Audit Lincolnshire wins CIPFA’s Cliff Nicholson Award


Ground-breaking internal audit work carried out by Audit Lincolnshire has been recognised in a national award scheme by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). The team, made up of professionals from Lincolnshire County Council and the City of Lincoln Council, won this year’s prestigious Cliff Nicholson Award for Innovation and Excellence in Public Service Audit.

The team at Audit Lincolnshire have established two initiatives that have helped to widen their assurance coverage as well as enabling management to think more deeply about their own appetites for risk. Together with a risk appetite model, the practical assurance mapping process has led to risk-based audit planning that filters through to all members of the audit team as they undertake their work.

The award will be presented to Lucy Pledge, Head of Audit and Risk Management, at CIPFA’s annual Audit Conference dinner in Nottingham on 23rd May. On learning that the team at Audit Lincolnshire had won the Cliff Nicholson award, Lucy Pledge said:

"I’m delighted that Audit Lincolnshire's work has been recognised by CIPFA for its innovation – I hope others will find it equally helpful when they wrestle with the tricky areas of ‘risk appetite’ and ‘assurance mapping’. We found that it has certainly raised our profile with our clients and has helped them think about risk in a different way, whilst improving accountability and their assurance frameworks.”

Lucy will be presenting an information session at the CIPFA Audit Conference next month, based on the practical steps that other organisations can take to implement the initiatives developed by the Audit Lincolnshire team.


Notes to editors:

The award was founded by Cliff Nicholson, CIPFA President in 1990, who passed away in 2011.  At the end of his presidential year, he established the eponymous award to encourage the development of the audit profession and recognise outstanding work in the field of audit. Cliff had a distinguished career in public services for over 40 years, most of that time in local government audit and was awarded a CBE for his contribution to the audit profession in 1986.

CIPFA’s Audit Conference is taking place in Nottingham on the 23 and 24 May, further details can be viewed here:


CIPFA, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, is the professional body for people in public finance. Our 14,000 members work throughout the public services, in national audit agencies, in major accountancy firms, and in other bodies where public money needs to be effectively and efficiently managed. As the world’s only professional accountancy body to specialise in public services, CIPFA’s portfolio of qualifications are the foundation for a career in public finance. They include the benchmark professional qualification for public sector accountants as well as a postgraduate diploma for people already working in leadership positions. They are taught by our in-house CIPFA Education and Training Centre as well as other places of learning around the world. We also champion high performance in public services, translating our experience and insight into clear advice and practical services. They include information and guidance, courses and conferences, property and asset management solutions, consultancy and interim people for a range of public sector clients. Globally, CIPFA shows the way in public finance by standing up for sound public financial management and good governance. We work with donors, partner governments, accountancy bodies and the public sector around the world to advance public finance and support better public services. This includes the development of local professional qualifications in African countries like Lesotho and Nigeria and in Europe in post conflict states in the Balkans.