Pots of Gold

Name: Bridge House Trust


Contact details: Bridge House Trust, Corporation of London, PO Box 270, Guildhall,  London EC2P 2EJ, 



What is it?    A trust whose origins can be traced back to 1097. Originally set up to support the upkeep of London’s bridges, the trust now funds “charitable purposes for the general benefit of the inhabitants of Greater London”.


Who runs it?    The trust’s sole trustee is the Corporation of London local authority.


How much money does it give away?    More than £140m since it began making grants in 1995. Currently granting over £16m per year.


How big is each grant?    There are two schemes: The Small Grants Scheme offers one-off grants of between £500 to £5,000. The Main Grants programme has no limits although the trust will not become a project’s sole or major source of funds.


Who or what is the money intended for?    Small Grants are awarded to London-based organisations with an income of less than £50,000 per year.    Main Grants are awarded for London projects and which focus on one of the following areas:   

  • Access for disabled people
  • London’s environment
  • Children and young people
  • Older people in the community
  • Strengthening the voluntary and community sectors   
Projects that benefit children and young people are defined as those working with people up to the age of 25 and which “aim to redress imbalances in opportunities caused by poverty, disadvantage or circumstance and to encourage young people to fully participate in society”.


What kind of projects are eligible?    Grants for children and young people are awarded in three key areas:   

  • Preventive work – eg: to reduce violence, break cycles of abuse, support integration between disabled and non-disabled children.
  • Civic engagement – eg: to enable young people to become active in their communities.
  • Crisis support – eg: helping young people caught up in substance abuse, homelessness, self-harm.

Who can apply?  Charitable organisations based in Greater London. No individuals or statutory bodies.


How do I apply?  Application forms can be downloaded from: bridgehousegrants.org.uk/downloadforms.htm


Applications for grants over £25,000 need to be accompanied by a more detailed proposal.


When should I apply?    There is no deadline – the trustees meet 10 times a year to consider application – and “around 50% of the applications received are successful,” says principal grants officer Jenny Field. “It usually takes around four months after receiving a proposal for a decision to be reached.”


How will the Trust monitor our performance?    Accounts must be provided to meet the Sorp (Statement of Recommended Practice) requirements of the Charities Act. Projects will also be asked to provide an annual report. Further monitoring, including visits, takes place according to the size of the project.

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