Our existing funds are invested cautiously, as befits any charity governed by the Charities Commission, and they do realise an amount of interest. It is this interest that is used to provide the funds for the Scholarships, Bursary and Doles. In order to increase our financial support to the various elements, and introduce new ones, we need to increase our capital invested, which will increase the interest received, which in turn can then be used to give away to good causes. The income will always be used to support our projects, whilst retaining and increasing the capital to sustain future giving.
Every £35,000 we can raise will guarantee that we will be capable of making annual grants of £1,200 to individuals in Rotherham.
Any value donation does of course help to achieve our objectives and if you are an individual and a UK taxpayer and are willing to ‘gift aid’ your donation then as a charity we can recover an additional 25% of the value of your gift from HMRC. Each of our awards is given a name and if any donation is sufficiently generous, we are willing to name a scholarship with a name of your choice or even in memory of someone. Also, if anyone would be willing to provide a legacy in their will in favour of the Feoffees we can similarly have a specific memorial award. In the case of a legacy being left then the amount of the legacy can usually be used to mitigate some of the IHT that might be payable. Gifts and donations from corporate organisations can also be set against company tax.
In addition to cash donations of course we would also encourage people and groups to look at novel ways of fundraising on our behalf. These fundraising ideas can be small and simple or larger and more complex. If you can think of ideas in this area please do contact us and see if we can help you take it forward.
Straightforward donations can also be made by using the pro forma that can be downloaded and printed from the link here or if you would be willing to donate more regularly by downloading the form here.
In summary, we would like you to consider donating to Rotherham’s charity for Rotherham folk not only as part of your personal charitable giving but also by other means of raising funds on its behalf.
We ask simply that the charity 'The Common Lands of Rotherham’ governed by the Feoffees, be considered, because:
- It will help more of the old, needy and infirm of Rotherham
- It will help Rotherham’s young people
- It will help Rotherham
- It will make a difference
Your involvement and generosity will help Rotherham’s local charity continue to help Rotherham people.
Qualifying and how to apply for the Doles
Doles are intended to be distributed to those who are aged, needy and/or infirm and are permanent inhabitants of Rotherham.
The basic qualification for the aged element is that applicants need to be 80 years of age or older, and the gift would make a real difference to their quality of life. Applicants who wish to be considered are required to contact the Secretary to the Feoffees, Mrs. Ann Ogley, using the ‘contact us’ part of this web site or e-mail to: email@example.com or telephone, 01709 365032 and ask for Mrs. Ogley. Once approved applicants are sent a card through Royal Mail, during November of each year, informing them that they have qualified for the gift and detailing the date and times of the annual distribution. The Doles are usually distributed around the beginning of December each year in Rotherham Minster. Recipients simply need to bring the card they receive to the Minster on the appointed day to receive their gift, which is given out by The Greave of the Feoffees for that year. Once an applicant has been approved, they will remain on the gift list and continue to receive a confirmation card every year until either they inform us that they no longer wish or need to receive the gift or until, unfortunately, their decease.
For those who are infirm or needy there is no age restriction or qualification. Such recipients are nominated by certain other Rotherham Charities with which we work closely. We rely on these charities to identify people they already know of and help and to nominate them to the Feoffees as people who they consider will be able to make best use of the gift of the Doles. The process of receiving the gift is similar to that described previously in respect of the aged, via card to their home address through the post, although recipients nominated in this manner do not benefit from automatic annual requalification.
Money to fund the Annual Doles Distribution
Over the almost 700 years of the charity’s existence money for the Doles distribution has come from income the Feoffees received. Initially this included rental from properties they owned but it also included bequests and legacies from local people, or their estates, that were included in their will. This has always been an important source of income and this type of donation is still practiced to this day.
Below is a list of some of the individuals who have made bequests to the Feoffees, or left a legacy as part of their will. These bequests are perpetuated but have now been incorporated into the overall Doles gift. Initially certain bequests specified the amount of gift that should be given to a particular number of people; for example, it may have been that a particular bequest stated that 20 people should be given 5 shillings (25p) annually, whilst another required that 6 people should receive 10 shillings (50p) annually. Therefore, there was a disparity in the amounts people received. Some few years ago the Feoffees decided that the amount of the Doles gift should be the same for each recipient. Thus, these original bequests were aggregated such that every recipient now receives the same amount, which in 2018 was set at £50 per recipient
However, these original bequests and their donors, have not been forgotten. The names of some of the donors of the original bequests are recognized each year in the charity’s accounts, which are voluntarily submitted to the Charities Commission, and published, together with the modern equivalent of the value of each bequest. Example of this are given below, taken from a recent set of accounts.
Historical benefactors to the Feoffees charity have included:
C H Moss Bequest | William Gill Bequest | Miss E K Harrop Deceased
Harrop Trust Fund | Frederick Kramer Bequest | Frederick William Stephenson Bequest
Col. Sir C J Stoddart Bequest | Ald. John Dickinson Trust | Robert Bentley Trust - 1850
Henry Purshouse Trust | Mrs. E B Purshouse Trust | Henry Mason Trust
P Badger Trust | David H Fellows Bequest | J H Dickinson Trust
Garrison Bequest | Cowlishaw Bequest | John Aldred’s Gift - 1846
Thomas Badgers Gift | Miss Margaret Raby’s Bequest - 1880
John Kay’s Gift – 1789 | Robert Tunnicliffe -1782 | Robert Heppenstall’s Gift - 1812
Thomas Bagshaw’s Bequest -1842 | Thomas Dickinson’s Gift - 1640
Henry Foljambe – 1699 | Edward Bellamy’s Gift – 1776
John Cutforth’s Gift -1779 | Wooliscroft’s Bequest Mrs. M. Thorpe - 2006
Mrs. M. Cook – 2017
Examples of specific imposition requirements of certain bequests
These donors specified that their bequests were to be allocated to the doles distribution in the following manner.
F W Stephenson Bequest - 1 distribution of £15
Ald. John Dickinson Trust - 3 distributions of £12 each
Henry Purshouse Trust - 5 distributions of £12 each
Robert Bentley Trust - 7 distributions of £8 each
Thomas Bagshaw’s Bequest - 6 distributions of 10s each
Badgers Bequest - 20 distributions of 5s each
Wooliscroft Bequest - 12 distributions of 2s each
These bequests are recorded for historical purposes and the amounts distributed are perpetuated in the current distributions but now every recipient receives exactly the same amount.
As examples ten shillings in 1842 would be the equivalent in value of £56 today and £8 in 1850 would equate to about £1,084 today.
Examples of more recent Benefactors
Over the past 25 years the following major benefactors have given generously to the Charity.
i) Mrs. Shirley Bridges, whose donation enabled the annual Harold Bridges Memorial Scholarship to be established.
ii) Professor, Emeritus, Margaret Bridges, who has, and continues, to supplement the annual Bridges Scholarship.
iii) The former Trustees of Rudston Preparatory School whose donation enabled the Rudston Bursary to be established.
iv) The money raised by the Feoffees has resulted in the establishment of two annual apprenticeship awards.
At the end of this web site can be found the names of Feoffees ‘supporters’; local businesses and organizations who give an annual donation to help with the work of the Feoffees and in so doing perpetuate the Charity, ‘The Common Lands of Rotherham.’
We thank them for their support and, in turn, encourage the people of Rotherham to support them and their businesses in return. You can find out more about each supporter and follow a link to their website (where applicable).
Occasionally individuals are kind enough provide private donations to the Charity and the following have been generous enough so to do.
Mark Garlick Esq.
Dame Julie A Kenny, DBE, DL.
Might you be able to help perpetuate the Charity’s traditions?
These days the entire vast majority of the charity’s money is invested in the financial markets. These investments are managed and controlled by the current Feoffees, with advice from an investment management company. It is the income from these investments that is used each year to both administer the charity and, most importantly, provide the money to fund the Doles and the educational scholarships and Bursaries. The Feoffees are constantly looking for ways to increase the capital invested to provide a greater income and enable more and, hopefully, additional giving to Rotherham people. The Feoffees are all volunteers and none receive any remuneration of any sort from the funds of the charity. Everything the charity receives is put into the investments to enable the charity’s income to increase.
To enable the Feoffees to continue for hundreds more years one area that we are encouraging people to consider is to provide a bequest or leave a legacy in their will, to the benefit of The Common Lands of Rotherham. This would then be invested to increase our annual income and enable more funding to be provided across a number of areas, for the benefit of Rotherham’s inhabitants.
Tax Free Status
The Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham is a Registered Charity (No. 223050) which means that it pays no tax on gifts of money or property made in any person’s lifetime or after their death. Therefore, any and all legacies and bequests left to the Charity are given in their entirety and are not subject to inheritance tax. (IHT). This could also benefit the beneficiary’s estate in that the amount of the legacy is not included in the total amount of the deceased estate, which helps reduce any IHT liability the estate might incur. This kind of giving is fully approved by HMRC.
There are a number of ways that gifts can be given but hereunder are examples the wording that could be used, covering three common areas of giving.
‘I give to the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham (Registered Charity No. 223050) the sum of £xxxxxx (in figures and words) free from all taxes and duties, to be applied to the general purpose (or your preferred area such as a scholarship) of the said Charity and I declare that the receipt of the Greave of the Feoffees or any of the other authorized Feoffees for the time being of the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham shall be good and sufficient discharge to my executors. It is furthermore acknowledged that the intended use indicated is our preference as opposed to an obligation imposed upon the charity’
‘I give to the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham (Registered Charity No. 223050) all [or a percentage or share] of my residuary estate to be applied to the general purpose (or your preferred area such as a scholarship) of the said charity and I declare that the receipt of the Greave of the Feoffees or any of the other authorized Feoffees for the time being of the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham shall be good and sufficient discharge to my executors. It is furthermore acknowledged that the intended use indicated is our preference as opposed to an obligation imposed upon the charity’
‘I give to the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham (Registered Charity No. 223050) my (description of property/chattel) free from all taxes and duties, to be applied to the general purpose (or your preferred area such as a scholarship) of the said Charity and I declare that the receipt of the Greave of the Feoffees or any of the other authorized Feoffees for the time being of the Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham shall be good and sufficient discharge to my executors. It is furthermore acknowledged that the intended use indicated is our preference as opposed to an obligation imposed upon the charity’
Contacts for potential donors, solicitors or executors
If you would like any further assistance or information, or would like to discuss your legacy intentions, please contact the Secretary to the Feoffees, Mrs. Ann Ogley, using the ‘contact us’ form on this website or through our e-mail, which is:
One of the Feoffees will then be nominated to contact you to explain the process in further detail or for confidential discussions.
The Feoffees of the Common Lands of Rotherham will acknowledge and recognize the names of our donors who leave a legacy to the Charity by displaying their name on the website.
Do you buy goods from Amazon? If so you could help the Feoffees at no extra cost to yourself
During the pandemic much more use has been made of ‘on-line’ shopping. One of the main recipients of this has undoubtedly been Amazon. Even under ‘normal’ circumstances Amazon is probably the largest on-line shopping site in the world and its turnover is in the billions. As part of its corporate and social philosophy responsibilities Amazon does give a very small proportion of its sales revenue to charities; but individuals have to nominate the charity they wish to support and its needs to be done by registering and logging in through Amazon Smile.
To do so is very simple and log in is via smile.amazon.co.uk and once registered it is simply a matter of choosing the charity you wish to support. If you would be willing to support Rotherham’s oldest charity then please choose and nominate The Common Lands Of Rotherham. It is available on the Amazon list of charities drop down menu. Whilst it is only a very, very small amount that Amazon donate it becomes significant the more and more people use it and nominate us. There is no extra charge to buyers using this avenue of purchase and if you do not wish to use it then Amazon simply keeps the money and it becomes part of their corporate profit, which of course runs into £billions each year.
So, if you use Amazon anyway, please do consider doing so through smile.amazon.co.uk and in doing so you can help your local charity for Rotherham people.