Job Vacancy – Assistant to the Almoner

Employment Hours: 25 hours and we are open to considering a flexible working week.

Salary: £14,274 gross per annum
This advert will close on Sunday 30 July
It is anticipated that interviews will be held week commencing Monday 14 August
Download application form:
Complete the application form which you can download from the following link.
(note: we will not accept a CV)

Send all this information, preferably by email to Yvonne Kent, the Almoner at:


Are you a proactive individual with a flexible attitude, and a team player who is reliable and organised?

Our office is an essential part of our almshouse community. You will be the first port of contact for visitors, and enquiries. Therefore, previous experience of working with the public, over the telephone, face to face, and online within an office environment is desirable.

As the Assistant to the Almoner you will be responsible for supporting the general and financial administration of the Lancaster Charity and the Platten & Benson Almshouse Trust. This will be done by liaising closely with the Almoner and assisting the Almoner in the administration of the Charities.


Assistant to the Almoner

Location: Lancaster Charity, William Penny’s, Regent Street, Lancaster, LA1 1SG

Job Summary

Supporting general administration

Assisting the Almoner in the general administration of the Charities as directed including:

  • Acting as a first point for the public, residents, colleagues, trustees, and service suppliers through face to face, over the telephone, and online contact.
  • Dealing with incoming and outgoing mail, including preparing draft correspondence, making calls and arranging appointments for the Almoner as required.
  • Assisting in the administration of the Charities’ meetings and circulating the agendas, minutes and any other documentation prior to the meeting, including occasionally attending some social and other events as a representative of the Charity.
  • Taking responsibility for routine office tasks including filing, ordering stationery office equipment and office supplies, and organising the maintenance of office equipment.

Supporting financial administration

Assisting the Almoner in the financial administration of the Charities as directed including:

  • Assisting in the preparation of budgets and reports.
  • Administering, collecting, and accounting for maintenance contributions and other charges as necessary. Including receiving cash payments for maintenance fees, winter fuel, donations etc.
  • Dealing with invoices and payments and assisting in the financial management of the charities.
  • Administering the concessionary TV Licences scheme for all sites.
  • Recording and depositing monies with the bank.
  • Source and order goods as required.

Supporting the application and appointment of residents

Assisting the Almoner in the financial administration of the Charities as directed including:

  • Advertising property vacancies. Assisting in ensuring that properties are suitable and ready for re-letting. Helping in arranging remedial works required to bring property up to safe and legal letting standards.
  • Issuing and logging application forms. Receiving and acknowledging completed applications including the taking up of references.
  • Maintaining the waiting list of applicants.
  • Reviewing the waiting list when vacancies arise and notifying appropriate applicants, including arranging and hosting interviews for new residents alongside Chairman, the Clerk, the Almoner, and other Trustees.
  • Preparing and issuing correct documentation e.g. letters of appointment, resident handbook, current policies, and signing up new residents.
  • Advising new residents on maintenance fees, and charges.

Supporting property management

Assisting the Almoner in the property management of the Charities as directed including:

  • Dealing with property correspondence/queries, payments.
  • Liaising with the Almoner regarding the issuing of keys to residents and maintaining key control records.
  • Logging and acting on repair and maintenance requests.
  • Assisting in arranging PAT testing of appliances, ensuring fire checks, landlord gas and electrical tests, smoke alarm checks etc. are carried out and correctly recorded.
  • Liaising with the Almoner, Wardens and traders regarding repair and maintenance, assisting the Almoner in obtaining quotes.
  • Administering property charges including the payment of water rates, and the LCC Garden waste scheme as directed by the Almoner.
  • Administering the parking permit scheme for wardens, residents and visitors, including issuing confirmation of residency notices etc.

Supporting resident management

Assisting the Almoner in resident management of the Charities as directed including:

  • Maintaining residents’ records and ensuring they are reviewed and kept up to date.
  • Assisting in the issuing and administration of renewal notices to all residents on a three-year basis.
  • Issuing and receiving annual Resident Satisfaction questionnaires, log issues raised for report to the Almoner.

Supporting staff management

Assisting the Almoner in staff management of the Charities as directed including:

  • Maintaining records of staff annual leave, sickness etc.
  • Assisting in the arrangements for paying staff wages in line with instructions from the Charities’ Accountants.
  • Other Duties
  • To participate in role reviews and appraisals with the Almoner as necessary, and undertake any training as required.
  • To undertake any reasonable duties at the request of the Almoner which are commensurate with the role and responsibilities.


Essential Qualifications

  • Five GCSEs including Maths and English
  • A proactive individual
  • Experience of working in an office environment
  • Flexible and prepared to ‘muck in’ in a small office environment
  • Demonstrate good communication skills
  • Able to show initiative and work as part of a team
  • Able to prioritise workloads
  • Possess excellent computer skills with experience in using Microsoft Office products e.g. Word and Excel
  • Ability to maintain records, write reports, email etc.
  • Possess a proven track record of excellent attendance

Desirable Experience

  • Experience of working with the public, over the telephone, face to face, and online
  • Experience of using basic office based financial systems and accounting
  • Experience in residential property management environment
  • Familiarity with the responsibilities of charitable organisations
  • Awareness of regulatory/legal framework, gained preferably in a charitable organisation

How to Apply

If you think you fit the person specification and the job sounds just what you are looking for, then you need to:

  • Complete the application form which you can download from the following link: (note: we will not accept a CV)

Application Form

  • Complete the personal statement– this is your opportunity to say why you want the job; what you think you can bring to the two charities and how your qualifications and experience make you suitable.
  • Provide an email contact address so we can invite you for interview if you are shortlisted.

Send all this information, preferably by email to Yvonne Kent, the Almoner at:

If you prefer to submit your application in hard copy please do so by sending it to:

The Almoner, Lancaster Charity, William Penny’s, Regent Street, Lancaster, LA1 1SG

Please mark your envelope Private and Confidential

All completed applications should be received by the closing date Sunday 30 July.

Job Type: Part-time
Part-time hours: 25 per week

Salary: £14,274.00 per year


  • Bereavement leave
  • Flexitime
  • Sick pay


  • Flexitime

Work Location: In person

Application deadline: 30/07/2023
Expected start date: 18/09/2023

Our wonderful wardens

During the COVID 19 crisis our wonderful wardens have continued to help and support their residents in any way they can, practically and personally. We are very relieved to report that presently, we have had no COVID 19 cases on any site.

Although people are understandably keen to be back in regular contact with their families and friends, we will continue to discourage external visitors or callers unless essential, as this stance does seem to have been effective thus far in keeping our residents and staff safe. Our advisory signs at all sites will therefore remain in place for the time being.

All property moves were suspended on Government advice for the lockdown, but when we get the go ahead, we have several new residents ready to take up their new homes. This should bring us back up to near full occupancy again.

In the meantime, here is a lovely photo of Penny’s Hospital, taken by a resident last weekend in the early evening sunshine.

Penny’s Hospital in the evening sun

Many best wishes,
Yvonne Kent

Princess visits the Lancaster Charity

Lancaster’s own royal returned to the city on May 29 2019 to join in three special celebrations.

Princess Alexandra, who became founding Chancellor of Lancaster University 55 years ago, officially opened the new Community Fire and Ambulance Station and visited residents of Penny’s Hospital Almshouses and Westfield War Memorial Village..

Penny's Hospital
Penny’s Hospital

Trustees, residents and wardens welcomed the Princess to Penny’s Hospital, which was originally built by William Penny in 1719 for 12 poor old men and is run by Lancaster Charity. She unveiled a commemorative plaque and was presented with framed old and present-day photographs of the historic property as a keepsake.

Half-a-century on, it was a return meeting for the Princess and Roger Carradice, chairman of Lancaster Charity trustees. He reminded her that the last time they met was 50 years ago when she conferred his degree at Lancaster University.

Alan Sandham JP