About Us

Charles Sykes started his career as a twelve year old office boy, and became a successful businessman in the West Riding knitting wool trade with his own four-storey mill at Princeville, Bradford. He never forgot his roots and pledged that if he ever became wealthy he would help those in distress who had not been as fortunate as himself.

He achieved his life ambition in his eighty-second year when he launched the Charles Sykes Trust on 16 December 1954. He died in 1967 aged ninety-four and his widow Elsie continued his charitable work for which she was awarded the OBE. The Trust was renamed following her death in 1987 in recognition of her considerable contribution.

The original capital sum of the Trust has been increased over the years by substantial donations from various sources including Mr and Mrs Sykes, and prudent investment policies. The Trust is still willing to receive donations, from any person(s) who wish to support good works by leaving a bequest or donating permanent capital, to an active, effective, and prudently run charity. The investment policy of the Trustees is the preservation and enhancement of the real value of the capital and income of the Trust by investment in a well-diversified portfolio of high quality and easily negotiable financial assets. The Charles and Elsie Sykes Trust is an unincorporated association, governed by a Trust Deed and Scheme.

The current Trustees are still mindful of the principles and preferences of Charles and Elsie Sykes in setting their criteria for grant making.

The Charles and Elsie Sykes Trust
Registered Charity Number: 206926

Est. 16 December 1954


David Mead (Chair)

Mr John Ward MBE,  Mrs Sara L Buchan,  Mr R Barry Kay,  Ms Elaine Morrison

Mr Sean Rushton,  Mr David J Leinhardt

Mr Neil Shaw
LCF Law Limited
First Floor, The Exchange, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 1TS

Mrs Helen Hawley
LCF Law Limited
First Floor, The Exchange, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG1 1TS
Email: [email protected]

Mr John Garbutt
DSC Accountants
Tattersall House, East Parade, Harrogate HG1 5LT

HPH Accountants LLP
21 Victoria Avenue, Harrogate, HG1 5RD


The objects of the Charity are to distribute the income of “the Charity Funds”, or any part or parts thereof amongst such Charities and such charitable organisations as the Trustees shall in their absolute discretion select.