Our History

The Clothworkers’ Company has a long history of charitable giving, going back almost 500 years when one of the functions of The Company was to support members who had fallen on hard times. In the 1500s, to fulfil the longstanding object of ‘relief of poverty’, The Company began to pay pensions to members in financial difficulty and, by 1540, it maintained alms houses in locations including the City of London and Islington. The Company has also worked to improve the lives of blind and visually impaired people for at least 300 years.

Over the centuries, as The Company’s wealth increased, and it started to help non-members, but it was not until 1977 that The Company created and endowed The Clothworkers’ Foundation as its primary channel for philanthropy.

THE CLOTHWORKERS' COMPANY TODAYThe Clothworkers’ Company today is a membership organisation that aims to invest a significant amount of its surplus resources in charitable activity, which is now carried out by The Clothworkers’ Foundation.