VOICE: Local (Healthwatch Bolton and Healthwatch Wigan and Leigh) Statement
Healthwatch Bolton (now VOICE:local) accepted the generous grant you refer to from the former Directors of the now liquidated Healthwatch Wigan on a restricted funds basis. The Trustee board of VOICE:local, the organisation’s financial advisors and Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council – who are named in the Letter of Grant as the body responsible for ensuring the grant conditions are met – are all satisfied that the funds have been spent in accordance with the grant restrictions.
We would like to invite the public to join us in our efforts to ensure that the people of Wigan and Leigh have their voices heard by taking an interest in our activities, taking part in our engagement activities or becoming members of our organisation. For anyone who is interested we publish our accounts both on our organisational websites (www.healthwatchwiganandleigh.co.uk and www.healthwatchbolton.co.uk) and on the website of the Charities Commission.
Healthwatch England Statement made on 9/10/2017
“This issue has already been brought to the attention of Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council, and as the contract manager for Healthwatch Wigan and Leigh, they are satisfied that the funds have been spent appropriately and that there are no grounds for further investigation.
“We understand that the liquidator has now escalated the concerns that have been raised about the contract handover process to the Local Government Ombudsman and the Charity Commission, amongst others, and we now look for a speedy decision.
“We will continue to work with those running Healthwatch in Wigan and Leigh to ensure local people have a strong voice in how health and care services are delivered across the borough.”