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Up to 100 Prince's Trust jobs to go

Up to 100 jobs could be axed at the Prince's Trust to cut administration costs, the head of the youth charity founded by the Prince of Wales said.

The move comes as the trust seeks to avoid having to dig into its reserves again - after suffering a £2.8 million funding shortfall last year.

Chief executive Martina Milburn told the BBC Charles was "well aware" of the proposed reduction and backed efforts to focus resources on frontline work.

The 1,300 staff are being consulted on the redundancies - which are expected to number between 50 and 100, mostly at the charity's London headquarters.

"Our head office has become a little too complicated and a bit too top heavy so we are basically slimming down head office and protecting our frontline delivery in order to get ourselves back to sort of break-even budget," Ms Milburn told BBC Radio 4's The World At One.

"We are looking at how, as a charity, our admin costs are as low as possible and our money going directly to young people is as much as possible.

"We are currently undergoing a period of consultation but we think it will be between 50 and 100 jobs so we will be going down from 1,300 to about 1,200."

Ms Milburn said the heir to the throne was "very well aware" of the use of reserve funds and of the move to slim down the staff.

"We felt it was very important to invest in young people in the recession," she said.

"We have the reserves in the bank to do that and the trustees took the view, along with the executive, that reserves are there for a rainy day and that for young people all around the United Kingdom it was certainly raining.

"The Prince understands basic finances and how you need to make sure that you spend as small amount as you can on administration when you are a charity."

While staff cuts may affect one "small" element of the trust's work with young people, a spokeswoman said the overall number being helped would not fall.

The trust still had £22 million in reserves and was not in debt, she pointed out.

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