Milverton, Somerset

Milverton United Charities February update

People often ask about the Milverton United Charities (not to be confused with the Milverton Trust which is another village organisation). Many years ago land and money was left by parishioners to different charities in the village. These charities were amalgamated some time ago into one charity, the Milverton United Charities (MUC). The money that was left in these bequests forms the capital and the interest from the capital is used for specific purposes, mainly for the elderly people of Milverton. We have documents going back to the beginning of the twentieth century for payment for shawls, cloaks, overcoats, etc. for the poor and deserving individuals of the parish. Before the NHS was set up the MUC would also help with medical expenses.

The MUC is administered by a group of Trustees who all have a particular expertise in the village of Milverton. The interest payments to the MUC are then used for charitable purposes such as Christmas vouchers to be spent in the Milverton Stores for those people over 65 who have lived in the village for more than five years, and also vouchers which may be used for the Wivey Link. Many people feel they do not need their Christmas voucher for themselves and food is bought for the local foodbank in lieu. On occasions the Trustees will award small amounts of money for deserving causes such as a carer providing end of life care for a parishioner.

If someone requests money for a specific purpose this is looked at carefully by the Trustees and, provided it falls within the remit of the Charities, we have often been able to help. The MUC is overseen by the Charity Commission and we have to adhere to their stringent rules and regulations.

Jean Ainsworth-Smith
Clerk to the Trustees, Milverton United Charities