The United Charities 2020

The United Charities of Blewbury, Upton and Aston Upthorpe (2020)

The two main functions of The United Charities of the Ancient Parish of Blewbury, Upton and Aston Upthorpe are firstly to help people of all ages, who live in these parishes and who may need financial help and/or may have fallen on hard times and secondly to be responsible for the maintenance of the two alms-houses in Blewbury. The charity has the care and upkeep of the alms-houses in the Church yard which is one source of the charity’s income plus some wise investments from the sale of land gifted to us over the years. We have undertaken and continue to undertake significant investment and improvements in both alms-houses. After advertising in the Village Bulletin, we are very pleased to announce that we appointed a Clerk/Treasurer and a Guardian to support the work of the Charity. This has proved invaluable. An outcome of the global pandemic is that our financial investments are markedly impaired. Unless there is an appreciable recovery, this will seriously affect the financial help we are able to give to others. It may be that we will be seeking support ourselves in order to carry out our key functions.

Whilst the United Charity’s origins date from the 1600’s, it aims to remain current with the needs of those within the villages who may require assistance and also to make everyone aware of the valuable work it does close to home in the community we all share. Anyone needing help, or who knows of someone in need, should get in touch with the Trustees. We also take self-referrals. We are able to give financial gifts to more people than currently request help. It may be that sometimes people are reluctant to ask for help or do not want to be seen as ‘charity’ cases. However, all applications are treated in confidence and are also discretionary.

As well as small monetary gifts at Christmas the Charity is able to help in other circumstances such as assisting with transport costs for frequent hospital visits, breaks for carers, items to help cope with disabilities and many other instances where people are having difficulties paying for essential items such as school uniforms as well as unexpected events. We also provide emotional support and can in many cases give advice on dealing with a range of issues such as finding tradesmen or carers. All applications are at the trustees’ discretion and looked at entirely on a case by case basis. Amounts will vary depending on levels of need.

IF THE TRUSTEES DO NOT KNOW – THEY CANNOT HELP

If anyone wishes to make any type of gift or bequest to the charity to enable us to continue way into the future, that would be most welcome.

The existing trustees are:

Blewbury: Sheila Loy (Chairman), Ann Dendy, Jill Willison, Neil Buckley and Jackie Maguire

Aston Upthorpe: Mike Wigg, Louise Brimacombe.

Upton: Liz Hardy.

Clerk/Treasurer: Hazel Lightowler

Guardian: Diane McKay

All communication: unitedcharities@outlook.com