Sunday 24 March 2013 6.42pm
I do hope we are seen as active in our local community as you suggest. When I first became a trustee we were giving away 125k per year and this has risen steadily to this year where we will be giving 600k of grants into our own local community. My fellow trustees are an amazing group of local people who have a lot to give to our area.
As one of the oldest charities in Southwark, founded in the reign of Henry VI and given our Royal Charter by Henry VIII we have a serious commitment to supporting local people in Bermondsey and Old Southwark. We own an interesting mix of local assets including our almshouses, pubs, shops and properties, but we are still trying to expand this locally so we can help shape our local area.
Buying a pub may seen strange to some, but it is both a community asset and an investment that funds our grant giving programme. We'd quite like to buy some more if that means we can stop them just being turned into housing at the expense of loss of local meeting spaces. There is probably a better way in which we can develop the housing element but preserve the licensed premises that mean that we can all go somewhere to meet. If any more come on sale then please let us know. We need to stop the loss of our local pubs.
We are just opening our next small grants round - www.ustsc.org.uk - and hope we will get a good submission from local groups who want to run summer events.
I'm particularly please that we're funding scout groups locally and I know that some guide and brownie groups intend to apply - these are some of the groups that receive least support because they're not "fashionable" but which do great work in our local community and in giving local young people a focus.
Cllr Tim McNally
Chair of Finance & Property
United St Saviour's Charity
020 7525 7157
07903 967 809