Benevolent Fund

About the Professional Billiards and Snooker Players’ Benevolent Fund

The Professional Billiards and Snooker Players’ Benevolent Fund is a registered charity set up in1983 to offer charitable assistance to professional billiards and snooker playing members of the WPBSA (past or present) and/ or their dependents who find themselves in a position where they require financial support due to ill health/disablement or otherwise.

The Fund is operated by Trustees appointed by the WPBSA Board. The Trustees are independent and base their decisions on the individual circumstances surrounding each application. All applications are treated on a strictly confidential basis.

The Trustees are bound by Charity Commission law and Guidelines in conducting the business of the Trust.

The Benevolent Fund is entirely dependent upon the periodic sums it has received from the WPBSA and any other donations that it might be able to attract. It is not currently a wealthy trust, the sums being generated annually being quite modest. The guideline policy of the WPBSA is for the Fund to remain in existence in perpetuity to give financial and other assistance to professional snooker players and their dependents.

To achieve this policy, the Trustees currently take the view that unless there are exceptional circumstances, funding decisions will take into account the capital available in the Fund. As at the present time interest accrued on monies held is very minimal.

Introduction to the Board of Trustees

Alan Chamberlain

Alan is one of snooker’s most experienced referees, who officiated on the professional circuit from 1982 until 2010. He refereed the World Championship final in 1997, as well as 8 Masters finals, and numerous other finals during his time working for the association.

He was also the Tournament Director for billiards until his retirement, and is now the Chairman of the newly formed World Billiards Ltd company, and also a Director of the WPBSA.

Mark Pears

Mark is the Managing Director of Litetask Ltd who are the largest independent commercial lighting designers and distributors in the UK. Mark joined the business in 1998 and has been the Managing Director since 2005. He is a keen player and also enjoys watching and attending tournaments whenever possible. Mark is also a dedicated collector of snooker memorabilia.

Patsy Fagan

Patsy was a leading professional player for 13 years and won the first ever UK Championship in 1977, beating Doug Mountjoy in the final. He climbed as high as number 11 in the world. Patsy retired from the pro game in 1989 but remains involved in snooker as a coach.

Other Key Individuals

A former Trustee John Wood has offered to provide legal advice to the Trustees when required.

Lisa Bray acts as Secretary to the Trustees.

Get support from the Professional Billiards and Snooker Players’ Benevolent Fund

To be eligible for assistance, applicants to the Fund must be existing or past professional snooker and/or billiards players and who are or have also been members of the WPBSA, or their dependents aged 18 and over.

The Fund can provide support in a number of different forms as follows:

  • 1. A one-off grant payment to one or more beneficiaries which is non-repayable;
  • 2. A one off payment for advice from a Professional Finance Adviser.
  • 3. Repayable loans to one or more beneficiaries without interest, with or without security.

All applicants are asked to complete an application form and submit it to the secretary, Simon Brownell. This will detail personal and financial circumstances to assist the Trustees in their decision making and to provide medical evidence in support of their application where appropriate. All information disclosed is regarded as confidential to the Trustees.

Applications will need to follow guidelines imposed by the WPBSA Board. These Guidelines are intended to provide some clarity in the way the Benevolent Fund conducts its business, what it might consider as priorities, and information that might be helpful to potential applicants.

Guidelines

Currently, the WPBSA Policy Guidelines suggest that the Fund favours loans rather than grant payments. The Trustees support this view but also favour making modest repayments where they feel support is justified.

Players are reminded that any repayments agreed should be declared as appropriate as these payments could affect supplementary benefit entitlement already being received.

The Trustees currently favour the following priorities:

  • A one-off payment in the event of the death of a professional snooker and/or billiards player and WPBSA member to cover modest debts and immediate liabilities, and funeral and other expenses;
  • A payment that covers the private medical insurance policy of a professional snooker and/or billiards player through illness or injury related to the sport, who is either still actively involved in competition, who has been forced to retire from the sport as an active competitor, or who is a former player and member of the WPBSA.
  • A loan that assists a specific temporary situation relating to a member and which can be easily identified and repaid over a specific period of time. Applicant for loans will have to identify how the loan will be repaid over a period of time.

The Trustees have recently decided that they will no longer be able to provide financial assistance to tour players struggling with the cost of playing on the tour and that whilst they will consider all applications put to the board on a case by case basis, applications for such financial assistance are not likely to be approved.

Lower priority will also be given to members who suffer financial difficulty as a result of their carelessness or reckless behaviour related to debt, alcohol, drugs, gambling or any other addiction. In the event that Trustees agree to support such an application Trustees reserve the right to pay any financial support to third party organisations to support the beneficiary.

All applications to the Trustees are processed on a strictly confidential basis.

Support the Professional Billiards and Snooker Players’ Benevolent Fund

The PBSP Benevolent Fund is entirely dependent upon sums it has received periodically from the WPBSA and other donations. However, the sums generated annually are modest. The Trustees are keen to attract further donations to enable the Benevolent Fund to remain in existence in perpetuity to offer financial and other assistance to professional snooker players and their dependents.

The unrestricted funds held by the fund at June 2014 was £182,018 and this is down from the previous year’s figure at June 2013 of £208,013.

As can be seen, the resources available to the Trustees are dwindling therefore any donations would be greatly appreciated.

If you would like to make a donation to the PBSP Benevolent Fund please contact:

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