Lancaster University

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Bowland Charitable Trust donates £5 Million to Lancaster Uni

02/28/2006 17:09:44

The Bowland Charitable Trust have donated £5million to Lancaster University, without any restrictions on how it should be used. This is believed to be one of the largest unfettered donations in the modern history of UK Universities.

This major gift will be used to develop important research and teaching, which will benefit the wider community in the North West of England.

Vice Chancellor Professor Paul Wellings said: "We are delighted to receive this extraordinarily generous gift from the Bowland Charitable Trust which comes at a time when Lancaster University is positioning itself for the next Research Assessment Exercise, and embarking on several projects which will expand our activities in health, medicine and contemporary arts.”

"Using this donation we expect to launch new initiatives later in 2006."

The Bowland Charitable Trust was set up primarily to fund education projects. In 1994 The Trust made a major donation to Lancaster University towards the building of the Ruskin Library. Described as one of the finest modern buildings in Britain, the Ruskin Library houses the world's foremost collection of art, manuscripts, books and diaries relating to the Victorian art critic and social commentator John Ruskin.

A spokesperson for the Bowland Charitable Trust said: "The Bowland Charitable Trust is very excited to support Lancaster University to engage in a number of initiatives to develop its excellent research capability in new and existing areas".

The funds will be given to Lancaster over a period of five years (£1million per year), starting in August.

Recent external donations to Lancaster University include £500,000 from Lady Joan Smith, The widow of the late Professor Sir Roland Smith, who in 2005 funded a chair in strategic management within Lancaster University's six-star (6*) rated Management School.

This year, Lord Hesketh chose to deposit a rare and valuable book collection at Lancaster University. The collection, housed in the University’s Rare Book Archive, contains books and manuscripts, the earliest of which dates back to the 11th Century, including John James’ Audubon’s illustrated Birds of America and a Shakespeare First Folio.

Lancaster's graduates have together donated a further £1 million to the University as part of its Alumni & Development Programme