1 Accounting policies

Basis of accounting

The financial statements have been prepared in accordance with applicable UK Accounting Standards on the historical cost basis.

As permitted by section 230 of the Companies Act 1985, a separate profit and loss account for the Company has not been included in these financial statements.

As permitted by the audit fee disclosure regulations, disclosure of non-audit fees information is not included in respect of the Company. As permitted by FRS 1 Cash flow statements, no cash flow statement for the Company has been included. As permitted by FRS 8 Related party disclosures, no related party disclosures for the Company have been included.

Investments in subsidiary undertakings

Investments in subsidiary undertakings are reported at cost less amounts written off.

Share-based payments

As described in the Directors' remuneration report , the Company grants awards of its own shares to employees of its subsidiary undertakings, (see note 21 of the consolidated financial statements). The costs of share-based payments in respect of these awards are accounted for, by the Company, as an additional investment in its subsidiary undertakings. The costs are determined in accordance with FRS 20 Share-based payment. Any payments made by the subsidiary undertakings in respect of these arrangements are treated as a return of this investment.

Own shares for settlement of share-based payment plans

Where the Company acquires its own shares for the purpose of satisfying share-based payment plans, the cost in excess of any exercise price payable by the plan participants is written off to the profit and loss reserve.

Current assets

Amounts are recognised at the lower of cost and net realisable value.

Financial instruments

In accordance with FRS 25 Financial Instruments: Disclosure and Presentation, the Company’s B Shares are classified as financial liabilities and held at amortised cost from the date of issue until redeemed or converted.


Provision for taxation is made at the current rate and, in accordance with FRS 19 Deferred tax, for deferred taxation at the projected rate on timing differences that have originated, but not reversed at the balance sheet date.