County Durham Community Foundation manages over 200 charitable funds from which we are able to award millions in grants to the local community each year.

We are proud to be a trusted partner for many philanthropic businesses and local people. We pride ourselves on offering an effective and efficient fund management service that enables them to give back to their local community with as much or as little involvement as they desire.

Read a little bit about some of the funds we manage, and what fund-holders say about working with County Durham Community Foundation.


Banks Group

We have a strong working relationship with the Banks Group, managing 23 funds on their behalf that support local communities all over the UK. Since setting up their first fund with us in 1995, Banks have awarded over £5  million in grants, supporting crucial projects such as Brandon Boxing Club to purchase a new ring and Bowes Museum to replace one of the Gatehouse Lodges. You can see their currently available funding and apply for grants here.


Darlington Building Society

Darlington Building Society are a great example of how a successful company use a profit share model to give back to their local community. Their fund support projects in and around communities where they have a branch.  Darlington Building Society member’s choose the causes to be supported every year. 


David & Barbara Watson

The Watson’s have been supporting young people in County Durham through the Foundation since 2005. Since then, they have helped a number of individuals progress their talents and have the opportunity to excel at something they love.

I first became involved with community foundations when I was Company Secretary of Northumbrian Water who had Endowment Funds with all three community foundations in the North East.  My wife Barbara and I who live in County Durham, then decided to set up our own fund to support performing arts and cultural projects due to our personal interest and involvement in amateur operatics.


We both wanted to encourage and support others who were potentially less advantaged than ourselves to fulfil aspirations and achieve their potential. We strongly believe that performing can really enhance lives by building confidence and self-esteem and foster new friendships through their chosen activity.
Barbara and I have both been very active in our grant-making and are happy to discuss with our fund manager at the Community Foundation where our support is most needed with local ‘arts’ projects.”


David & Barbara Watson Endowment fund