Summary

Tom specialises in charity law and is particularly known for his expertise in charitable status, the development of novel charitable purposes and the governance and control of complex charity structures, including charity spin-offs from the state. He acts for a wide variety of charities and social enterprises in various areas, including public interest information, educational and campaigning organisations; academic, professional and learned institutions; and heritage, science and environmental/conservation charities. Tom advises on contentious and charity-law compliance issues, structural re-organisations, amendment of royal charters, trading, mergers and restricted funds, special trusts and endowments.

"an expert in charity law who is confident and highly personable." Client Feedback in Chambers, 2021.

Professional Experience

Recent charity work includes:

  • establishing a new charitable purpose to cover Public Interest Journalism; registering the Public Interest New Foundation; and contributing to Dame Francis Cairncross’ submissions to the Lords Communications Committee;
  • advising the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust on planned spend-out and closure;
  • first registration of new charitable purposes Wikimedia UK (the organisation underlying Wikipedia) and local Healthwatch (local authority public health responsibilities);
  • assisting with the transfer of the National Citizen Service to a new Royal Charter body;
  • establishing a new Royal Parks charity to manage the capital’s royal park spaces;
  • assisting DEFRA with the establishment of the Canal and Riverside Trust, the successor organisation in England and Wales to the British Waterways Board;
  • participating in diverse working parties on the development of charity law, including in relation to charitable journalism.
Interests

Interests include the 'common good', ‘public interest’ information and social-purpose enterprise and finance.

 

What our clients say

"an expert in charity law who is confident and highly personable."

Client Feedback in Chambers, 2021

What our clients say

"He provides quality advice that is well presented and has insight into what we are trying to achieve."

Client feedback in Chambers - 2020

What our clients say

Tom Murdoch …is praised for his "integrity and attention to detail as well as his remarkable energy and complete focus on achieving great results for his clients. He remains calm and persuasive when dealing with regulators and counterparties during the most complex negotiations".

Legal 500 - 2017