THE LEONARD LAITY STOATE CHARITABLE TRUST

 

 

About the Trust

 

 

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Founder
Leonard Laity Stoate
1885 - 1970

 

 

 

History

 

 

In the founder’s day, the background of the Stoate family was one of farming and milling in West Somerset, mainly between Watchet and Williton to the east and Porlock and Selworthy to the West. The family were staunch Methodists; Leonard’s great-grandfather John was one of the founders of Methodism in West Somerset, having heard John Wesley preach in Bristol.
Leonard went into the milling business in Watchet, which successfully relocated to Bristol as Stoate & Sons Ltd after a disastrous fire in 1911. The business was ultimately taken over by Spillers in the 1930’s.
Always philanthropically minded, Leonard founded the trust in 1950, initially as a vehicle through which he could make donations, especially to rural Methodism and to West Somerset causes, but mindful that it would carry on long after his lifetime. The initial trust fund was £20,000, and the annual income about £1,000.
By the end of 1997, through the care of most the founder’s family of one daughter and five sons who acted as trustees, the trust’s assets had risen to about £750,000 with an annual income of £30,000 a year. It was at this point that Leonard’s eldest son Thomas died a bachelor, leaving the bulk of his estate to the trust, boosting it to about £1,780,000 at what was then the height of the stock market. In line with the stock market as a whole, it is at much the same level today, although currently over £2M.

 

 

The Present

 

 

The present life trustees of the trust are now all second generation, being grandchildren of the founder, and representing all the families of the founder’s children. In addition the chairman of the Bristol Methodist District acts as a trustee in an ex officio capacity.
Over the last 50 years the increase in income has enabled the trustees to broaden the scope of grant giving of the trust somewhat. However, it will be clear from the Grant Making Criteria that there is still a strong bias both towards Methodism, and towards the South West of England.

 

 

Financial

 

                (year to 31st March)

 

2017
2,217,000
78,900
70,900
68,320
67,570

2016
1,949,000
76,500
68,300
68,000
94,200*

2015
2,103,000
81,900
73,800
95,500*
73,000

 

£ / annum
Invested funds
Gross income
Net income
Grants awarded
Grants paid

Note: Averaging on a year on year basis, the trustees aim to distribute the whole of the available income. There is normally a discrepancy between grants awarded and grants paid, as there can be a gap of several years between award and payment, whilst fundraising for a project is completed and the project started.
* Includes an exceptional grant of £25,000 to the Horsefair project of the New Room Methodist Centre, Bristol, of which £10,000 was allocated from capital.


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