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Grants for works in progress

Grants to assist writers with research costs or to 'buy time' are awarded twice a year through the Authors' Foundation and the K Blundell Trust.

The Authors' Foundation

The Authors' Foundation gives grants to authors whose project is for a British publisher.

Please note, the Authors' Foundation does not cover self-published authors as grants cannot be awarded to help towards the costs of publication.

Additional grants

Grants in memory of Taner Baybars, Roger Deakin, John Heygate, John C Laurence, Elizabeth Longford, Michael Meyer, Arthur Welton, and by the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation are also available. Further details are given in the guidelines.

The K Blundell Trust

The K Blundell Trust gives grants to British authors under the age of 40 whose project is for a British publisher. The project must aim to increase social awareness, and can be fiction or non-fiction.

Please note, the K Blundell Trust does not cover self-published authors as grants cannot be awarded to help towards the costs of publication.

How to apply

Application should be made by letter with the necessary enclosures. Meetings of the assessors take place twice-yearly. Download the guidelines above.

Please post your completed application to Paula Johnson, The Society of Authors, 84 Drayton Gardens, London SW10 9SB. You can contact Paula Johnson with any queries on 020 7373 6642.

The Society's three charitable trusts award occasional grants to professional authors who find themselves in sudden and temporary financial difficulty. Information about the trusts - the Francis Head Bequest, Authors' Contingency Fund, John Masefield Memorial Trust, and Margaret Rhondda Awards - is given below.

Grants cannot be made for education or research costs.

Grants for writers in need

The Francis Head Bequest

Mrs Head, a well-known literary agent, generously established this trust in her will with the object of making grants to professional writers (writing in the English language) who were born in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, and who are over the age of 35. It is aimed at authors who by reason of illness or otherwise are in financial difficulty. She particularly wished to help authors who are temporarily unable to maintain themselves or their families owing to illness or an accident, but the terms of the trust are reasonably wide.

The Authors' Contingency Fund

A number of emergency grants are made each year to professional British authors who are in immediate financial difficulty or for the financial relief of their dependants. In association with the Contingency Fund are occasional awards for poets and women journalists:

  • The John Masefield Memorial Trust provides grants to professional British poets or their dependants who are faced with sudden financial problems.
  • Margaret Rhondda Awards assist and support women journalists who are in needy circumstances.

Please note: These trusts are only open to professional freelance writers for whom writing books or full length scripts has provided a principal source of income.

How to apply

To apply for these charitable funds, please download the guidelines and application by clicking here and post your completed application to Sarah Baxter, The Society of Authors, 84 Drayton Gardens, London SW10 9SB. The assessment process takes up to three weeks.

Please contact Sarah Baxter with any queries on 020 7373 6642.


The Pension Fund

The Pension Fund provides a very modest pension to authors over 60 who have been members of the Society for over 10 years and are in financial need. Pensions are advertised when availability arises. At present no new pensions are available.

Further help and assistance

The Royal Literary Fund is the main charitable trust providing financial help to authors. See www.rlf.org.uk for information or contact the secretary, Eileen Gunn, at 3 Johnson’s Court, off Fleet Street, EC4A 3EA. Telephone: 020 7353 7150.

Turn2us is a new independent charity that helps people access the money available to them – through welfare benefits, grants and other help. Their free, accessible website is a comprehensive and invaluable resource that helps you find sources of financial support, quickly and easily, based on your particular needs and circumstances. In some cases, you can make online enquiries to grant-giving charities listed on the site. For further information visit www.turn2us.org.uk

The Professionals Aid Council is a national charity helping professionals and graduates in need of financial support. It makes modest grants to individuals and familes, who despite degree-level or equivalent education, find themselves struggling financially. PAC can offer small weekly grants and other help towards various living expenses. In addition, their education fund can give small grants towards education costs for children, and help those pursuing professional qualifications. For further information, visit www.professionalsaid.org.uk




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