Charitable Aims

Find out about the Shipwrights' charitable aims

Charitable Aims

The Shipwrights' Charitable fund is a registered charity 262043 incorporating 262045.

How we deal with our charitable and educational aims

There is one committee which handles this work, entitled the Education and Charities Committee, chaired by a Court Assistant. Applications to the Company for help are handled by sub-committees of the E&C Committee, dedicated respectively to education and charity.

The Charities Sub-Committee

The Shipwrights Charities Sub-Committee meets three times a year, in February, June and November when decisions are made to distribute funds from its charitable reserves. Normally applications are not considered outside those meeting dates. Applications should be made in good time to allow the Committee to give them due consideration. Appeals are always acknowledged as soon as possible after receipt.

Our charity work

One of the main functions of the Livery Companies is their charitable work. Their origins lie in guilds of craftsmen and merchants who clubbed together, long before the days of pensions and insurance, to provide a safety net for widows and orphans, the aged and infirm, and for members who had fallen on hard times. To this day a number of companies continue those early traditions by running almshouses and old people’s homes.

Apart from grants to meet its City and Civic obligations, the Shipwrights charitable strategy focuses its support on maritime and waterborne projects and activities, and in particular on sea training and experience for youth.

The execution of this strategy is achieved through a screening process which has been established over many years to ensure that our contributions reach those individuals who need our support, and those organisations which have a low administrative cost thus enabling the value of our donation to be maximized. Our choice is always to give to individuals and organisations where we believe we can make a real difference.

We have seen that young people from deprived situations, where dysfunctional family backgrounds or other problems have led them down difficult paths, can benefit enormously from exposure to the structured life which outward bound and sail training offer. For those young people who are more fortunate, the Company can make a real contribution.through a number of charitable projects in maritime related higher education.

How to apply

The Shipwrights’ charitable giving may be divided into three broad groups:

  1. Grants to other maritime orientated charities such as the Marine Society and Sea Cadets, the Prince's Trust, seafarers’ missions and welfare associations, schools with strong maritime links, and the headquarters funds of youth and sail training organisations.
  2. Bursaries for young people for sail training or on outward bound courses. The majority of these bursaries are allocated through Tall Ships Youth Trust and the Jubilee Sailing Trust with the opportunity for Liverymen of the Company to nominate suitable candidates.
  3. Response to appeals.

Applications should be by letter or email addressed to the Clerk, and, if from an organization, should if possible be accompanied by the latest report and accounts. They will be acknowledged, and, if they do not fit our charitable criteria, rejected at the same time.

Applicants are encouraged to show how their particular cause will help us achieve our objectives. For example, grants for heritage projects, such as restoration of classic vessels, usually need to show:

  • they are being used to formally train young people in shipwright skills.
  • the vessel is listed by the National Historic Ships Committee.

Young people who are thinking of asking for help to go, for example, on the Tall Ships Race, should ask themselves the question which the Charities Committee asks itself: “What makes this person deserving of support from charitable funds?” Then they should make their case accordingly, providing the names and addresses of two referees who know them reasonably well, and are or were in positions of authority – teacher, doctor, clergyman, cadet CO, scout leader, etc.

If an application is for any length of time the Shipwrights will require regular reports to confirm ongoing viability. Reports from recipients of the value gained from all grants are always welcome.

If you wish to apply for a grant to go to sea with one of the sail training organisations, you should apply directly to them. Contact details are as follows:

Tall Ships Youth Trust Tel: 02392 832055 Email:
Jubilee Sailing Trust Tel: 02380 449108 Email