Brandon Trust

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Brandon Trust
Brandon Trust logo.jpg
Formation March 1994; 23 years ago (1994-03)
Type Charitable organization
Legal status Operational
Purpose Learning Disability Support Services
Headquarters Patchway, Bristol
Region served
Bonnie Dean
Chief Executive
Rob Rowe (Acting)

Brandon Trust is a United Kingdom charitable organisation working with and for people with learning disabilities.


Brandon Trust is an award-winning[1] UK-registered charity working throughout the South West of England and in London, supporting approximately 1,600 people with learning disabilities and autism.

It has more than 2,000 employees[2] and its registered head office[3] is in Patchway, Bristol.

Brandon Trust is licensed to provide services by the Care Quality Commission (Provider ID: 1-101639606). It provides personalised services designed around individual needs, from living solutions to vocational courses, from community and leisure access to employment training and support.

Brandon Trust is a member of the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG).[4] Former chief executive Lucy Hurst-Brown, was a regular contributor to national articles[5][6] relating to social care and learning disabilities.


Brandon Trust was formed in 1994 by the merger of the Buttress Trust with the South Avon Housing Association. In April 2000, Spectrum Day Services, previously part of the NHS, was transferred to Brandon Trust. Six years later the charity secured an innovative contract with the Gloucestershire Partnership. The following year, in 2007, Brandon began work in Cornwall, supporting over 90 adults with learning disabilities, all brokered on individual budgets. Its London operations started in November 2012 as part of a full merger with not-for-profit organisation Odyssey Care.

In April 2014, Herefordshire Council awarded a contract to Brandon Trust for the provision of day services for people with learning disabilities in the county.[7]

In August 2015, Brandon Trust opened its first charity shop in Bristol at 2 Cotham Hill with the promise of offering shoppers a different experience from other charity outlets in the area. Since then, two more shops have opened in Bristol and the charity is also involved in running several social enterprises including a care farm, pottery, ceramics studios, and several cafes.

From September 2015, Brandon Trust began providing community day support services to adults with learning disabilities and autism in Warwickshire. It followed a Warwickshire County Council tendering process in which Brandon was successfully awarded the contract to run the Sesame Centre in Rugby and the Ramsden Centre in Nuneaton.

In December 2015, Yate-based charity Children's Playlink, transferred its South Gloucestershire services to Brandon Trust, including holiday play and buddy schemes.

Then, in April 2016, Brandon started providing supported living services to more than 70 adults with learning disabilities and autism, across 18 locations in Oxfordshire. It provides services in Banbury, Bicester, Oxford City, Hook Norton, Chipping Norton, and Chalgrove.


Brandon Trust’s 20th anniversary report Finding Freedom[8] launched at the Learning Disability Today London conference[9] on 27 November 2014, warns that the vast majority of people with learning disabilities remain invisible in our society despite more than 20 years of ‘care in the community.’ Research commissioned by the charity found that 64% of people surveyed said people with learning disabilities were not visible in communities.[10] This is despite an estimated 1.5 million people with learning disabilities living in the UK. Of those who do know someone with a learning disability, just a quarter said they would describe that person as a friend. Drawing on her experience of three decades working in the disability sector, former Brandon Trust CEO, Lucy Hurst-Brown, was invited to speak to Radio 4's Four Thought programme during the 2016 Hay Festival where she debated the issue of people with learning disabilities being 'invisible' and 'lonely citizens' in society, with little or no voice. The script[11] was broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Four Thought programme on 29 June, and has attracted much feedback within the social care sector. The full podcast is on the BBC website.[12]


  1. ^ "Third Sector website". Third Sector. 
  2. ^ "Charity Commission website". Charity Commission. 
  3. ^ "Get in touch". Brandon Trust. 
  4. ^ "Brandon Trust". Voluntary Organisations Disability Group. 
  5. ^ Hurst-Brown, Lucy (2015). "People with learning disabilities should live in the community, not under lock and key". The Guardian. 
  6. ^ Hurst-Brown, Lucy (2014). "People with learning disabilities need friends, not just paid carers". The Guardian. 
  7. ^ "Brandon Trust to take over council's day centre activities". Herefordshire Council. 2014. 
  8. ^ "Our publications". Brandon Trust. 
  9. ^ "Charity calls for more action to help people with learning disabilities integrate into the community". Learning Disability Today. 2014. 
  10. ^ O'Hara, Mary (2014). "Want to improve for people with learning disabilities? Listen to them". The Guardian. 
  11. ^ "Our publications" (PDF). Brandon Trust. 
  12. ^ "A Lonely Society". BBC Radio 4. 2016. 

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