BIAZA Treasurer

Job Title: BIAZA Treasurer
Contract Type: Permanent
Location: Unknown
Salary: 0 - 0
Reference: BIAZA Treasurer
Contact Name: Frankie Lawrence-Thompson
Contact Email:
Job Published: March 22, 2021 11:10

Job Description

The British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) is the professional body for zoos and aquariums throughout Britain and Ireland. The BIAZA membership, currently over 120 members, represents the diversity of zoos and aquariums in Britain and Ireland and this diversity is a strength of BIAZA’s brand. BIAZA leads and supports its members and helps to promote the work of good zoos and aquariums. BIAZA believes that the natural world is intrinsically precious and that zoos and aquariums, through the association, should be a powerful force in the care and conservation of the natural world. BIAZA is committed to being a progressive association.  


The BIAZA Office currently operates with eight staff including one part-time permanent and one part-time temporary position. BIAZA has charitable status and is governed by a Council composed of the Chairs of the Standing Committees and representatives of the Members. The Council also has representatives of the Associate Membership and the British Veterinary Zoological Society.  


Much of the work of BIAZA is carried out on a voluntary basis by the members, through the standing committees and associated working groups, in line with BIAZA’s strategy. The BIAZA Office is responsible for the day-to-day running of the Association, coordinating and facilitating the work of the standing committees, and moving forward on priority work streams.  


BIAZA has steadily progressed over the last decade and more, building on previous strengths. There are a range of challenges and opportunities coming up over the next few years which BIAZA must be prepared to meet in order to support the membership. The global COVID-19 pandemic has been the biggest single challenge to the zoo and aquarium sector in many decades.  The next year and beyond will require a focus on helping our members to recover from this crisis. In addition, BIAZA will be developing a new strategy, drawing on the CBD post 2020 framework and the UN Sustainable Development Goals to establish a stronger bond with the wider conservation community.  


The Role

BIAZA are looking for a suitably qualified Honorary Treasurer to join the Council of Trustees to provide oversight of and advice on the charity’s finances.


The Treasurer is a trustee with a vital, specific, role on Council, to help the trustees carry out their financial responsibilities. They do this by:


  • presenting financial reports to Council in a format that helps Council understand the charity’s financial position
  • advising Council on how to carry out its financial responsibilities
  • liaising with professional advisors
  • overseeing the preparation and scrutiny of annual accounts


The Treasurer’s specific responsibilities are to:


  • Take a lead role in ensuring BIAZA conforms with both Companies Acts and Charity Commission requirements
  • Liaise with relevant staff, committee members and/or volunteers to ensure adequate governance regarding the financial viability of the organisation
  • Chair the Finance and Resource Committee in line with standing orders and terms of reference and report findings/developments to Council
  • Make fellow committee members aware of their financial obligations and take a lead in interpreting financial data to them
  • Regularly report the financial position at Council meetings (balance sheet, cash flow, fundraising performance etc)
  • Oversee the production of an annual budget and propose its adoption at the last Council meeting of the previous financial year
  • Ensure, from a governance side, that proper records are kept and that effective financial procedures and controls are in place, i.e.:
    • Cheque signatories/bank signing and electronic transfer authorities
    • Set levels of authority for all expenditure and contractual commitments
    • Salary payments
    • Pensions
    • PAYE and NI payments
    • Proper use of restricted and allocated funds
    • VAT charged and recovered in line with current regulations
    • Others as appropriate
  • Appraise the financial viability of plans, proposals and feasibility studies
  • Lead on appointing and liaising with auditors/an independent examiner


The Treasurer is also a trustee of the charity. As a trustee you will be responsible for the overall governance and strategic direction of BIAZA. Responsibilities include:

  • Contributing meaningfully to the strategic development of BIAZA;
  • Developing positive and constructive relationships with the Chair and Trustees, Chief Executive and whole BIAZA team to enable effective discussion and decision making;
  • Holding the Executive to account for its leadership and management of the Association, providing constructive challenge and support, ensuring that adequate systems of control and risk management are in place and that the Association is sustainable and financially viable;
  • Acting with integrity, objectivity and honesty and promoting openness and trust in accordance with accepted standards of behaviour in public life;
  • Preparing for and fully participating in Council meetings;
  • Using any specific skills, knowledge or experience you have to help Council reach quick and sound decision by leading discussions, focusing on key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, or other issues in which the trustee has special expertise;
  • Representing the Association at key events and meetings.


More details about the role of trustee can be found in the Charity Commission’s Guidance note, The essential trustee: what you need to know, what you need to do.


Time Commitment

Council meets 4 times a year during office hours. Council meetings have traditionally been held in person. It is probable that some meetings will now be online, however, trustees must be willing to attend in-person meetings at varying locations, likely to include London. Trustees are also expected to attend the Annual General Meeting (and conference where possible). Dates of Council meetings are set several months in advance and papers are generally available 2 weeks before each meeting.  


As treasurer you will also be expected to chair the Finance and Resource Committee which meets 4 times per year approximately 3-4 weeks before Council meetings. Papers will generally be available 2 weeks before each meeting. As with Council meetings it is probable that some meetings will now be online, however, the treasurer must be willing to attend in-person meetings.


Person specification/experience

Each trustee must have:

  • A commitment to BIAZA’s vision and mission
  • Ability to work as part of a team
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trustees
  • Ability to think creatively
  • Open and transparent approach
  • Strategic vision


In addition, the treasurer must have:

  • Knowledge and experience of current financial practice relevant to registered companies and charity organisations
  • Knowledge of accounting systems and financial management
  • Good financial analysis skills
  • Ability to communicate clearly

Apply for this job:

Please send a CV and covering letter  to Application deadlines is 30 April 2021. 

If you are interested in the role and would like to discuss it with us prior to applying, please contact the Chair of BIAZA Council, Dr Christoph Schwitzer, or the Chief Executive, Dr Jo Judge, via

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