Section A10: External work which could impact on your duties for BBSRC:

A10.2: Main page

Code on gifts and material hospitality

1. Introduction and background

1.1 This appendix sets out the rules governing the acceptance or provision of gifts, material hospitality or other benefits during the course of your employment. The rules do not apply to attendance at BBSRC, Scottish MRP or RESAS Boards and Committees and other BBSRC, Scottish MRP or RESAS organised events.

1.2 Material hospitality, entertainment, gifts or other benefits have the potential for accusations to be made of improper conduct or inappropriate use of public funds, and although in the majority of cases the sums involved may be small, there may still be instances which attract unwanted attention from external sources. Such things can also raise concerns of regularity and propriety, which could be seen to compromise personal judgement or integrity. These can include benefits received through loyalty schemes which give personal rewards to its members (see paragraph 1.3). You must therefore comply with these rules. This is particularly important if you are in contact with contractors, suppliers and consultants.

1.3 Loyalty schemes

These are, by definition, designed to be for the benefit of the issuing company or group by encouraging a pattern of expenditure in their favour. Staff using such schemes could be perceived as being influenced in their behaviour or pattern of expenditure by the offer of a reward/benefit by purchasing from a particular service or company. Therefore, establishment money, either directly or indirectly, cannot be used to promote such schemes. Further information on loyalty schemes is in paragraph 2.5 below.

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2. Rules and procedures

You must inform your Head of Operations (establishments) or Council Secretariat (Swindon Office) of all gifts and all material hospitality (including benefits accrued from the use of a loyalty card), whether given or received, if the value of any individual item exceeds £25 (see paragraph 3 below), and you may also be required to surrender a gift you have received if the value exceeds £75 (see paragraph 3 below).  You must also monitor the total value of gifts received from the same supplier in a tax year.  If the total value exceeds £250 you must inform your Head of Operations (establishments) or Council Secretariat (Swindon Office).  In addition, you must adhere to the following at all times:

2.1 Gifts given

2.2 Gifts received

2.3 Material hospitality given

2.4 Material hospitality received

2.5 Loyalty Schemes

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3. Recording and disposal of gifts/hospitality etc

Provided you follow the rules and guidelines in paragraph 2 above, no action is necessary if a gift or some material hospitality (including benefits accrued from the use of a loyalty card) is either given or received by you provided the value amounts to no more than £25 and/or the total value of gifts received does not exceed £250 in a tax year from one supplier; and you may retain any such gifts you receive.

Gifts or material hospitality with a value above £25 and/or £250 in a tax year from one supplier (including benefits accrued from the use of a loyalty card), whether given or received by you, must be notified to the Head of Operations (establishments) or Council Secretariat (BBSRC Office) as soon as possible by sending them details using the form in A10:2i. The information will be held in the register maintained for that purpose. You may retain gifts received of such value provided details have been so notified, and provided the value does not exceed £75 (£125 for gifts from foreign governments or international organisations). If the value of the gift does exceed £75/£125 you must surrender it to your Head of Operations (establishments) or Group Director (BBSRC Office). The surrender is recorded on the above from. The Head of Operations/Group Director will decide on the disposal of surrendered gifts in one of three ways:

The decision must be noted in the register.

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4. Control

The Head of Operations/Council Secretariat is responsible for providing assurance to the BBSRC Chief Executive/establishment Director that this area is being properly controlled.

Every six months, the Head of Operations (establishments) or Council Secretariat (BBSRC Office) will send a report to the establishment Director (or Office Administration Group for BBSRC office).

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Last updated 11/08/11
Amendment 132 - August 2011