Joanna Rettie

Chairman’s Message
From Joanna Rettie

The Trust is an independent charity that has been in operation since 2002, as part of the legal arrangements between West Sussex County Council, Crawley Borough Council and Gatwick Airport Limited. It has supported over 2,000 local community organisations and awarded well over £2million in grants.

Grants are awarded annually for such charitable purposes as the Trustees determine within the area of benefit defined in the Trust Deed. This covers parts of East and West Sussex, Surrey and Kent. They adopt strict criteria and channel funds to deserving projects, particularly in those areas where people are directly affected by operations at Gatwick Airport.

We encourage and support schemes that benefit diverse sections of the local community and are targeted towards the development of young people, the arts, sporting facilities, environmental improvement and conservation, improvements to community facilities and volunteering, the elderly and the disabled.

Applications for grants are assessed by a board of nine trustees who all bring local knowledge and expertise to the Trust ensuring that the money is used to the maximum benefit of the local community. Our independence means we have wide discretion in how we decide to spend our funds.

Each year a number of grants are awarded subject to certain conditions being met such as planning permission or further promises of funding and each year trustees follow-up a number of projects to ensure grants have been applied correctly.

The demand for grants is always far greater than the funds available and grants made to previous applicants will be taken into account. We are always keen to hear from first time applicants. The normal level of grants is from £1,000 to £5,000. Occasional larger grants may be considered if the impact is targeted to benefit a significant number of people and is considered to make a valuable and noticeable difference longer term. Applicants should seek advice from the Trust BEFORE applying for a larger grant.

I would urge all potential applicants to read our latest Grant Guidelines for clear and detailed information on our present approach to awarding grants.

If this is the first time you have looked at the website, I hope you will find the content interesting and informative. You will find details of the Trustees, a map of the area of benefit, examples of projects and the Trust's Annual Report and Accounts.

Joanna Rettie Chairman