The Clothworkers' Company
The Clothworkers’ Company was founded in 1528, following a merger of The Fullers’ Company and The Shearmen’s Company. One of the ‘Great Twelve Livery Companies’ of the City of London, our original aim was to promote the craft of clothworking, supervise the training of apprentices and welfare of members, and protect standards of workmanship.
Today, members help us fulfil our civic duties to the City of London, manage our affairs and meet our charitable objectives. Livery members are expected to participate in the living history and traditions of the City – including the election of the Lord Mayor, Sheriffs and Aldermen – and to serve on our Court of Assistants or committees. They invest thousands of voluntary hours each year supporting the governance and management of our affairs. Responsible stewardship of our financial assets – principally based on historic property bequests and investments – has enabled us to pursue ambitious philanthropic goals.
While few members are now involved in The Company’s root trade, we continue to support textiles by funding technical education, skills development, innovative design, the conservation of textiles heritage and craft skills, and much more.
Additionally, The Company has directed a significant amount of our grant making in recent years towards championing good governance and trusteeship, and fostering a more resilient non-profit sector in the UK. We have nurtured a common purpose among members by encouraging them to participate in trusteeship and school governance, supporting the charity sector with their wealth of experience and expertise.
Throughout our long history, we have remained committed to supporting educational and philanthropic initiatives in the Square Mile and beyond. Although we deliver some of our charitable support directly, the primary vehicle for our philanthropy is The Clothworkers’ Foundation (registered charity no. 274100).
Founded in 1977, The Clothworkers' Foundation has awarded grants in excess of £140 million to support people and communities throughout the UK, particularly those facing disadvantage, deprivation and/or discrimination.