Phil Horrell, founder & Director of PH CONSULTANCY

I often use the phrase “trigger point” to describe those moments in your life when you make a decision which changes everything.


Of course there are those life changing decisions which you plan for, such as marriage, starting a family, buying a house; others are less planned, more subtle but equally important. Agreeing to work in the Office of the Regulator of Community Interest Companies was such a moment for me. Over a 30 year career in the Civil Service, I had worked in a number of government departments in London, Newcastle and Wales dealing with policy work ranging from pensions, regional aid and intellectual property. I assumed that this job would be the same, very interesting but pretty much like all the rest.

How wrong could I be; this posting was like no other. Unexpectedly, I found myself at the forefront of a social revolution. CICs were about to enter the world screaming and shouting and social enterprise in the UK was never going to be the same.

I joined one month before our doors opened in the summer of 2005 and retired 11 years later in October 2016 as the Deputy Regulator. I was part of an amazing story which saw over 12,000 CICs being placed on the public register; a six-fold increase on the numbers forecast. CICs now deliver community benefit throughout the UK and beyond and operate in every economic sector. They come in all shapes and sizes, the corner shop standing proudly alongside million pound spin-outs. They all share a common goal to deliver community benefit and they are all regulated to make sure they do so.

Now I have time to look back, I realise I was in a privileged position. So lucky to work for 3 different regulators and to be supported by a brilliant team, all of us dedicated to delivering the best service possible. We listened to the sector, we changed the legislation, we made it easier for CICs and we helped the fledgling soar.

I know that there will be few people in this country who knows more about CICs and the legislation unpinning this model than myself and I now want to take the opportunity to give something back to the sector and draw on the knowledge and experience that I have gained over the last decade.

I have set up PH Consultancy to do just that.

To provide advice and guidance to those wishing to become CICs, to help those that are CICs and to get the message out to those that matter, the movers and shakers, the bankers, the investors, and most importantly the public because it is they who will ultimately decide whether the CIC succeeds.

Let’s be loud let’s be proud, and let’s keep stating the message that CICs are a force for good and that they are here to stay.

PH Consultancy

Clear, unambiguous and straight advice from the experts. Advice you can trust at a price you can afford.


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