The Leathersellers’ Company and Charitable Fund provides support to businesses that utilise leather as a material as well as individual makers in a range of ways. Please click the tabs below to find out more about grants available, as well as existing partnerships.

Should you have any questions please contact the Grants team at charityapp@leathersellers.co.uk

The Leathersellers’ Company Charitable Fund offers apprenticeship funding of £5,000 – £10,000 per annum for up to three years to support the training and education of aspiring leather craftspeople. We provide these opportunities to sustain vital skills in traditional and contemporary crafts and contribute to excellence in the field of leatherworking in the UK.

Who can apply?
Applications for a grant to support a Leatherworking Apprenticeship should come from the organisation/master who will be training the apprentice. This could be an application to create a new apprenticeship that has not existed before, or for an existing apprentice programme.

To be eligible you must meet these criteria:
– the organisation is a UK-based sole-trader or micro-business (definition as provided by Companies House: turning over less than £632,000, has £316,000 or less on its balance sheet, and has less than 10 employees)
– there is genuine financial need from the employer who cannot access these funds from alternative schemes including those provided by the government
– the apprenticeship will be of benefit to both the apprentice and the organisation
– the apprentice will be aged 18 or over (no upper age limit) and be living and working permanently in the UK
– the apprentice will be paid at at least minimum wage (dependent on age) though we would hope some companies were able to provide the Living Wage to their apprentices, or at least reach that point in a staged way over the course of the apprenticeship (£9.50 per hour)

What do we fund?
We offer grants of between £5,000 – £10,000 per annum, for a maximum of a three-year apprenticeship. This should contribute towards the business’ costs of training the apprentice (where possible to gain recognised qualifications) or the apprentice’s salary.

We want to support excellence in British leatherworking, so we are looking for apprentices to be people planning to utilise their skills and stay in the UK to contribute to the leather industry.

How to apply
All applications must be submitted via the online form available by clicking here.
To assist you in preparing your responses you can also download a word version here (but only applications submitted online will be considered).

Timeline
Applications must be submitted by 5pm on Friday 27th May 2022
These will then be assessed and considered by the Grants team and the Leather Trade Committee.
A decision will be provided by Friday 24th June at the latest. 

Terms of the Grant
Please note that should you be successful in receiving this funding, you will be required to report annually to the Leathersellers against the goals stated in your application. Multi-year funding is paid annually dependent on receipt of a satisfactory report. The Trustees of the Charitable Fund have the discretion to discontinue the award if circumstances require.

Unsure of your eligibility or have any other questions? Please contact Natalia and the Grants team at charityapp@leathersellers.co.uk

The Leathersellers’ Company works closely with Leather UK as the trade association for the UK leather industry. Leather UK is a membership-based organisation with the remit to represent, promote and protect the UK leather industry. Members are provided with support, advice and access to specialised information. Opportunities for communication, networking and collaboration are created. Leather UK protect and promote the identity of leather and strive to promote the future of the leather industry in the UK.

The ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is great, leaving many employees of small businesses across the country concerned about the future of their livelihoods. In such insecure times, some workers in the UK leather industry have found themselves in very difficult financial circumstances, as either a direct impact of COVID-19 or its impact on their families. Leather UK, as the trade association for the UK leather industry, supported by the Leathersellers’ Charitable Fund, established a hardship fund for UK-based leather workers in January 2021. This fund was available to help those in urgent need, by offering one-off financial assistance payments of up to £1,000 towards essential living expenses.

Cockpit Arts is an award-winning social enterprise and the UK’s only business incubator for craftspeople, housing up to 170 small businesses at two centres in central and south London. Since 1986, they have helped thousands of talented makers grow their businesses. The Leathersellers’ Company helped to establish a Leather Manufacturing Hub at the Deptford centre that is furnished with specialist leather-making equipment, and support a number of leather craftspeople at Cockpit with awards each year.