Lewisham Music transfer – Bates Braithwaite Wells LLP

Posted on 18th May, 2019

In 2017, a team here at Bates Wells advised London Borough of Lewisham on all aspects of the transferring of its music services out of the Borough, to an independent charity.

Like many local authorities, the Borough wanted to find a way for its successful Lewisham Music Service to continue to thrive, whilst providing new opportunities for access to new funding streams, new premises and new governance.  At Bates Wells, we have a wealth of experience in assisting local authorities consider and put into place new and alternative delivery models and have spun out over 20 different local authority services in the last three years.

We advised the Borough on the options available for delivery of the service, including the tax structure of the different models. Once the Borough had settled on an independent charity, we advised on the establishment of the new entity. This included advising on an appropriate legal and governance structure and obtaining registration of the charity with the Charity Commission for England and Wales.

After these initial stages, we prepared the legal transfer documentation and advised Lewisham Music on the negotiation of documentation.  As part of this, we looked at the property, employment, pensions and tax aspects of the transfer.

The asset transfer completed on 1 April 2017, and since then, Lewisham Music has continued to thrive, and has this year found a new home in the Fellowship, an exciting new arts and cultural facility for the Borough. We have been providing ongoing advice to the charity since then.

As an independent charity, Lewisham Music is able to benefit from public donations and gift aid, and pursue other income generation options, as well as the continued support it receives from the Arts Council. It continues to be the music education hub lead organisation for Lewisham, partnering with all of Lewisham’s maintained schools, free schools and academies, alongside a range of local and regional organisations.

We’re delight to have helped Lewisham Music on its journey – and know that it is well placed for more exciting opportunities ahead!

Asset Transfer – Lewisham – bwbllp