About our grants
School children and their parents in Heaton come together for the 200th anniversary of the Heaton Main Colliery Disaster.
In the last financial year, the Sir James Knott Trust made grants to the value of £2.3m. The Trust funded 355 organisations who went on to support people across Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, Durham and Hartlepool. Reflecting the fact that well over a third of the charity sector in the North East is made up of micro-organisations with no paid staff, the Trust continues to offer small grants (£1,000 or under).
In 2019 we took stock of our approach to grant making. We considered the challenges that the charity sector clearly identified, and we took action. Trustees acknowledge that what many organisations needed was longer term core funding. We therefore cautiously set out to adapt our funding by making larger unrestricted grants over multiple years. We often fund £5,000 per year over 3 years, occasionally fund £15,000 per year over 3 years and rarely fund more than that. The Trust is also willing to make grants for capital and project.
We try to operate in a flexible, light touch manner trusting organisations to put the funding to best effect and not impeding grantees from carrying out the good work they do. We also recognise our funding can be more impactful if we collaborate with other grant makers.
Special consideration is given to charitable activities known to have been of particular interest to Sir James Knott. He was concerned that people could find work and had a safe place to live. He was also keen to ensure that people had the opportunity to congregate. Sir James and Lady Knott, having lost two of their sons in active service in the First World War were drawn to military and maritime good causes.
The Trustees have a wide discretion, however, we do not fund:
• Activity that has already taken place
• Grants to individuals
We do fund faith-based organisations as long as the activity or building that we are funding is open to those of all faiths and none. The Trust makes an annual donation to Northumbria Historic Churches Trust and to the Diocese of Newcastle. Applications for capital contributions should be made to them in the first instance.