Our Grants Programme

The Trust focuses on providing funding which could help small organisations pay for various running costs, such as volunteer expenses, training days, equipment maintenance and other core outgoings.

Our funding strategy is to provide long-term core funding for such costs, as we understand that many of the organisations we support depend on unrestricted income in order to meet their operating needs.

Grants are unrestricted and range from £300-£2,000. Successful new applicants can expect to receive a grant at the lower end of this scale.

Applications are considered on the basis of the organisation’s financial position, performance against charitable aims and objectives and the ratio of voluntary income against fundraising expenses

The Trust aims to build long-standing relationships with successful applicants and, subject to an annual review, continue its support over time.

Applicants must be a registered charity with the Charity Commission for England and Wales, the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator or the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland. This does not include Community Interest Companies (CICs).

Charities must have been established for more than one financial year and able to provide a full set of their most recent Annual Report and Accounts, or the equivalent financial information if their annual income is under £25,000.

Arts and heritage

Education and training

Environmental causes and animal welfare


Social welfare


Individual Churches

Hospices or Hospitals

Start-up costs

Project costs

There is no standard application form.

Applications must include:

– cover letter (one to two sides)

– full set of the most recent Annual Report and Accounts

Applicants should demonstrate that they have understood the type of funding which the Trust provides and illustrate how this would benefit their charity on a long-term basis.

All applications should be made in writing and sent by post to the Marsh Charitable Trust, 4 Matthew Parker Street, London, SW1H 9NP.

There is no deadline for applications.

Applications are processed on an on-going basis and a response is usually sent within two months of receipt. However, due to the high volume of applications, occasionally responses to new appeals may take longer.

Upon receipt, applications are divided into two groups, new appeals and renewals, and are given to a monthly grants committee for consideration.

Each application is considered on the basis of the organisation’s financial position, performance against charitable aims and objectives, the ratio of voluntary income against fundraising expenses, and the suitability of the application to the type of funding we provide.

A response is made to every appeal whether it is successful or not.


Highlights works in the inner-city London areas of Hackney and Haringey, areas of poverty and disadvantage, to strengthen the provision of opportunities and services for children and young people. Highlights provides extra-curricular activities for the sake of their social welfare, education and personal development, which aims to support them with their re-engagement in their schools and education to help them to succeed.

Highlights run arts and talent development projects to give creative opportunities to encourage self-esteem and confidence in their own abilities. By running these projects and homework clubs, children and young people that are struggling in an academic environment are able to socialize with others who may be struggling too, helping to reduce isolation. Highlights helps to provide recreational activities as well as education, such as holidays and outings where they previously may not have been able to attend due to disadvantages.

The MCT have supported Highlights since 2020.



Spires is a South London based charity that helps hundreds of homeless and disadvantaged people all year round. They work they achieve aims to improve the quality of life for people who are homeless, insecurely house, unemployed or suffering from the effects of poverty, mental health related issues and loneliness. Spires provides hot meals, clothing and advice throughout the week for those in need.

Spires offers a wide range of help and developmental services through their day centre and outreach sessions. These services include a housing and homelessness space to offer people necessities, a women’s space where females can feel safe, and outreach work. The services that Spires offer provide the vulnerable community with a safe space to feel supported and encouragement to control their lives and gain confidence to build a stable life they will be content with.

The MCT has supported Spires since 2001.


Classics for All

Classics for All supports state schools across the UK, many in areas of socio-economic disadvantage, to introduce or develop the teaching of classical subjects sustainably on the curriculum or as an after school activity. Their support is tailored to each school’s context and requirements.

Classics for All aims to raise the aspirations and build the cultural capital of young people from all backgrounds by teaching them about the ancient world. They support language skills for pupils of all abilities by encouraging a structured approach to grammar and a strong foundation for literacy and learning modern foreign languages. The study of classical subjects helps to encourage cultural insight and awareness by offering pupils new perspectives on contemporary issues.

The MCT has supported Classics for All since 2011.


Canine Partners

Canine Partners transforms the lives of adults with physical disabilities by partnering them
with assistance dogs. These amazing dogs provide their partners with increased
independence and a greater quality of life, offering companionship and practical help with
everyday tasks.
Canine Partners’ assistance dogs are tailor-trained to meet the needs and lifestyles of the
individual they are partnered with, no matter how complex or challenging. A canine partner
helps individuals with tasks which would otherwise be difficult, painful or impossible for them
to perform; such as getting in and out of bed or a wheelchair, dressing and undressing,
retrieving or picking up dropped items, opening and closing doors or fetching help in an
emergency. They also provide psychological and social benefits to their partners, increasing
their social interaction, confidence and motivation, potentially assisting them in returning to
work or further education and reducing reliance on family, friends and carers.

The MCT have supported Canine Partners since 2003.


Down Syndrome International

Down Syndrome International (DSi) is an international disabled people’s organisation, committed to improving quality of life for people with Down Syndrome, promoting their right to be included on a full and equal basis with others. The organisation provides information, support and resources to people with Downs syndrome, their families and carers and the professionals who work with them.

DSi advocates for every child to have access to inclusive and equitable quality education to enhance their opportunities and quality of life that they may not have to chance to get in mainstream schools. This gives people a higher number of employment opportunities that DSi works hard to support and work towards inclusivity. DSi also recognises the importance of inclusive health and advocates that every person should have access to the highest attainable standard of healthcare provision.

The MCT has supported Down Syndrome International since 2021.


Frequently Asked Questions

The Marsh Charitable Trust was established by Brian Marsh OBE with the sum of £75,000. From these beginnings the Trust’s funds have developed and stand today at around £17,000,000.

The Trust’s principle activity is financed by income derived from its investment portfolio, but whenever possible Mr Marsh will make further personal donations. The Trust does not accept any public donations.

The application requirements are a cover letter and a copy of the most recent Annual Report and Accounts. We believe that the application requirements reflect the size of our grants and therefore there is no detailed application form to complete.

Other relevant information is also considered alongside the letter and accounts, but please do not send in a large number of extra documents as there is no need, it will cost you more and it will take longer to process.

If more information is required, we will contact you.

The size of the grants range from £300 to £2,000 with new grantees starting at the lower end of the scale.

Grant sums are decided by the grants committee, but applicants are welcome to request a specific sum. However they should take into consideration the amounts available and remember that new successful applications will receive a grant at the lower end of the scale.

The simple answer is no, you can apply at anytime.

Applications are processed on an on-going basis and you will usually hear from us within 2 months. Sometimes due to the volume of applications we may take a little longer to respond, but it won’t be much longer than that.