liddiatt with extra speech bubbles. If you are on Twitter, look for @nccfexposed.
Are the NCCF in crisis?
Are the projects delivering?
Are Veterans getting what was promised?
Do the Veterans trust an ex-Rosenblatt solicitor?
Is the NCCF just another government funded organisation whose research will be used against the Veterans?
You can decide, Mr Baron did and now does not want his name associated with the Charity!