Changing Lives: 2017-18 Charity Report

Over the last year the Goldsmiths’ Company contributed to charitable and educational activities to benefit society and to support the craft and industry.

"The Goldsmiths’ Company has a long history of contributing to national life. In addition to our work fostering and supporting the craft and trade of the goldsmith, silversmith and jeweller, the Company continues to support charities working across a spectrum of critical issues with particular focus on the areas of prisoner rehabilitation, the ageing population and youth. The Company also supports a wide range of educational projects.

At the start of the decade running up to our 700th Anniversary in 2027, we committed to spending £70m over the following ten years to strengthen the trade we serve and to improve the lives of those in London and around the UK.  We are determined to maintain and develop our ability to bring about “change for good”, and this publication sets out some of the projects with which we are currently involved. We are hugely grateful to our many charity partners for what they do; and proud to be able to work with them."

- The Prime Warden of the Goldsmiths’ Company Michael Prideaux

The purpose of the Goldsmiths' Company is to contribute to British national life by supporting its related crafts, industry and trade and through wider charitable and educational activity. Read our objectives here.


The Charity Committee oversees the majority of the Company’s charitable giving and focuses on three areas: Youth, an Ageing Population, and Prisoner Rehabilitation. Large and small grants are awarded to organisations ranging from those working with young people leaving care; isolated and lonely elderly people in rural localities; and organisations working in the criminal justice system. The following are a selection of some of the initiatives we supported in 2017/18:

Bounce Back Project

Towards the salary of a caseworker to assist young offenders with accessing vital support


Bounce Back is a charity and a social enterprise focussed on the training and employment of ex offenders. Working in several prisons, as well as with London Probation, Bounce Back offers training, work experience and employment to offenders at the end of their sentences, using skills developed both in custody and on release, acting as a ‘bridge’ between prison and full time employment. The project gives ex offenders a chance to visualise a career path, gain confidence, obtain a reference to move on or, in some cases, remain working within the social enterprise.

Bounce Back specialises in delivering accredited trade training in painting and decorating, scaffolding and dry lining. Their current training capacity is 108 people per day across seven different training centres, both inside prisons and in the community. Over the last six years, the charity has supported over 800 participants, with over 60% progressing into employment and with a monitored re-offending rate of just 12%.

Bounce Back participants training on 'live' sites.

The funding provided by the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity has helped support the salary of a specialised caseworker that assists young offenders with accessing the support provided by the Bounce Back Project.

“Perrie, 25, excelled during his time at the Bounce Back dry lining training centre inside HMP Wandsworth, achieving his Level 2 Diploma in dry lining, quickly picking up technical skills and setting himself apart as an outstanding student. He has shown himself to be a model participant and proved his worth as a self-employed decorator within a very short period of time, receiving several nominations for Bounce Back’s ‘Newcomer of the Year’ award at the end of last year.”

Link Age Southwark

£15,000 a year for three years towards core costs of a Befriending Service


Link Age Southwark is a vibrant local charity providing friendly volunteer support to over 600 isolated, older people in Southwark. The charity has been working in Southwark for 25 years, reducing loneliness and isolation and helping older people maintain active lives within the community.

Its team of volunteers support older people to thrive in later life through one-to-one befriending visits; activity groups with volunteer transport; practical support including light gardening and help with odd jobs; and intergenerational work with local schools. Link Age Southwark’s services are free to all Southwark residents aged 60+, and the scheme also offers specialist free support services for people of any age living with mild to moderate dementia. The funding from the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity will enable Link Age Southwark to cover the core costs of its Befriending Service for three years.

“We are so grateful to the funding that Goldsmiths’ Company Charity has granted Link Age Southwark. As a result, we have been able to increase the number of befriending of lonely and isolated over 60 year olds in Southwark over the past year to 141 matches, as well as providing befriending services to 39 people in the earliest stages of dementia.” - Ruth Driscoll, Director, Link Age Southwark

Feeding Britain

£30,000 a year for three years towards the salary of a National Director


Feeding Britain is a national food poverty charity, set up to alleviate and eliminate hunger. Feeding Britain works with a number of partners, as diverse as food banks and local community food organisations, politicians and companies to achieve three main aims: establishing and supporting local pilots, building a national network and national policy reform.

Frank Field MP with feeding Birkenhead at the site of the new Citizens Supermarket. Image: Feeding B

Feeding Britain Holiday food and fun clubs

Funding from the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity has enabled Feeding Britain to establish 12 local pilots across the UK, and develop innovative solutions and projects to help end hunger, ranging from holiday clubs to social supermarkets. In 2017 they delivered holiday food and fun clubs that provided 43,314 meals to over 7,920 individuals. They have since scaled up their work up to support 79 clubs across nine regions, reaching over 27,000 individuals.

“The Goldsmiths’ Company Charity has supported Feeding Britain since we were first created. As a new charity, core funding is so important and the Goldsmiths’ Company has been very forward thinking and flexible in helping us build a movement and tackle some of the most pressing root causes of hunger in the UK.” - Rosie Oglesby, Feeding Britain National Director


To help young people facing homelessness


Pathway works to improve healthcare for homeless people. The charity has helped eleven NHS hospitals across England to create teams of doctors, nurses and social care professionals, supporting over 3,500 homeless patients every year. Many teams include people who were homeless in the past, who have re-trained to work with Pathway as 'Care Navigators'.

Resilient 1 is an entirely new, charity-led partnership project working to create a specialist and evidence-based homeless-prevention programme, to benefit vulnerable 16-18 year-olds during extended periods of in-patient care and education at NHS Adolescent Mental Health Units. The project targets young people at risk of becoming homeless, or living in unstable conditions of poverty and stress, following their discharge. They include young people who have grown up in children's homes and foster care, those from troubled families, and those who were homeless at the point of admission.

Pathway Resilient Care Navigators. Image: Pathway Resilient

Pathway UCLH Team

The programme has been designed to develop their capacity to cope with five harmful stressors that cause homelessness, and to help them transition safely into their early adult lives and is a unique collaboration between young people with mental illness and lived experience of childhood trauma and deprivation; the specialist clinicians and teachers of an NHS Adolescent Mental Health Unit in North London; former in-patients at Child & Adolescent Mental Health Units who went on to become homeless; a leading specialist research unit; and an Oscar-winning team of filmmakers (working on a pro bono basis).

The Goldsmiths' Company Charity part-funded the creation of the two core resources - a short film and a targeted resilience-building curriculum that interacts closely with the film - as well as a study into the project’s effectiveness, by the Evidence Based Practice Unit (UCL Brain Sciences/Anna Freud Centre).


The Goldsmiths' Company has continuously supported charitable work in education since the sixteenth century. Each year the Education Committee awards and administers grants to organisations with reach and impact, particularly those within the STEM and literacy areas and considered by the Committee to be most deserving of assistance or encouragement. The following are a selection of some of the initiatives we supported in 2017/18:

1851 Trust: Raspberry Pi Competition

To support a road show to promote the competition in deprived areas


Raspberry Pi is a national competition for young people of different age groups involved in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects to inspire the next generation of engineers and technologists. It is run by PA Consulting on behalf of the 1851 Trust, an innovative education charity committed to inspiring young people to become innovators of the future and stewards of the environment.

Students participating in the PA Consulting Raspberry Pi competition

Established in 2012, the competition gives teams of students as young as eight years old the opportunity to gain hands-on experience of computer programming and engineering – valuable skills that are in increasing demand. Some winners from previous years have used their prize money to invest in new innovations and gone on to achieve commercial success.

The grant from the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity supported one of 14 road shows to take place around the UK. The road show included a PA Raspberry Pi-based workshop that engaged students in putting their problem-solving credentials and collaboration skills to the test in PA’s ‘code-cracking’ Enigma activity while encouraging them to develop innovative products in a collaborative way.

Raspberry Pi Competition Website

Goldsmiths College: Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art

£215,000 over three years towards the funding of an Education Curator


For more than 200 years, generations of students have received an education on the site now occupied by Goldsmiths College. In 1792 the Counter Hill Academy opened its doors in New Cross. Nearly a century later, The Goldsmiths’ Company acquired the school and reopened it in 1891 as The Goldsmiths’ Company’s Technical and Recreative Institute.

In 1904, the Company gifted the Institute to the University of London on the condition that the buildings should always be used for educational purposes and it was re-named Goldsmiths College. The special connection with the Goldsmiths’ Company continues to the present day.

The Goldsmiths’ Company Charity’s most recent grant in 2018 will fund the post of Education Curator over three years to oversee community engagement at the college’s new Centre for Contemporary Art, a new public art gallery that includes eight diverse exhibition areas and 1000m² of education space.

Website: Goldsmiths' Centre for Contemporary Art

Architects model of the new Goldsmiths Centre for Contemporary Art. Image: Goldsmiths College

Winchester Science Centre and Planetarium

£10,000 a year for three years to run a pilot STEM programme in Southampton


Winchester Science Centre is an independent educational charity with a strategic vision of sparking curiosity and mission to build science capital for all.

The Science Centre currently attracts over 180,000 visitors per year and a further 30,000 people through outreach. The Science Centre knows from its national research and audience development plan that there are sectors of the community who do not engage and are missing out on the opportunities that science provides. The charity has identified six priority areas, those that do not engage with Winchester Science Centre whose schools have low STEM attainment, post-16 STEM take-up and high pupil premium.

Pop up Science Centre’ at Westquay Shopping Centre, Southampton. Image: Winchester Science Centre

Funding from The Goldsmiths’ Company Charity has enabled the charity to run a pilot programme in the priority area in Southampton, working with two feeder primary schools for a priority secondary school. The pilot included informal STEM experiences provided within the schools for the pupils and their families at pre-arranged pupil/parent events followed by a community pop-up science centre in a local shopping centre that many of these families attended. Through this work the Science Centre has been able to establish an outreach programme for both schools that is welcomed by schools and families that will commence in September 2018 and include formal workshops in school followed by a free school visit to Winchester Science Centre.

Engineering UK: Big Bang Fair

To fund eleven schools to attend the Big Bang competition finals in the UK and six students to compete at the Intel International Science Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh


The Big Bang Fair takes place every year in March, and through a series of regional, local events and at school events, Engineering UK works with partner organisations across business and industry, government and academia to try and give young people (primarily aged 7 -19) a flavour of the real scale and diversity of engineering and science in the UK.

The grant from the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity enabled Engineering UK to fully fund travel and accommodation costs to the UK Fair for up to 100 young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and provided funding for the competing teams at the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair in Pittsburgh, USA. 

“Without the generous support of the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity, we would not have been able to send our Big Bang Competition winners to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in the USA, at which their projects were announced as 3rd and 4th in the world within their respective categories.” - Phillip McShane, Head of The Big Bang Programme

Big Bang Fair Website

Support for the Craft

The Goldsmiths’ Company plays an important role in support of the craft and industry, funding apprenticeships and assisting with the technical training of aspiring craftsmen. The Company’s Charity funds the Goldsmiths’ Centre, a unique community in the heart of Clerkenwell that provides training and workspace for goldsmiths, silversmiths and the allied industries with an annual grant: currently c£1.6m. The following are a selection of some of the initiatives supported in 2017/18:

The Goldsmiths’ Centre: Collaborative Funding Programme

To deliver the Goldsmiths’ Company’s support for the craft through trade and industry collaborations and partnerships


The Goldsmiths’ Centre Collaborative Funding Programme formally launched in June 2017. This Goldsmiths’ Company Charity fund, managed by the Trustees of the Goldsmiths’ Centre, seeks to reinforce the Company’s leadership role in supporting collaboration and partnerships across the craft, trade and industry. Funds are being made available for projects that meet the charitable objectives of the Centre and Goldsmiths’ Company and reinforce work in this area across the UK. These include for 2017/18 The Contemporary British Silversmiths National Skills Training Programme, Studio Internship Graduate Award and World Skills.

Contemporary British Silversmiths: National Skills Training Programme

To set up and deliver a series of industry-led mid career training modules


In 2017/18, Contemporary British Silversmiths, the leading association promoting contemporary silver, announced an innovative national skills training programme to promote excellence in British silversmithing skills and preserve making skills for future generations by facilitating professional development opportunities at key stages in a craftsperson’s career.

The Trustees of the Goldsmiths’ Centre provided a grant to enable Contemporary British Silversmiths to develop its programme and deliver the first year of a proposed three-year programme of training around the United Kingdom.

Contemporary British Silversmiths Skills Training Programme.

The five courses developed and delivered in the first year were: Raising of a Seamed Vessel, and Asymmetric Raising, in North Wales with Tony Bedford; Flatware Forging in Sheffield with Brett Payne; Precision Box-Making in Birmingham with Ray Walton; and Introduction to Hammer Work Skills for graduate silversmiths with Abigail Brown and Rauni Higson at the Goldsmiths’ Centre.

The Goldsmiths’ Centre: World Skills Competition

Support to enable Goldsmiths’ Company apprentice Alexander Wood to represent the UK at 44th World Skills event in Abu Dhabi including intensive training, mentoring, travel and accommodation costs.

The 44th edition of the world’s leading vocational education and skills excellence competition, was held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre from 14-19 October 2017, bringing together 1,000 apprentices and students from 70 countries, all vying for the top spot in a particular vocational field.

In 2017/18, the Goldsmiths’ Centre funded the training and costs for Goldsmiths’ Company apprentice Alexander Wood to represent the UK at the WorldSkills event. He went on to receive a Medallion of Excellence for reaching the international standard in the Jewellery skills category and came 7th in the world out of 17 competitors.

The Goldsmiths’ Centre: Studio Internship Graduate Award

To support two silversmiths through placements to enhance their training


Available to career silversmiths and selected students, the Studio Internship Graduate Award (SIGA) is open to two graduates within five years of graduation to support the next generation of silversmiths. The award offers the opportunity to train with the country’s leading silversmiths for 16 weeks, which can be undertaken on a part time basis, before creating an exhibition of work at the Goldsmiths’ Centre. On completion, a certificate is awarded at a special ceremony at Goldsmiths’ Hall. The recipients of the SIGA Award for 2017 were graduate silversmiths Manasi Depala and Hazel Thorn.

Box by Manasi Depala

Rauni Higson with Hazel Thorn

Manasi Depala studied at the Bishopsland Educational Trust and used her placements with Ray Walton, Angela Cork and Rod Kelly to push the boundaries of her technical skills. Hazel Thorn similarly used her placements with Adrian Hope, Rauni Higson and Mary Ann Simmons to advance her skillset.

Studio Internship Graduate Award

Other Donations

St Paul’s Cathedral: Equal Access Project

Towards a major structural project to improve disabled access to the Cathedral through the North door.


With 24 steps to the main west doors alone, the Cathedral presents significant access challenges for wheelchair users and people with other mobility needs. With the support of the Goldsmiths’ Company Charity and other supporters, St Paul’s has embarked on a £3 million project to create a permanent stone ramp on the north side of the building - providing equal access to St Paul’s education and heritage, and enabling the Cathedral to become truly a place for all people all of the time.

The project will be substantially built by specialist heritage metalworkers and stonemasons and the new entrance will open in summer 2020.

Quote: The Revd Dr David Ison, Dean of St Paul’s

“St Paul's is here for everyone, and ensuring that all our visitors can access the building easily and with dignity is hugely important - we're delighted to be partnering with the Goldsmiths’ Company to make this vision a reality.”

National Maritime Museum Greenwich Cutty Sark: Gilding the ‘Gingerbread’

To restore the decorative gold leaf carvings on the exterior for the Ship’s 150th anniversary in 2019


The ornate scrollwork that adorns the stern and bow of the Cutty Sark is known - in maritime parlance - as the 'gingerbread' of the ship and is an important part of its character and story. Great care and attention was paid to the decorative designs that adorned vessels, to promote the ship owner's business, enhance its reputation and make it distinctive in appearance when in busy docks.

The Goldsmiths’ Company Charity provided a grant to fund the appointment of a specialist external contractor to remove the gingerbread from the stern and bow of the Cutty Sark to facilitate vital repairs and apply 23.5ct gold leaf under controlled environmental conditions.

The Cutty Sark

Nelson’s Chelengk & Silver

Towards the display and security costs of showing Nelson’s Chelengk & Silver at Goldsmiths’ Hall


Nelson’s Chelengk was one of the most iconic pieces of jewellery in British history. The turban/hat ornament, a plume of more than 300 diamonds, was one of Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson’s most treasured possessions. The piece was stolen more than half a century ago, and a replica has recently been recreated by Philip Denyer using original drawings of Nelson's lost Chelengk.

The exhibition held at Goldsmiths’ Hall re-united over twenty pieces from Nelson’s dinner services, many for the first time in two centuries. These were displayed alongside Rundell’s original estimate and bill of sale for the Nile Service. The replica of the Chelengk was shown on a replica naval hat made to Nelson’s original specifications by his hatters Lock & Co. of St James’s. Listen to the Podcast from a evening in conversation with Philip Denyer, Joanna Hardy and Martyn Downer.

Nelson's Chelengk. Replica made by Martin Downer.

Martyn Downer discussing the jewel at Goldsmiths' Hall

The British Museum: The Royal Tudor Salt

To fund an international conference and publication to highlight the history of the Clock Salt


One of the greatest treasures of the Goldsmiths’ Company Collection the Clock Salt was made in Paris around 1530-35 by the royal goldsmith, Pierre Mangot and was probably a diplomatic gift from King Francis I of France to King Henry VIII of England, or between two of their courtiers. Of the 11 clock salts listed in Henry’s collection after his death, only this one survives. 

The Salt was loaned by the Goldsmiths’ Company to the Waddesdon Bequest Gallery at the British Museum in February 2018. The timing of this loan was planned to allow the display to dovetail with the exhibition of a famous set of Renaissance silver known as the Aldobrandini Tazze at Waddesdon Manor, sponsored by the Rothschild Foundation.

The Goldsmiths’ Company, in collaboration with the British Museum and the Rothschild Foundation will present a corresponding international conference celebrating the Royal Clock Salt to highlight the object’s history, its attribution and the modifications it has undergone, following scientific research conducted by the British Museum.

Clock Salt at the British Museum

Clock Salt. Image: Richard Valencia