Esmee Fairbairn Foundation

Funding priority

They support work that focuses on Arts, Children & Young People, the Environment, Food and Social Change. Each priority is broken down into further categories – check their website for details.



Type of funder

Charitable trust or foundation

Who can apply

Organisations with annual turnover of over £50,000 doing work that is legally charitable. You'll need to have a minimum of 3 non executive trustees or directors.


1. Organisations with a regular annual turnover of less than £50,000
2. Organisations without at least three non-executive trustees or directors
3. Work that is not legally charitable
4. Work that does not have a direct benefit in the UK
5. Grants to individuals, including student grants or bursaries
6. Capital costs including building work, renovations, and equipment (grants only, they may make social investments for these)
7. Work that is common to many parts of the UK
8. Work that does not set out to have a wider impact beyond the lives of the direct beneficiaries.
9. Research – The Foundation does not fund academic research unless the applicant can demonstrate real potential for practical outcomes.
10. Healthcare with a clinical basis and work which mainly deals with people’s physical health, including medical research, complementary medicine, hospices, counselling and therapy, arts therapy, education about and
treatment for drug and alcohol misuse.
11. Work that is primarily the responsibility of statutory authorities.
12. They will not normally replace or subsidise statutory income although they will make rare exceptions
13. The promotion of religion
14. Animal welfare, zoos, captive breeding and animal rescue centres

Funding Type

  1. One-off
  2. Project
  3. Regular
  4. Running costs

Grant details

Their grants support organisations’ core or project costs, including staff salaries and overheads. 2018 grants ranged from £5k to £1m (average £157,772), with support lasting 1 – 5 years (49% of grants were for 3 years). They also make small grants (£60,000 or less) for one-off projects, or for testing out new ideas and collaborations, but
do not support general running costs at this scale.

Size of grant

  1. Large (£50,000 and up)

Application details

The application process is in two stages. Esmee Fairbairn will acknowledge receipt of your first stage application within a week of receiving it and email you within a month to say whether they would like to take it to a second stage or decline to support it. At second stage, they will make a decision within 2-4 months.

Contact Details


Kings Place
90 York Way

N1 9AG

Telephone Number

020 7812 3700


Search by filter

  • Size of grant you are looking for

  • Region of your work

  • Type of funding

Skip to content