The Foundation’s Grants Committee, chaired by Thomas M. Kelly, meets twice a year in advance of the second and fourth quarter Board Meetings to review contributions received for specific campaigns and programs. The committee evaluates the connection each project has to the Foundation’s mission and recommends grants for approval by the full Board of Directors. The map below shows all of Royal Oak’s grants given since the organization’s inception in 1973.

The following grants were among those approved by the Board in 2018.

Chartwell: $1,524,100

Chartwell House

Chartwell House

Chartwell is the former home of Sir Winston Churchill.  The grant will be used to complete the acquisition of the final objects in the Churchill collection, such as the Nobel Prize for Literature and for the wider project that will ensure Churchill’s legacy for future generations at the home loved.

Lake District: $84,795

Stowe, Buckinghamshire

Stowe, Buckinghamshire

The Royal Oak Foundation has established The Grace and Thomas William Thompson Fund to support the work of the National Trust in the English Lake District, particularly property maintenance (especially of stonework) in the traditional style. Land acquisitions of acreage around current Trust properties will also be supported, as well as being used for work that employs local hands-on crafts people or provides on-the-job training for people learning relevant maintenance crafts.

Furniture Research Project: $13,500

The Royal Oak Foundation’s support will help fund an ongoing research project to catalogue approximately 57,000 pieces of furniture in the National Trust collections. Exciting discoveries have been made while adding to the existing wealth of knowledge about some of their most treasured items.

Mount Stewart, County Down

Mount Stewart, County Down

Seaton Delaval Hall: $12,000

This grant will support continued conservation and restoration work at Seaton Delaval Hall. The Delaval family was granted land in Northumbria in 1080 by William the Conqueror. The present house was built in the mid-18th century and was designed by Vanbrugh and acquired by the NT in 2009.


Chinese House at Stowe: $10,000

This grant will support continued conservation and restoration work of The Chinese House, a tiny little folly in the Pheasantry near the Palladian Bridge at Stowe. It is intricately decorated with Chinese scenes, flowers and calligraphy.

Sponsored Projects Initiatives

The Great Dixter Charitable Trust:$47,175

The Great Dixter Charitable Trust provides continuing and expanding stewardship of the house and garden legacy left by Christopher Lloyd. This grant will be used to take on trainees, to carry out training programs and to undertake garden, buildings and curatorial conservation projects.

The Charleston Trust: $2,700

The Charleston Trust is home to an extensive collection of paintings, sculptures and ceramics by the original owners of the house and garden, the artists Duncan Grant and Vanessa Bell. This grant will provide support for the conservation, preservation and maintenance of the house and collection.