Simple questions can unlock millions of pounds for our communities

July 19, 2019

A staggering 66 per cent of wealthy individuals think their professional advisors should be giving them philanthropic advice. But why? And what’s the impact on local charities?

In June 2019, the Community Foundation Tyne and Wear and Northumberland launched a brand new £2 million endowment fund to support charitable activity in Berwick. The fund, which exists in perpetuity, will generate around £100,000 per year for grant-making, to support a wide variety of charitable activities in Berwick and the surrounding area.

To the general public, multi-million-pound gifts can sound like a fairy tale, where hugely generous people do hugely generous things. But the Community Foundation sees philanthropy as something more natural, a 900-year-old habit that is in our DNA, and the key to unlocking this level of philanthropy is simple – we need to talk about it more.

The FB and PFB Lough Fund was established at the Community Foundation with an extremely generous legacy gift from Frank and Pat Lough. They were inspired after speaking to their professional advisors at Greaves West & Ayre (accountants) and Sanderson McCreath & Edney (solicitors), who suggested that a fund at the Community Foundation would be a great way for the couple to leave a gift in their will to support charitable activity, in their local area, for generations to come.

Francis Lough (known as Frank) was born in Berwick in 1923, and Patricia Lough (nee Whinton), was born in 1930 in Devon. Frank went to Berwick Grammar School then joined the RAF.

On leaving the military, he trained as a Chartered accountant in Berwick and married Pat in 1953. Frank’s career took off and the couple were posted around the world before retiring to Berwick and buying a house on Castle Terrace overlooking the River Tweed.

Frank and Pat were heavily involved in the local community, including at Berwick Parish Church, their local school, the local Abbeyfield Society, and the town’s Probus Club.

Sadly, Pat died in 2015, aged 84, and Frank died in January 2018, aged 94. The couple’s legacy lives on at the Community Foundation, where their fund will help ensure that Berwick, and its surrounding area, is a great place to live and work.

Recognising the role of professional advisors in unlocking philanthropic funds for our communities, the Community Foundation has launched a series of films available on its website for professional advisors titled ‘How to speak confidently about philanthropy with your clients’.

Sandra King, chief philanthropy officer at the Community Foundation, explains: “Our message to professional advisors, especially those in the early stages of their career, is that by talking about philanthropy with your clients now, you will make a bigger difference for local charities than if you were to do 50 sponsored runs or charity cake sales.

“Not only is it good for the bottom line, with higher client satisfaction rates and retention rates, but it can also inspire the children of clients to better engage with their firm and keep a family’s business as the wealth changes from generation- to-generation.

“So, let’s start having the conversation now and help unlock funds for our communities.”

Community Foundation Tyne and Wear and Northumberland
The FB and PFB Lough Fund exists to support charitable activity in Northumberland, within a 20-mile radius of Berwick Town Hall, and is currently open for applications until August 5 2019.

To discuss philanthropy advice at the Community Foundation, contact Sandra King on
0191 222 0945 or email:

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