The origins of the Charity date can be traced back to 1322 when John de Brokenborough established a ‘chantry’ or Trust consisting of private land, the rents from which were to be used to support a priest whose task was to sing Mass for the souls of the founder and his family and all departed Christian souls. The original endowment amounted to 66s 8d (about £3–18p). This formed the original Church Lands Charity as constituted in the Trust Deed of 1457. The income was to be used solely for the maintenance and repair of the parish church in Almondsbury.
In 1892 a new Trust Deed was drawn up and the Church Lands Charity was amalgamated with the charities established by Edward Tirrell (1683), Thomas Jefferis ( 1717) and John Silcox (1741) whose income was to be used to help the poor people of Almondsbury. At this time the capital value was £400, half of which still consisted of land.
In the 1970s the Trustees obtained planning permission for houses to be built on allotments which the Charity owned in Patchway. This coincided with the government decision to widen the A38 and build the flyover near the railway bridge. Consequently, the land was subject to a compulsory purchase order and, after the deduction of legal expenses, the Charity benefited by £150,000.
In the period beginning in the 1950s, following new housing developments, the area changed from one based mainly on farming to one in which many people found employment in the aircraft industry or travelled to work in Bristol. Following the new building, and subsequent increase in population, in 1953 Patchway and more recently Bradley Stoke became parishes in their own right.
In 1976 a new trust deed which widened the possible beneficiaries was agreed and the area of benefit was designated as the parish of Almondsbury as it existed in 1881. In 1997 Almondsbury Church Lands Charity became ALMONDSBURY CHARITY, the name it still retains.
1. Relief in need, relief in sickness, advancement of education, charitable organisations including in its objects the social welfare of the inhabitants within the area of benefit;
2. maintenance and repair of the fabric of the churches within the area of benefit. People helped must live within the Parish of Almondsbury (as defined in 1881) i.e. Almondsbury, Easter Compton, most of Pilning, Patchway and North Bradley Stoke.
Type of help:
Grants up to four figures, depending on need.
Giving in 2006:
Grants worth £20,607 for relief of need etc. and £47,390 to churches.
Must live within the boundary.
How to apply:
Contact Secretary, Mr P Orford, and complete an application form.
Mr Peter Orford
Telephone: 01454 415 346