Bhutan Society Trust Fund

The Bhutan Society Trust Fund is a charity established by Trust Deed on 15th September 1994 and its income is to be applied to 'the relief of the poor, handicapped and the sick in the Kingdom of Bhutan; the advancement of education and religion in the Kingdom of Bhutan; and other charitable purposes for the benefit of persons being citizens of the Kingdom of Bhutan'.

The original fundraising target of the Trust was to accumulate an Endowment Fund of £50,000, the income from which would be used annually for disbursement for the stated charitable aims. Fundraising events, private donations and investment income helped the Trust reach and substantially pass this target; funds are held in bank deposits and are invested in charitable unit trusts whose market values may vary.

The most notable fundraising events to date were held at the Royal Geographical Society - 1997: a lecture given by Joanna Lumley, 'In the Land of the Thunder Dragon'; 1998: a film preview attended by TRH Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, 'Bhutan - the World's Last Shangri-la'; 1999: an evening chaired by Dr David Bellamy, 'Bellamy and Bhutan'. These events together raised in excess of £10,000.

At the 10th Anniversary Dinner at the Royal Chelsea Hospital in 2002 a painting of Taktshang Lhakhang, donated by artist Michael Blooman, was auctioned 'silently' and raised £1,601. A further £1,000 was realised from the sale of photographs of Bhutan held at the Nehru Centre, London in October 2006.

Appeals have been made by the Trust in support of The King's appeal for earthquake relief in 2009 and for the restoration of the Wangduephodrang Dzong which was destroyed by a fire in 2012.

In addition to these appeals, a total of over £30,000 has been disbursed in grants to many and various projects. A flavour of this diversity is given by the following: Braille watches and a Braille dictionary; maintenance of temple roofs in Eastern Bhutan; primary health care via The Bhutan Health Trust Fund; restoration of the polytunnels in the Royal Botanic Garden, Thimphu; teaching and learning aids for the Changangkha Lower Secondary School Special Needs Department; grant to RENEW - a community based support service for the victims of domestic violence; grant to Ugyen Chholing Museum - a fortified manor house in the Tang valley converted into a museum to show such a building as it was 40 years ago; visit to England by a Bhutanese Scout leader as part of an exchange programme; handbooks, 'Where There is No Doctor', to Basic Health Units; equipment for the Big Bakery (in Thimphu) run by the Drak-Tsho Vocational Training Centre for Disabled; voice recorders and associated media for use in the collection of Bhutan's oral history; equipment to pipe water to Pangsho Gompa to assist in its restoration; grant to the newly formed Disabled Persons Association of Bhutan; grant to the Bhutan Nuns Foundation; subsistence costs of Bhutanese attending selection interviews for scholarships from Pestalozzi International Village Trust.

Although the work of the Trust is low key, letters of thanks clearly show that its grants have made differences to many people's lives.

The Trust has benefitted greatly from the leadership and counsel of Lord Wilson, as chairman, and of Sir Robert Wade-Gery who were both founding trustees and who stood down in October 2008.

If you would like further information on the work of the Trust, please contact the Secretary Susan Gross at

If you would like to give a donation, please contact the Treasurer David Glazebrook, 82 Sterndale Road, London W14 0HX, e-mail: or on 07961 301764.

Bhutan Society Trust Fund grant application form (Microsoft Word .docx file)

The Trustees:

Chairman    Sir Simon Bowes Lyon KCVO   
Secretary    Susan Gross
Treasurer    David Glazebrook
Trustees:    Rosie Glazebrook
Michael Rutland
Andrew Sutton