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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Charity to overhaul trustees in diversity transition

This news post is 7 months old

The Tudor Trust wants to be “more intentionally focused on racial and social justice”

A trust supporting work looking to improve the lives of those on the margins of society has announced it is set to replace its trustee board, as it evaluates how the trust operates and focuses on racial justice.

The Tudor Trust, with its assets of around £288 million, is currently closed for applications, having “set aside time to re-think how the trust operates in future”. 

It closed for applications in 2022, planning to be reopening in April 2023, before pushing this back indefinitely while the current process continues. 

The Tudor Trust is an independent charitable trust which supports work which tries to meet the many different needs of people at the margins of our society.

The charity wrote on its website: “Today we are launching a campaign to recruit a new cohort of trustees to the Tudor Trust Board. Though the Tudor Trust was originally established as a family trust, we have for some time been exploring how we can transition into a new, more open and diverse structure. 

“Through an organisation-wide process of reflection and analysis of how mainstream models of grant making risk reinforcing existing inequitable structures within the sector and society more widely, we have made a commitment to build a new grant making strategy that is more intentionally focused on racial and social justice. We want to build on our historic commitment to funding smaller organisations, to develop a new approach which is more strategic in how it contributes to long-term systemic social change. 

“A key part of our interim plans to enable this change to our strategy, our current trustees have committed to refresh the board in its entirety over a 12 month period. To this end, we have appointed Cadence Partners to lead on the recruitment process. In this first round, we looking to recruit three trustees to include a chair designate.”

The Trust was endowed on 1 March, 1955 by Sir Godfrey Mitchell with a gift of shares in the construction company George Wimpey Ltd. The founder determined that the trustees of the new trust should be able to use the funds for any charitable purpose.

In 1979 this trust became known as the Tudor Trust, with the trust’s capital now held in a wide range of assets managed in a socially responsible way.

However, the trust’s work has now been put on hold. 

In a follow-up statement, the charity’s trustees wrote: “Recent media coverage has sought to cast our well-publicised change agenda in the context of contemporary public debate.

“No trustees have been dismissed. The decision for the present board to step down comes entirely from the existing trustees and is an exciting opportunity for a new group of trustees to take on the work that the current board has begun. This is a carefully managed period of change and it is of importance to us that the Trust continues to serve communities most in need of its funding going forward.

“The Tudor Trust continues to have strong funding relationships with its existing grant holders and has funding commitments to around 650 organisations across the country. This amounts to around £20m going to good causes every year. These relationships will continue until such time that we are ready to launch a new funding strategy.”