Perennial Begging

The Gardeners’ Charity is registered with the charity commission as no.1155156 – GARDENERS’ ROYAL BENEVOLENT SOCIETY. Most gardeners know it as ‘Perennial’. As befits a charity that has been helping horticultural workers for over 175 years it has built up some sizable reserves £43m plus 19 premises and two gardens at the last count. Rather a lot of investments to fund annual payments of only £3.6m or circa 80% of annual income from donations, trading and legacies. (Figures for 2016 are awaited.)

Flush with cash reserves and a conservative spending policy, poor gardeners and horticultural workers should be able to feel some comfort. In a recent mailing I was solicited to donate £25, £50 or £100 in addition to supporting the (expensive) product catalogue. This request wont germinate and bear fruit with me until they are more down to earth and do more for the horticultural workers and families.

The objects of the charity are
1.1.1 the relief and assistance by such means as the trustees shall determine to be appropriate in each case of gardeners or persons who are or who have been in like employment or occupation of those closely involved in gardening or related activities or those training to be gardeners or persons of like occupation and their spouses or widows/widowers or unmarried partners and/or immediate dependants in necessitous circumstances or in circumstances of poverty, illness, disability (whether mental or physical) or old age; and /or
1.1.2 the advancement for the public benefit of education and training in or relating to horticulture or gardening; and/or
1.1.3 the provision, maintenance or assistance in the provision and maintenance of gardens and open space for training, rehabilitation and other charitable purposes for public benefit and in particular the preservation and maintenance of gardens of historic and/or aesthetic importance to be enjoyed by and made available to the public at large;This can include debt advice and financial support to people employed in or retired from the horticultural industry who find themselves in difficulties arising from financial difficulties, ill health, disability, or old age.

The charity employed 38 staff and over 200 volunteers at December 2015.


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