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'Grants policy' heading (carved timbers)

Guidelines for –

See also


Grants policy guidelines

Categories eligible for grant

The Trust provides financial assistance to UK registered or exempt charities whose activities fall within the following three categories, mainly within the United Kingdom:

  • care of and services for blind people, and the prevention and/or cure of blindness;
  • long-term care of people with learning disabilities either in a residential care or supported living environment in a way that provides a family environment and a wide choice of activities and lifestyle or by providing long-term day/employment activities;
  • care of and services for people suffering from cancer, and their families;

Please follow the links to our further guidelines for these categories.

For application deadlines see ‘How to apply’.

Please note that the trustees no longer support the conservation category. A very large one-off grant to a conservation charity, followed by a much reduced spend in this field in recent years, led to the Trustees’ decision in November 2012 to cease supporting this category completely. 

Other categories 

A small proportion of the Trust’s income may be allocated to assistance in other fields, but this is rare and reserved for causes that have come to the attention of individual Trustees. It is therefore only in very exceptional circumstances that the Trustees will respond favourably to requests from organisations whose activities fall outside the categories listed above.


It is unlikely that applications relating to academic research projects will be successful. The Trustees recognise the importance of research, but lack the resources and expertise required to judge its relevance and value.


Grants are awarded only to UK registered or exempt charities which must have proven track records of successful work in their field of operation or, in the case of newer charities, convincing evidence of ability. Grants will only be awarded in response to direct applications from the charity concerned.

The Trust will consider grants to charities of all sizes. Accordingly, grants vary in amount, but generally fall within the range of 5,000 to 20,000. The total amount awarded varies from year to year according to available funds. As a guide, in the year 2011–2012, 47 grants were awarded from our normal programme totalling 525,400.

In the current financial climate, commitments to make future payments are rarely given, with grants normally being one-off annual grants. Charities which have received a grant are encouraged to apply in the next and subsequent years, but should note that only rarely will grants be given to the same charity for four successive years. This does not however mean that a charity that has received three successive grants will not be eligible in future years, just that we would not generally award a grant in year four.

Exceptional grants

The Trustees may occasionally consider larger exceptional grants, but this is unusual and generally confined to charities that we know well and have supported for some time. There is no separate application process for this, and contenders will be identified from the normal grant round. In the year 2011/2012, one grant of 50,000 was awarded from this programme.