The directors are responsible for preparing the annual report and the Group and parent Company financial statements in accordance with applicable law and regulations.

Company law requires the directors to prepare Group and parent Company financial statements for each financial year. Under that law, they are required to prepare the Group financial statements in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the EU and applicable law and have elected to prepare the parent Company financial statements in accordance with UK Accounting Standards, including FRS 101 'Reduced Disclosure Framework'.

Under company law, the directors must not approve the financial statements unless they are satisfied that they give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the Group and parent Company and of their profit or loss for that period.

In preparing each of the Group and parent Company financial statements, the directors are required to:

  • select suitable accounting policies and then apply them consistently;
  • make judgements and estimates that are reasonable, relevant, reliable and prudent;
  • for the Group financial statements, state whether they have been prepared in accordance with IFRSs as adopted by the EU;
  • for the parent Company financial statements, state whether applicable UK Accounting Standards have been followed, subject to any material departures disclosed and explained in the parent Company financial statements;
  • assess the Group and parent Company's ability to continue as a going concern, disclosing, as applicable, matters related to going concern; and
  • use the going concern basis of accounting unless they either intend to liquidate the Group or the parent Company or to cease operations, or have no realistic alternative but to do so.

The directors are responsible for keeping adequate accounting records that are sufficient to show and explain the parent Company's transactions and disclose with reasonable accuracy at any time the financial position of the parent Company and enable them to ensure that its financial statements comply with the Companies Act 2006. They are responsible for such internal control as they determine is necessary to enable the preparation of financial statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud or error, and have general responsibility for taking such steps as are reasonably open to them to safeguard the assets of the Group and to prevent and detect fraud and other irregularities.

Under applicable law and regulations, the directors are also responsible for preparing a strategic report, directors' report, directors' remuneration report and corporate governance report that comply with that law and those regulations.

The directors are responsible for the maintenance and integrity of the corporate and financial information included on the Company's website. Legislation in the UK governing the preparation and dissemination of financial statements may differ from legislation in other jurisdictions.

Responsibility statement of the directors in respect of the annual financial report

We confirm that to the best of our knowledge:

  • the financial statements, prepared in accordance with the applicable set of accounting standards, give a true and fair view of the assets, liabilities, financial position and profit or loss of the Company and the undertakings included in the consolidation taken as a whole; and
  • the strategic report includes a fair review of the development and performance of the business and the position of the issuer and the undertakings included in the consolidation taken as a whole, together with a description of the principal risks and uncertainties that they face.

We consider the annual report and accounts, taken as a whole, is fair, balanced and understandable and provides the information necessary for shareholders to assess the Group's position and performance, business model and strategy.

By order of the board

Alan Dunsmore
Chief executive officer
20 June 2018

Adam Semple
Group finance director
20 June 2018