The Fashion & Textile Children’s Trust (FTCT) is a registered charity which provides grants to support the well-being of children, where their parent or carer has a trade connection to the UK fashion and textile industry.  So if you are a parent or carer and you work in retail, manufacture, footwear or soft accessories and your child has a need which you are struggling to meet financially – FTCT is here to help you!

Our story.
FTCT is steeped in a rich and vibrant heritage. Established in 1853 when the UK silk and cotton weaving industry was thriving, a group of textile merchants formed a trust fund to support the bereaved family of one of their colleagues.  Support for the cause grew, and over the years opened up to supporting many more families who worked within the industry. Their good work attracted the attention of supporters including, Charles Dickens who was our Chairman of Appeal in 1856-1857.

In 1866 a small school was opened, near Purley, dedicated to supporting the children of those working in the industry. Opened by the Prince of Wales, later Edward VII, the school thrived and following the First World War a second school was built, which became the Royal Russell School.

The charity was known as the Purley Children’s Trust which sold the school in 1968 when it was recognised that most of the pupils were from outside the industry. Proceeds from the sale were retained by the charity and continued to be used to benefit the children of parents working in the UK fashion and textile industry, through the issuing of grants to support their educational and welfare needs.
Over the years it was recognised that visibility of the charity had decreased and so in 2010, the Trustees agreed to change the name of the charity to the Fashion & Textile Children’s Trust (FTCT) to better reflect the modern day fashion and textile industry and all its related sectors.

Whilst the needs of children have changed over the last 159 years, children today are still affected by illness, bereavement and the financial difficulties of their parents. That’s why the Fashion & Textile Children’s Trust in 2012 is just as relevant as it was in 1853.

So how do we help today?
FTCT offers financial support exclusively to the children of those who work or have worked in any aspect of the UK fashion and textile industry. So if you’re a mum, dad or carer and you work for a fashion retailer, clothing manufacturers, soft furnishings company, or in the head office, call centre or distribution centre of a fashion or textile company, we may be able to help your child, where there is a particular need. Those who are self-employed or run their own business can also apply.

Whether it is providing respite for Hannah, 14yrs, a registered carer for her father, or additional tutoring for Sam, 10yrs, to support with a learning difficulty,  or medical equipment for Asif, 7yrs, struggling to cope with disability, the grants which FTCT provide make a huge difference. Getting help from us is really simple— all you need to do is make the call …

“I am glad I phoned at last, because even though it took me ages to work up the courage to dial, whatever the result, it started the first step.” Mum of Freddie

We are currently working with more than 74 UK companies including, Hobbs, Next, BHS and Arcadia, along with many more independent brands, all of whom are supporting our FTCT outreach campaign. We are proud to be backed by trade organisations including, UKFT, Fashion Association of Britain (FAB), British Interior Textile Association (BITA),Drapers publication and the British Wool Marketing Board.

“Occasionally you come across something truly brilliant that is a spark of hope and goodwill in an often difficult world.  Anna’s team and this wonderful charity seek no funding from the textile industry but quietly they offer support to its workers both present and former.  I hope our industry will consider how this organisation may be useful to their colleagues.”  Bridgette Kelly, British Wool Marketing Board.

If you know someone whose child needs support, please visit or call Anna just to have a chat in confidence on 020-7170-4117 or email

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