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30 November 2012


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me anonymous

The CSD were bestowing 'Chartered Designer' status on their members from around 1976 until very recently when they realised they could not, after the intervention of third parties and the Privy Council – I have the membership forms that state a benefit of being a CSD member is 'Chartered Designer' status, and includes the Minerva logo, so isn't that long ago! (I can send you a copy for your blog if you like).

All those subscriptions received under false promises!

So much for a professional organisation of professionals – I think you are better out of it and make better use of your (subscription) money.

Oh once the CSD found out they could not be 'Chartered Designers', they forgot to tell everyone they had already told they were and buried their heads in the sand (or too worried about claims of misrepresentation and having to pay back members' subscriptions)!

Why do you think they are now trying to introduce 'Chartered Designer'? Professionals? 'Carry on Desgn', Mind you that is probably an insult to all those Carry On films.

Stable and door.




I can send you a copy of a page with the CSD logo when it was highlighted single letters (the 1990's) that says under 'Why you should Join' – "Full membership of the CSD carries with it the status of Chartered Designer" (in bold).


It's easy to show a profit in the CSD accounts when all the debts are passed over to another company (Design Association Limited) and you don't pay the administration staff a salary (they call it vounteering and altruism, I think most of us would have other words for it).

Wasn't it Wilberforce who is credited with aboloshing slavery?


The unpaid administration volunteer is Carmen Lopéz-Martinez – Frank Peter's, CSD 's CEO/Secretary's partner.



What I want to know is how did the CSD Trustees of a Charity who control the Design Association Limited (DA) manage to agree to pay the Directors of the DA £89,827 and £83,469 in 2003 and 2004. The 3 Directors of the DA were Jeff Banks, Frank Peters and John Sermon.

Well they must have earned it. Really?

Only the DA spent £230,376 in 2004 and £190,359 in 2003 on Administration and made a loss of (£223,082) in 2004 and (£244,733) in 2003.

So making a loss of nearly quarter of a million pounds the CSD Trustees authorised payments to the Directors of around £173,000 in those two years making the losses even greater than otherwise been the case.

Note: Trustees are not allowed to profit from a Charity and the only person who was not a Trustee was Mr Peters, who of course drew a salary from the CSD during the two years in question.

Perhaps Jeff Banks or John Sermon would like to go public and explain.

All figures are taken from the published accounts.

(This is the majority of the half a million pounds liability referred to in David's post above).



re above comments

In July 2008 Frank Peters, CSD Secretary is on record having written to Design Week to say;

"As the professional body for design, our members still adhere to the code of conduct which rules against free or speculative pitching, and our Design Association Accreditation programme is designed to eradicate this practice.

The Chartered Society of Designers has a remit under its Royal Charter to promote professional practice "

So while CSD designers cannot work for free, CSD staff can 'volunteer' and NOT get paid. Is that adhering to a professional code of conduct and professional practice or hypocrisy? You decide.

Of course the CSD Trustees approve this behaviour.

And THESE are the very same people who want to tell you if you can be 'Chartered' or not and are setting the professional standards for that qualification while employing staff they chose not to reimburse for their efforts and contribution (whoever they are, interns included).

I don't think I want to be in 'their gang' either.

quote reference



Design Association Accreditation programme ...

ANOTHER failed CSD initiative!

Did it ever get off the ground – anyone?

stu pid

Am I being stupid?

If I become a CHARTERED DESIGNER why on earth would I want to be a member of the CSD? (apparently the deal is you can be a chartered deisgner and not a CSD member).

Chartered Designer = no future CSD membership = NO CSD.

Looks like an own goal to me, an d the CSD has lost 0-10!

AND CSD members voted for this? (maybe they simply don't want to be CSD members anymore?)

and if there is no CSD there can be no Chartered Designer (as no chartered body left to 'award' the designation).

Methinks noone has thought this through, unless I am just plain stupid.

me anonymous


The CSD 2011 Accounts (and all previous versions for the last ten years or more) state the Life Fellows Fund provides support to members suffering financial hardship. Great, no problem with that – well done, good initiative.

The 2010 Accounts state the Life Fellows Fund on 31 DECEMBER 2010 stands at £6,916.

Except in the latest agreed, approved and signed off 2011 Accounts there is NO Life Fellows Fund total. On 1 January 2011 it has gone, disappeared, no longer. What an overnight accounting trick that is. Impressive. £6,916 last night 31 December 2010, next morning 1 January 2011, gone vanished. (OK so it is an accountancy procedure... good trick though).

But the Life Fund and its purpose remains in the accounts, just no figures alongside, just a dash.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Oh look the Anice Alexander Fund has increased by.... yes you guessed it, the same amount as Life Fellows Fund total of £6,916.

So I guess any member suffering financial hardship will just have to suffer.

But hello, what is this?

Anice Alexander Fund on 1 January 2011 is £121,198 and at 31 December 2011 exactly the same at £121,198. Only in every previous years the Anice Alexander Fund has been the recipient of 'income'; one would assume interest earned. So what no interest in 2011? Odd.

And then the CSD in 2010 stated in their Annual Report
"The Society made an award of £1,000 per annum for three years from the Anice Alexander Fund to Leah Armstrong"
so why doesn't that expenditure of £1,000 to Leah Armstrong appear in the 2011 accounts under the Anice Alexander Fund expenditure? We can only conclude she didn't receive the award. But she is still doing her research as she attended the 2012 CSD Annual AGM. Odd.

That still does not explain how the Anice Alexander Fund remained static at £121,198 for exactly 365 days. Nor how any interest earned from the funds disappear really is a good trick. Or maybe the CSD Accounts are not a true and fair record?

These CSD Accounts are agreed, approved and signed off by 'professionals', CSD Trustees, and CSD members.

I think somebody needs to take a second look.

(And I could find no comment within the detailed Review of the Year explaining these Funds and the changes made).


A response to
Posted by: anonymous | 01 December 2012 at 08:57 PM

The unpaid administration volunteer is Carmen Lopéz-Martinez – Frank Peter's, CSD 's CEO/Secretary's partner.

the REAL problem lies (unfortunate use of the word) in the failure of the CSD in not declaring the work of volunteers (including CSD members) in ANY Annual Review and Accounts. Apparently Carmen Lopéz-Martinez has been working for years for the CSD for free and nobody knew...

... and if the Trustees did know they failed in their duty to report it. (and the Accountants and CSD Secretary also failed in their duties too – what else are they failing to do?).

SORPS, Page 8, paragraph 51 states

"51 Where a charity makes significant use of
volunteers in the course of undertaking its
charitable or income generating activities this
should be explained.

it is important for readers
to be provided with sufficient information
to understand the role and contribution of
volunteers. Such information may, for example,
explain the activities that volunteers help
provide, quantify the contribution in terms of
hours or staff equivalents, and may present an
indicative value of this contribution."

Accounting And Reporting By Charities:
Statement Of Recommended Practice
Page 8
Para 51


posted by: stu pid | 05 December 2012 at 10:37 AM

What, NO CSD?

That explains why Frank Peters, CSD Secretary/Chief Executive appears as the Chief Executive of,

the Chartered Institute of Designers

apparently registered at 1 Cedar Court and the telephone number is the same as the Design Association Limited (the CSD trading company) 020 7357 8282.

Do a google search for Chartered Institute of Designers


I love the CSD, well the 'CSD management';

Apparently somebody asked at the most recent AGM (30 November 2012) why so many Trustees had resigned over recent years (at times and recently the CSD Council has not been quorate).

"Ask them" apparently the response from 'CSD management' ...

... except the 'CSD management' slap confidentiality clauses all over Trustees and ex Trustees that prevent them from doing just that – explaining themselves to members or anyone else who asks a reasonable question. Again not unlike where this blog all started.

OK 'love' might be a bit strong but 'CSD management' keeps us amused.

Oh and by the way, the 'CSD management' then break those confidentiality clauses (we have the evidence).

Not sure I'd ever want to be a CSD Trustee – but, any Trustee past or present, feel free to comment here, we'd all love to hear from you.



At the most recent CSD AGM (30 November 2012);

"Members were encouraged to inform non-members of what the Society is about, and what it does."

NOBODY knows, not even members know what the Society is about and what it does.

AND therein lies the whole problem –

'ya don't know what ya doin',
'ya don't know what ya doin',

'ya don't know what ya doin'

and nor does anyone else.


A reply to

Posted by: savethecsd | 05 December 2012 at 05:22 PM

The unpaid administration volunteer is Carmen Lopéz-Martinez – Frank Peter's, CSD 's CEO/Secretary's partner.

SORPS also states

136 Where donated services
are received but not included in the Statement
of Financial Activities (eg volunteers) this should
be disclosed in the Trustees’ Annual Report if this
information is necessary for the reader to gain a
better understanding of the charity’s activities.

Something the CSD does NOT do.


When I was a member of the CSD there was a Council who developed policy and strategy and a Secretary responsible for the day-to-day running of the Society, who implemented the Council instructions and wishes. The Council represented the membership. (The CSD Council are also by definition Charity Trustees and culpable and responsible for the Charity, which is the CSD).

Now the CSD Council does not appear to represent the membership, develop anything, does as it is told by a Chief Executive who is paid £150k+ a year (including benefits) who designs and develops policy and the direction the CSD takes – but I could find no evidence that the membership ever voted for, or were aware of those changes.

It seems the CSD membership are no longer represented by anyone and that is the fundamental problem. So being a Chartered Designer wont change that and until it is changed, designers will not sign up – a qualification without representation means nothing.

The Charity Trustees need to fulfil their responsibilities and the Byelaws need changing so non CSD members can be Trustees – independent governance of the Society.


You only have youselves to blame; Chartered Designer was implemented by the CSD at two meetings, an AGM and an EGM when there were just 24 and 36 votes for it's introduction.

'Chartered Designer' introduced by less than 40 people.



Christina Onesirosan-Martinez employed by the CSD is the daughter of Carmen Lopéz-Martinez.

Christina Onesirosan-Martinez was employed by the CSD as Business Development Executive of The Design Association. (THAT failed).

CSD – Keeping it all in the family.

Just so you know where your CSD membership subscriptions go.



Anice Alexander bequethed £74,000 to the CSD in 1991 yet in 2011 the same bequest stood at £121,198, barely a penny spent in 21 years, the money used instead by the CSD to balance their books. The family of Anice Alexander took the CSD to task not long after the bequest, but were ignored - see Design Week links below.

"This money was subsequently borrowed by the society to bolster its flagging finances, to the dismay of Alexander's trustees and family (DW 17 June 1994)." (source Design Week 1 August 1996)

The Society continues to 'borrow' the money in 2012.

the CSD 2003 – 2009 Accounts say
"The purpose of the Anice Alexander fund is to enable the presentation of an annual award for women studying product design."

the CSD 2010 – 2011 Accounts say
"The Anice Alexander Fund is designed to provide assistance for females in the study or research areas of design in compliance with the overall objects of the Society."

So now the CSD have even chosen to change the terms of reference (it seems the CSD, between 1991 and 2010 could not, annually, find a worthy woman studying product design, despite the CSD claiming to represent all design professions all over the world – but are incapable of developing and administering a simple annual awards programme?)

But how could anyone, let alone a 'professional Society' not honour and respect the memory or wishes of Anice Alexander?

But hey, it balances the books.

Finance before ethics?




I don't see anything in the CSD Byelaws about the Secretary making policy and strategy

41. The Council shall appoint a Secretary who shall hold office during its pleasure and who
shall receive such remuneration as the Council may from time to time determine.

42. The Secretary shall be responsible for the books, records and documents of the Society
and under the control of the Council and committees shall conduct all the correspondence of
the Society and of the Council and committees, attend their meetings, keep a correct record of
their proceedings and ensure that applications for admission to the Society are in the form
prescribed, and that all the notices required to be sent to the members of the Society and of
the Council and committees are duly sent and are in the form prescribed.


What's wrong with the CSD?

CSD – Membership down,
approx half of 1998 figures (about 6,000 to about 3,000),

CSD income down,
approx half of 1998 figures (£643,296 to £311,188); –

CEO salary (and benefits)...
up, TRIPLED (£50k to over £150k+).

source CSD Annual Review(s)


"The CSD were bestowing 'Chartered Designer' status on their members from around 1976"

Posted by: me anonymous | 30 November 2012 at 04:31 PM

"The term 'chartered designer' remains unrecognised by the Privy Council, but not prohibited. A number of simple rules were devised by the Council in 1976-77 to govern use of the term

• Use of the term is restricted to Corporate members of the Society (i.e. Fellows and Members).

• It may also be used by partnerships or limited companies provided that ALL the partners/directors are Corporate Members.

• The term may not be qualified by the addition of extra words (chartered product designer etc).

• The term may not be shortened to C.Des"

From the CSD a:z of members services and benefits published in 1993.



see above

me anonymous

The CSD produced a total of 24 printed editions of 'The Designer', the CSD magazine.

Carmen Lopéz-Martinez became editor in Jan/Feb 2004 and under her 'leadership' the CSD produce just six copies before pulling the plug on the printed publication in 2005 – hardly a raging success!



SINCE 1976

see above!


"The CEO's partner, has supported the Society in different ways for over 17 years in her own right .... the Society is grateful for such assistance and altruism."
CSD President

Funny then, that two companies that Carmen Martinez-Lopez, who was a Director at the time, received £71,025 in fees and £9,654 in expenses in 1999 from the CSD (and I make that 13 years ago).

Mr Frank Peters was also a Director of the same two companies at the same time.

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