Trust fundraising research and bid writing


Abbey Solutions has over 20 years experience in Trust fundraising research and support. Our consultants can develop detailed pipelines and prepare bids to charitable Trusts and Foundations. Our approach is highly focussed. We never just rely on information gathered from a donors’ websites or online directories. We will always make an approach by phone or email in the first instance, to ensure we have the latest information before making an application on your behalf.

We support all areas, from children’s charities through to environmental causes. Our research is backed-up by a database of over 2,000 Trusts and Foundations that are updated monthly.

With offices in Central London, SW London, Glasgow, Cambridge, Belfast and Cardiff and consultants in other parts of the UK we understand the local landscape you are working in. The charities we are working with reflect our nationwide reach and local approach.

Some of the charities we are currently working with include Royal Hospital Chelsea (Home of the Chelsea Pensioners), Waterloo UncoveredBefriend a Child  in Aberdeen,  St Clare Hospice, and Montessori Group. In the past we have supported Amref Health Africa, Mencap, Shelter, lifelites, United Response, Combat Stress  and many more.

“John Abbey’s strategic input was underpinned by a solid understanding of smaller/medium charities. This meant that in addition to strategic advice we also benefited from useful practical advice, such as the development of trust pipelines.”
Campaign for National Parks.


Our success – Raising money from Trusts and Foundations 2020/21

In July 2020 we secured a single donation of £100,000 for a hospice, and a single donation of £120,000 in June 2020 for an ex-service charity. In the recent past we secured a one off grant of nearly £300,000 from a Trust that had never donated such a level of funding before.  This was achieved through detailed research and building a relationship, with two meetings John Abbey attended over a 6 month period.

All the donations secured above were through the research and approach Abbey Solutions’ consultants made. None of them were recurring grants or were known to the charities before.  


Trust research – Our approach

Getting the latest information from Trusts is crucial and this can only be done if you talk to the administrator or Trustees. In our opinion sending out applications without verifying criteria, and having that conversation with the Trust is almost pointless. At best it will reduce the income you will secure. In these uncertain times investments are likely to be squeezed due to economic inactivity, so getting the approach right is critical.


We cannot stress enough the importance of verbal contact. In an age of emailing it makes all the difference, because most people do not do it.  


Our Networks

After 20 years of writing appeals, meeting with Trustees and administrators, law firms and accountancy firms that manage many of the Trusts’ affairs, we have built up strong relationships with most of the large foundations and many of the medium sized Trusts around the country. We have also been recommended by some of the Country’s leading Foundations.

We have unparalleled insight into what donors are looking for and the approach charities should be taking.


What we can do for your charity

We can work with your team to further develop the Trust pipeline, carry out tailored training, or help with developing new appeals. If Trust fundraising is new to your organisation we can become your Trust fundraising team until it’s up and running and you feel confident enough to employ a Trust fundraiser. We can also provide cover during leave or sickness.

What you will always get from us is highly detailed research and clear powerful proposals that tell the story, detail the impact and have the financials to back it up.

Whether you are a large established organisation that wishes to build on the success you already have with Trust fundraising or a smaller charity that wants to access local funds, we will be able to assist you in building a robust and sustainable income stream.


Our services include:

  • Trust/Foundation health check
  • Developing a structured plan with a robust pipeline
  • Develop and write bids, appeals and case for support
  •  Trust fundraising training
  • Recruit experienced trust fundraisers

More about us

Useful Link

Association of Charitable Foundations

Institute of Fundraising