The Vivat Trust was established in 1981 as a registered charity and a national building preservation trust. The Trust was the first to be granted permission by the Charity Commissioners to acquire properties on a leasehold basis, as opposed to securing freeholds. This has enabled the Trust to restore important properties whose owners cannot, or will not, grant a freehold.
It was set up without an endowment so as well as core funds, the cost of each project needs to be met. Fundraising forms a key part of the Trust's work and it relies on grant giving bodies such as the Architectural Heritage Fund, the Heritage Lottery Fund, English Heritage, Historic Scotland, the Pilgrim Trust, the Monument Trust and numerous trusts and foundations.
Once the buildings have been repaired and converted they are let out as distinctive and luxurious holiday accommodation and marketed through the Trust's subsidiary, Vivat Trust Management Services Ltd. The income from the holiday rental covers running and maintenance costs. Please refer to 'Current Projects' to find out how we work and which projects we're currently involved with.
The Vivat Trust works in three key ways:
1) It takes on a long lease from a private owner, develops a restoration scheme, fundraises to meet the project costs, refurbishes and decorates the interior and manages it thereafter as a holiday let.
2) It works in partnership with other building preservation trusts or charitable organisations, offering Vivat holiday accommodation as a use for all or part of a building. Provides, if necessary, advice on project development, fundraising and property management.
3) It markets historic properties owned by private individuals or charitable organisations.