Livery Liaison Scheme

All Members of the Leathersellers’ Company are encouraged to participate in the Livery Liaison Scheme.

The Livery Liaison scheme enables our charitable giving to have a public and friendly face. It allows the Company to develop a deep, personal understanding of the work done by the individual charities we support, and of the beneficial impact they have on the people they serve. As part of the Livery Liaison Scheme, our Liverymen and Freemen visit charities right across the UK, taking their time to learn about the work being achieved, meeting staff and clients and, on occasions, throwing themselves into the work of the charity, whether it be spending time in the remote Scottish Highlands, or boarding a tall ship as it sails up the Thames.

The charities we fund hugely appreciate the additional support that is offered through the Livery Liaison Scheme and we would like every charity we fund with a Main Grant to have their own Livery Liaison.

As a Livery Liaison your primary role is to be a supportive, friendly face of the Company.  Beyond conditional grant reporting requirements, it is rare for charities to have much of a relationship with their funder once a grant has been awarded. We pride ourselves on funding in an holistic way, giving more than just money. We also offer support, advice and networking opportunities to the charities we support.

We ask our Livery Liaisons to visit their charity once or twice a year. This could be an organised tour, attending an event at the charity or just dropping by for a cup of tea and a catch up. You are not there to conduct a grant assessment, but to gain a deeper understanding of their work and perhaps offer them advice or guidance. After conducting a visit you should report back to us by emailing a report to Lynne Smith in the Charity Department.

Once a year we will invite a representative of every charity in receipt of a Main Grant to our Charities Reception. This is an outstanding networking opportunity for our charities to network with each other, training providers, other funders and members of the Company. Ideally, their Livery Liaison will also attend the Charities Reception and so be able to welcome them to our Hall and facilitate introductions.

We would like every charity in receipt of a Main Grant to have a Livery Liaison. Below is a list of all the charities we are funding that still require a Livery Liaison. Click on the charity name to be taken to their website where you can learn more about the work they do. If you are considering becoming a Livery Liaison and require further information and advice please contact Richard Chard / mobile 07890 070179.

If you would like to be the Livery Liaison for one of the charities listed below, please email Lynne Smith ( who will let you know if it is still available.



Hounslow and Richmond

Founded in 1993, INS works within the boroughs of Hounslow and Richmond to support adults with any type of neuro disability (Parkinsons, Multiple Sclerosis, stroke injuries etc…) and offers them rehabilitation, therapy, social and emotional support to improve their life quality, reduce their sense of isolation and strengthen their overall health levels.  Working from a rented building in Twickenham (containing a specialised gym, garden and therapy rooms) INS achieve this by employing a multi-disciplinary team of physiotherapists, occupational / speech therapists, counsellors and social workers.


Manchester Young Lives (MYL) is a youth charity providing after school clubs, play schemes, evening and weekend youth provision all year round. The charity runs an Independent Special Day School for 60 young people excluded from mainstream education. The organisation’s guiding principal is that all young people can learn, make progress and achieve given the right support and opportunities. Centres are located in some of the most deprived areas of Manchester.


PTMWA is a women-led organisation whose vision is to ensure that people, suffering, or at risk of domestic abuse receive appropriate support. The aim is to reduce risk and increase safety to children and families across Manchester.


Sefton O.P.E.R.A. is a “doorstep” service for older people, who often feel neglected, afraid to go out, and who may have health issues, which they cannot always address. Giving older people the opportunity to have contact with other people, make new friends or just gain more confidence in themselves whilst at the same time as taking part in one of O.P.E.R.A. activities.


TLC is an independent Greater Manchester relationships charity. They deliver a range of integrated support programmes which help improve emotional wellbeing and ensure safe, healthy and happy relationships. Their integrated support is unique and provides an innovative and creative offer to both the people they work with and the communities in which they live. Services are delivered to individuals, couples, families and communities.

Rotherhithe, London

The aim of Treasures Foundation is to help former female addicts to find the treasures in themselves preparing them for rich, fulfilling lives through supported accommodation.

After conducting a Livery Liaison Visit you need to report back to the Charity Department by completing the  Livery Liaison Scheme Charity Review Form  or writing a report such as the one below:


Livery visit by James Barrow to Ambitious College (specialist further education for young adults with autism) on Tuesday, 11th October 2016

Organised through Julia Lampard, their Project & Funding Manager, I visited Ambitious College’s recently opened North London campus in Tottenham, which is co-located within a mainstream FE college (co-location is clearly a successful model as it gives them access to a wide range of mainstream vocational learning, social interaction and work experience). They have recently opened another campus in West London and aspirations to open another in East London.

The inspiration behind Ambitious College was the 90-pupil TreeHouse School in Muswell Hill, founded by a group of parents in 1997 for primary and secondary school children with complex autism. This is an opportunity to give some of these pupils 3 years of further education (up to the age of 25).

Julia and the Vice Principal, Linda Looney, and a recently appointed co-VP gave me a very friendly and informative tour of the campus. The plan was to spend 10 minutes with Linda but she generously gave her time throughout the 2-hour visit.

The campus only opened in July and is very impressive. I was amazed how smoothly it was running, considering it had recently opened, but an acorn had been sown in 2014 on a much smaller scale and the roll-out has clearly been very successful.

Believe it not, when 1 in 100 people have autism (800,000 people in the UK), Ambitious is London’s first and only specialist day college. Although autism covers a wide spectrum of disabilities, there are fewer than 1 in 4 young people with autism able to access any form of post-school education.

The mantra that “if you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism” explains the need for a wide range of intensive specialist education and support. The challenge is huge – 90% of adults with autism currently remain entirely dependent on their families or ‘care’ and only 15% are in full-time employment.

The “learners” generally have 1, 2 or even 3 support staff with them at all times; the number of staff is twice the 49 learners on the campus. Full capacity of learners is 65. The place was buzzing with activity, with an array of learners, teachers, support staff, occupational therapists, behaviour analysts, speech therapists and admin staff.

Ambitious has grown into a £10m turnover education service, of which £1.2m is funded from voluntary income, the remainder by local authorities who are able to fund individuals in their boroughs at an average cost of £60k per annum. Funding is unsurprisingly limited.

The Livery funds £15k p.a. for 4 years (now in our 2nd year) that helps to pay for staff salaries. They hope to get to a critical mass whereby they can be self-funded by 2019-20. There may be a further need to fund from voluntary sources before then.

Opportunity for Livery to help – does anyone know of any employers who can offer work placements in London? GlaxoSmithKline has recently offered places that are supported initially with specialist outplacement staff.


1. Who can be a Livery Liaison?

All members of the Livery and Freedom, and their partners, can participate in the scheme.

2. What time commitment will be expected of a Livery Liaison?

You will be expected to visit your charity once or twice a year at a time that suits you. This could be attending an evening event they are putting on, a tour of the charity or dropping by for a cup of tea and a catch up.

3. How do I become a Livery Liaison?

Read through the list of available charities and email Lynne Smith your preferred choice. We will confirm if it is still free and send you all the relevant information.

4. Then what?

Email or call the charity contact to introduce yourself and arrange your first visit. Ask to be put on their invite list for any special events they may have coming up.

5. Can I have a copy of their application form and their latest grant report and accounts?

This is unnecessary. We will let you know in broad terms what we are funding, but you are not there to assess their grant.

6. Do I need to tell you before I visit my charity?

You do not have to, but if you put in a quick call or email to us we can let you know if there are any messages to pass on such as “We have not had their RSVP to the Charities Reception” or to remind them to submit their grant report.

7. My charity wants more money or to change the terms of the grant, what do I say?

Many charities will be nervous to officially ask for changes to their grant, but will hopefully be more at ease to mention it to their Livery Liaison. You cannot promise them anything, but do talk it through with them and report back to us. We will consider all requests of this kind, although we would rarely increase a grant midterm.

 8. My charity have asked me to judge / present an award?  

Our charities love VIP visits and may ask you to perform some official duties. Don’t be shy, get some photos and don’t forget to mention Leathersellers in any speech.

1. Date of the visit

This should be mutually convenient and confirmed by both parties.  It is a friendly visit to put a face to the grant money or ‘a catch up’ since the previous year.  If anything is unclear prior to the visit, please contact the office (0207 330 1444) and they will put you in touch with a member of the Working Group who made the initial visit to the charity.

2. Dress

Suitably casual, so as to fit in with the charity.

3. Expenses

The company can reimburse you for reasonable travel expenses should you require it.

4. Website

Familiarize yourself with the charity and check for up to date projects or changes before you go.  The Charities Department (0207 330 1452) will forward the charities annual report to you, so be aware that this may be coming and update yourself on what’s been going on.

5. Grant Detail

The Charities Department can also send you a print out with details of our grant and the charity project.  You may already have one from when you signed up as a Liaison.

6. Questions

Rarely will they ask you something that you cannot answer, but if this happens, take a note and say you will find out for them.  Don’t forget to follow through with help from the Charities Department who can route queries to Committee members if appropriate.

7. FSI (Foundation for social improvement)

Charities with a turnover of less than 1 million are eligible for help/advice, so it is worth suggesting that they approach the FSI, who we work with closely, if the charity is struggling in a particular area. See for details of their work.

8. Charity Reception

Always worth a mention, stressing the networking opportunities and other funders that will be there.  Make sure that you know the date of the next reception.

9. Report

Completing the report form is not always necessary if all is going well.  An email from you with the charity name and date of visit stating that all is well will suffice.  However, if you have any concerns, no matter how small, they are worth noting so that the Charities Department can bear them in mind when the charity sends in their annual report.

10. Photos
Where appropriate (and more importantly with the permission of the charity), do send in photos of your visit for the Leathersellers’ website.