Issue - meetings

External audit progress update

Meeting: 25/01/2022 - Audit and Governance Committee (Item 67)

67 External audit progress update pdf icon PDF 207 KB

To provide the committee with a progress update of the work being undertaken by the external auditor, Grant Thornton.


Update, 21 January 2022:

Please note that the hyperlinks included in Appendix A – Herefordshire Council Audit Progress Report and Sector Update, pages 27-42 of the agenda reports pack, do not function as expected.  Version 2 (attached) includes updated hyperlinks but all other content remains the same, as originally published.


Additional documents:


The committee received a progress update of the work being undertaken by the external auditor, Grant Thornton UK LLP, and a general sector update; a slight update to the ‘Audit Progress Report and Sector Update’ document had been issued in supplement 1 to the agenda which provided updated hyperlinks to referenced materials.


The audit manager advised that the annual report was the next deliverable and that issues had been found which reflected the continuation of issues discussed previously around capital and children’s services.  The audit manager said that recent guidance from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities on ‘Measures to improve local audit delays’ would be shared with the committee.


In response to a question from the chairperson on the section ‘Local authority Covid-19 pressures’ (agenda page 37), the director of resources and assurance advised that the council submitted updates to government and a breakdown of the returns could be provided to committee members.  The cabinet member - finance, corporate services and planning said that information on the pressures and government funding were reported in the quarterly budget and performance reports to cabinet.  A committee member commented on the additional costs of service delivery in rural areas and there was a brief discussion about comparing different local authorities.


In response to a question about the clause shown on the contents page (agenda page 28), the audit manager explained that: any matters identified as part of the audit planning process would be brought to the attention of the committee; there could not be full assurance over everything, so audit was undertaken to a level of materiality; and the committee should gain assurance from the totality of assurance providers, i.e. external audit, internal audit and other mechanisms.  It was noted that materiality for the next financial year would be stated in the external audit plan.




That the external audit progress update, appendix A to the report, has been reviewed.




Action 134      Grant Thornton to share a document from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities in relation to the key actions arising from the Redmond Review.


This is available via the following link:


Action 135      The director for resources and assurance to provide a breakdown of returns in relation to additional expenditure due to Covid-19.