Lancaster businessman’s trust fund closes after making £880,000 in donations

editorial image

A Lancaster trust fund set up following the death of a city businessman has granted more than £880,000 to local charities and organisations over the last 18 years.

The work of The Galbraith Trust, whch was established in 2001 and has since made a total of 455 grant awards, was celebrated at an event at Lancaster Town Hall recently.

Trustees past and present, and guests - Back row: Sue Parish, Shirley Wilson, Austin Staunton, Kevin Goodall, Gary Rycroft. Front row: Yak Patel,  Peter Crowther, Mayor of Lancaster Coun David Whittaker, Fiona Gordon and Richard Bowker.

Trustees past and present, and guests - Back row: Sue Parish, Shirley Wilson, Austin Staunton, Kevin Goodall, Gary Rycroft. Front row: Yak Patel, Peter Crowther, Mayor of Lancaster Coun David Whittaker, Fiona Gordon and Richard Bowker.

Lancaster hardware businessman Ian Galbraith lived frugally and, after taking on the business established by his father, left his considerable wealth to charity when he died.

Trustees and charity representatives gathered in the Town Hall Banqueting Suite on September 20 to share stories of what they were able to achieve thanks to the Trust, and hear about Ian Galbraith himself.

His executors worked with Lancaster CVS to set up the Trust, which offered grants four times a year to benefit good causes in the district.

The final funding round took place in July of this year.

The Trust’s finale event included speeches from those who had known Ian, and from charities whose work had been helped by the trust, including Carnforth Swimming Pool, and Skerton Community Centre. Grants have helped groups with items such as funding for equipment or transport, or for community festivals and events.

The maximum which could be applied for was £3,000.

Benefitting charities also contributed to the evening – table and room decorations were provided by the Sewing Cafe in Lancaster and a wonderful buffet by the Global Village Cafe.

Investment specialists Sanlam who worked with the Trustees to maximise the trusts resources sponsored drinks, and there was a musical performance by members of Morecambe Brass Band, and a humorous poetic interlude by Andy Whitfield.

Fiona Gordon, who has chaired the Trust throughout its existence, said: “It has been a privilege and a pleasure to be able to distribute Ian’s bequest to a wide range of causes over nearly two decades.

“I am sure he would be pleased to know how much wonderful work his generosity has made possible.

“We are grateful to the Mayor for kindly hosting our event, and to all the many charity representatives who contributed by attending and sharing their experiences.”

The Galbraith Trust was set up to make grants to organisations (not individuals) for any charitable purpose.

The receiving organisations did not need to be registered charities, but the activity for which they sought a grant must be charitable.

The people benefiting from the charitable activity must have lived in Lancaster District (as defined by the boundaries of Lancaster City Council).