The Broderers’ Charity Trust

Supporting embroidery, education and the City of London

Great embroideries are great works of art.
Embroidery is an English speciality admired and prized across the world.
The Broderers’ Charity Trust is the only charity uniquely devoted to supporting, encouraging and fostering that art.


Who we are

The Worshipful Company of Broderers may be traced back as far as 1331 and was officially incorporated by a Royal Charter in 1561. Today embroidery is more widespread than ever, but there are few professional embroiderers. Consequently, the importance of the Company as a trade association for Broderers has decreased, and has been superseded by the Company’s support for the art of embroidery and embroiderers. This support is channelled through the Broderers’ Charity Trust which, while its Trustees are normally found from within the Company, is an entirely separate legal entity.

The difference that the Charity Trust makes

Since the creation of the Charity Trust, we have made grants to a wide range of organisations and individuals in addition to those shown below, all with the common focus of embroidery. The four pillars of our grant making are:

1. The progression of the craft – ensuring that embroidery remains relevant in the modern day.

2. The preservation of unique and inherently valuable items of embroidery.

3. The education of young people.

4. Encouraging the continuing place of embroidery as part of the social fabric of the nation.

We can only achieve this with your support. The Broderers’ Charity Trust belongs to us all, and all those who choose to support it will be playing their part in securing the future of this wonderful art form.


The Broderers’ Charity Trust – Ancient and Modern

Great embroideries are great works of art. 
The Broderers’ Charity Trust is the only charity uniquely devoted to supporting, encouraging and fostering that art.

C16th crown belonging to the Broderers
C21st replica created using medieval techniques

What the Charity Trust does and why

The Broderers’ Company formed the Broderers’ Charity Trust (BCT) in 1977 to promote charitable giving by the livery. In its grant making, the Trust seeks to maintain the Company’s traditional connection with the art of embroidery and also supports other charities with connections to the City of London. Relevant requests are considered individually by the Trustees and there are five key beneficiary charities who receive regular funding. These are:

The Royal College of Art, where the BCT has co-ordinated the establishment of the Broderers’ Textile Innovation Fund. The fund was established to enable the RCA to acquire new equipment or machinery, support students and researchers with fees, maintenance or research costs, establish new textile and material teaching programmes and complete capital works to create new materials research facilities, studios and workshops. 

The BTIF is used to support students, research, specialist equipment, knowledge exchange and innovation, enabling a significant amount of important work to be undertaken and greatly enhancing the RCA Textiles Programme.

The Royal School of Needlework, The International Centre of Excellence for the Art of Hand Embroidery since 1872. Based at the magnificent Hampton Court Palace, the RSN offers a thriving education programme for every level. They teach at venues across the UK in Exeter, Bristol, Rugby, Durham and Glasgow as well as internationally in Dublin, America and Japan. Their renowned Embroidery Studio expertly restores and conserves valuable and historical embroidered pieces and creates stunning bespoke embroidery for fashion, art and royalty. The Embroiderers’ Guild, which exists to build awareness of stitch and textile art. They educate, encourage, inspire and promote the achievement of excellence.


The Embroiderers’ Guild, which exists to build awareness of stitch and textile art. They educate, encourage, inspire and promote the achievement of excellence.

The Grange, which supports people with disabilities to lead independent and fulfilling lives, learning skills such as embroidery.


Fine Cell Work provides stitching skills to inmates in 32 prisons, giving them an activity of interest and, much more important, embroidery technique that can earn some money and provide employment after release. This is supplemented by the workshop in South London which allows formal qualifications in this art which is in increasing demand in fashion, upholstery and design.


Why support the Broderers’ Charity Trust?

In the United Kingdom, the arts attract very considerable funding, but embroidery does not. A donation to the Broderers’ Charity Trust directly helps a great, but neglected, British art form.

The Trustees can draw on a vast range of experience of embroidery related matters, and are very well positioned to judge when a grant to an organisation will add the most value.

The Trust is unique in what it does; the ‘family’ ethos of the Trust means that every donation is hugely valued and does not get ‘lost in the crowd’ as it might do when given to a larger charity. Every grant made by the Trust is made on the basis of need and the impact that it will make. 

Making a donation

Please donate to the Broderers’ Charity Trust and help us continue our tradition of providing financial support to the ancient craft of embroidery.

Simply complete the form below and return to the Broderers’ Charity Trust, see footer for address details. Making a regular gift to the Trust via Standing Order will help secure our grant making planning into the future.

Donation Form:  Donation_Form.pdf

Leaving a gift in your Will

Leaving a gift in your Will would enable us to maintain our tradition of support for the craft of embroidery.

If you would like to leave a gift in your Will, please speak to your legal advisor.
City and Guilds

For many years the Charity Trust has supported the work of the City and Guilds. The support given is now focused on candidates taking City and Guilds qualifications in the ‘Stitched Textiles’ creative craft family – embroidery, patchwork and quilting. A bursary of £1,000 is available to candidates, and prizes totalling £500 are awarded each year.

The Joint Venture Award

Each year the Broderers’ Charity Trust contributes towards an annual donation that is jointly given by the Associated Companies – the Mercers, Masons, Cooks and Broderers. Every four years the Broderers nominate the charity to whom the Award will be made.

City of London

Support is given to educational charities with links to the City, regularly through prizes and bursaries, and also through support for development projects that schools undertake. Donations are made each year to support the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, to help the homeless in the City, and to support City schools.

The Grange



The Broderers’ Charity Trust
Orchard House, Vicarage Lane, Steeple Ashton, Wiltshire, BA14 6HH


Updated 12 June 2022

Charity number 275080