The Honourable Company of Air Pilots incorporating Air Navigators

The Air Pilots Benevolent Fund

Registered Charity: 212952

 

The Board of Management of the Fund

Captain J P Towell*

Chairman

Squadron Leader J W Davy*    

Treasurer

Captain R B Keegan *

Secretary (& BALPA Benevolent Fund Representative)

Squadron Leader C J Ford

Almoner

Group Captain T Eeles*

 

F P Smiddy Esq *

 

R C Piper*

 

The Master*

Ex Officio

The Master Elect*

Ex Officio

The Clerk*

Ex Officio

R Hardman Esq

SSAFA Forces Help Representative

Air Commodore P Hughesdon

RAF Benevolent Fund Representative

                            

*These members are the Trustees of the Fund

The Executive Committee comprises the Chairman, Treasurer,  Secretary and Almoner

 

The Fund

The Fund was established in 1937 initially as the Sir Sefton Brancker Memorial Benevolent Fund before subsequently becoming the Guild of Air Pilots Benevolent Fund (GAPBF).  Chapter Five of The History of the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators, published in 2010, gives the complete history of the Fund.  In February 2102 the Guild became the Honourable company of Air Pilots and the Fund was renamed The Air Pilots Benevolent Fund (APBF).  The Fund has developed and matured into a healthy and vibrant addition to the Company, with assets sufficient to enable the Trustees to assist many aviators and their dependants.

The APBF is a registered charity and is regulated by the Charity Commission under the Charities Act 2011.  Up to 2002 all Court members were the Trustees of the Fund and nominally responsible for the operation of the Fund, with a separate board undertaking its management, so making it difficult for the Fund to operate effectively for would-be beneficiaries.  Changes in the Court composition had to be notified to the Charity Commission each year; a lengthy and unwieldy process.  In 2002 the Charity Commission published a change in recommended practices that discouraged ‘responsibility without authority’ and the Court devolved the Trusteeship of the Fund to its Board of Management.  This was ratified in 2003 by a revised Scheme that was approved by the Charity Commission with a provision for the Court to appoint Trustees, who now have the authority to run the Benevolent Fund and use the assets with the responsibility to do so in compliance with charity regulations and in accordance with best practice.  Further changes to the Charity Commission’s guidance saw a revision to the way in which new Trustees are appointed.  Prospective Trustees are now approved by the Court but are appointed by the existing Trustees.      Another advantage of the 2003 Scheme is that the Trustees now have much wider powers and can give assistance to young people by funding flying scholarships though the Air Pilots Trust and providing gliding experience through the Livery Schools Link and the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association as well as continuing to help individuals in need.

These powers are derived from the official Objects of the Charity, which are:

  • the relief of poverty of persons who are or have been engaged professionally as Air Pilots or Air Navigators in  Commercial Aviation and who are British Subjects by birth or by naturalisation or who are Liverymen, Upper Freemen or Freemen of the Honourable Company of Air Pilots of London.
  • the relief of poverty and/or advancement of education of the dependants widows and orphans of all such persons as mentioned above.

The Trustees may achieve this by:

  • making grants or loans of money to them; or
  • by providing or paying for goods, services or facilities for them; or
  • making grants of money to other persons or bodies who provide goods, services or facilities for those in need.

Insofar as the income and capital of the charity cannot be applied towards objects as mentioned above it may be applied in supporting such charities established wholly for purposes in the field of aviation or for such charitable purposes connected with aviation as the Trustees shall determine.

The Trustees of the APBF meet quarterly to review cases and decide upon the future expenditure with due regard to funds available and the urgency of the request.  Whilst the granting of assistance necessarily requires deliberation, there are instances where immediate grants may be sanctioned.

Requests for assistance will normally only be accepted when presented upon the 'Application for Financial Assistance' form.  This form should be filled in as comprehensively as possible to enable the Trustees to assess the needs of the individual and get a thorough understanding of their financial status and just how the Fund could best assist.  For immediate assistance where time has an important bearing on the nature of the request, one of the Executive Committee should be contacted through the Company's offices.

To ensure that applicants are given the best possible assistance the Trustees liaise closely with BALPA, the RAF Benevolent Fund, SSAFA, The Royal British Legion, the Officers' Association and similar organisations.  Co-operation such as this ensures that efforts are not duplicated and that the expertise of these full time professional organisations is put into best practice for the Board.  The Trustees can call upon the services of other professionals, such as doctors, to assist in the decision making process, thus ensuring that when assistance is given it will be of long-term use to the individual.

Grants and loans are and can be made to assist in the rehabilitation of people after accidents or enable them to regain licences.  However, the Trustees do not grant or loan money for the repayment of debts or long-term expenses such as school fees, prolonged medical care or for obtaining professional pilots’ licences and ratings.

Over the past ten years the Benevolent Fund has given £415,210 to charitable causes. Of this £73,603 was provided for grants to individuals, the balance being utilised for the charitable purposes mentioned above.  Diligent management of the Fund’s assets has ensured a good return from investments, but as with similar organisations, returns are dependent on the World financial situation.  

Anyone in need of help, or knowing of someone who could be, is encouraged to apply in the first instance on an Application for Assistance Form to the Almoner of the Fund, through the Company offices. For those who feel generous enough to make a donation or require information relating to bequests in wills please contact the Treasurer, also through the Company offices.

 

 

The Fund was established in 1937 initially as the Sir Sefton Brancker Memorial Benevolent Fund before subsequently becoming the Guild of Air Pilots Benevolent Fund (GAPBF).  Chapter Five of The History of the Guild of Air Pilots and Air Navigators, published in 2010, gives the complete history of the Fund.  In February 2102 the Guild became the Honourable company of Air Pilots and the Fund was renamed The Air Pilots Benevolent Fund (APBF).  The Fund has developed and matured into a healthy and vibrant addition to the Company, with assets sufficient to enable the Trustees to assist many aviators and their dependants.

The APBF is a registered charity and is regulated by the Charity Commission under the Charities Act 2011.  Up to 2002 all Court members were the Trustees of the Fund and nominally responsible for the operation of the Fund, with a separate board undertaking its management, so making it difficult for the Fund to operate effectively for would-be beneficiaries.  Changes in the Court composition had to be notified to the Charity Commission each year; a lengthy and unwieldy process.  In 2002 the Charity Commission published a change in recommended practices that discouraged ‘responsibility without authority’ and the Court devolved the Trusteeship of the Fund to its Board of Management.  This was ratified in 2003 by a revised Scheme that was approved by the Charity Commission with a provision for the Court to appoint Trustees, who now have the authority to run the Benevolent Fund and use the assets with the responsibility to do so in compliance with charity regulations and in accordance with best practice.  Another advantage of the new Scheme is that the Trustees now have much wider powers and can give assistance to young people by funding flying scholarships though the Air Pilots Trust and providing gliding experience through the Livery Schools Link and the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association as well as continuing to help individuals in need.

These powers are derived from the official Objects of the Charity, which are:

  • the relief of poverty of persons who are or have been engaged professionally as Air Pilots or Air Navigators in  Commercial Aviation and who are British Subjects by birth or by naturalisation or who are Liverymen, Upper Freemen or Freemen of the Honourable Company of Air Pilots of London.
  • the relief of poverty and/or advancement of education of the dependants widows and orphans of all such persons as mentioned above.

The Trustees may achieve this by:

  • making grants or loans of money to them; or
  • by providing or paying for goods, services or facilities for them; or
  • making grants of money to other persons or bodies who provide goods, services or facilities for those in need.

Insofar as the income and capital of the charity cannot be applied towards objects as mentioned above it may be applied in supporting such charities established wholly for purposes in the field of aviation or for such charitable purposes connected with aviation as the Trustees shall determine.

The Trustees of the APBF meet quarterly to review cases and decide upon the future expenditure with due regard to funds available and the urgency of the request.  Whilst the granting of assistance necessarily requires deliberation, there are instances where immediate grants may be sanctioned.

Requests for assistance will normally only be accepted when presented upon the 'Application for Financial Assistance' form.  This form should be filled in as comprehensively as possible to enable the Trustees to assess the needs of the individual and get a thorough understanding of their financial status and just how the Fund could best assist.  For immediate assistance where time has an important bearing on the nature of the request, one of the Executive Committee should be contacted through the Company's offices.

To ensure that applicants are given the best possible assistance the Trustees liaise closely with BALPA, the RAF Benevolent Fund, SSAFA, The Royal British Legion, the Officers' Association and similar organisations.  Co-operation such as this ensures that efforts are not duplicated and that the expertise of these full time professional organisations is put into best practice for the Board.  The Trustees can call upon the services of other professionals, such as doctors, to assist in the decision making process, thus ensuring that when assistance is given it will be of long-term use to the individual.

Grants and loans are and can be made to assist in the rehabilitation of people after accidents or enable them to regain licences.  However, the Trustees do not grant or loan money for the repayment of debts or long-term expenses such as school fees, prolonged medical care or for obtaining professional pilots’ licences and ratings.

Over the past ten years the Benevolent Fund has given £415,210 to charitable causes. Of this £73,603 was provided for grants to individuals, the balance being utilised for the charitable purposes mentioned above.  Diligent management of the Fund’s assets has ensured a good return from investments, but as with similar organisations, returns are dependent on the World financial situation.  

Anyone in need of help, or knowing of someone who could be, is encouraged to apply in the first instance on an Application for Assistance Form to the Almoner of the Fund, through the Company offices. For those who feel generous enough to make a donation or require information relating to bequests in wills please contact the Treasurer, also through the Company offices.