Mrs Jane Cart's Trust Providing support to clergy and their dependents from or within
the Diocese of St Albans


The Jane Cart Trusts are two historic grant making charities based in Bedfordshire: Mrs Jane Cart’s Trust and Mrs Jane Cart’s Almshouse Trust.  Both Trusts are administered by the Bedfordshire and Luton Community Foundation.

The main Trust focuses on providing support to Church of England Clergy and their dependants, where that member of the clergy has worked in the Diocese of St. Albans. The Almshouse Trust supports the housing costs of poor single women near Dunstable.

Jane Cart

Generosity & Legacy

Jane’s wealth made it possible to be extremely generous to the town and the Church, both in her lifetime and in her will.

Four months before Jane’s death in 1736 at the age of 83, she set up a Trust with five Trustees and a Clerk, to which she sold/transferred all her properties, and they were charged with the task of administering the properties and distributing the annual revenue to specific beneficiaries.  After her death, her will transferred her other investments to the Trust along with further specific instructions. Any annual surplus after these instructions had been satisfied, were to be distributed to deserving persons within categories stipulated by her. These are clearly expressed in the dedication inscribed on her Memorial in the north aisle of the Priory Church in Dunstable, of which the following is an extract:

“Besides several other useful and lasting benefactions, the Surplus of a large Estate by her bequeathed for the annual Relief of poor Clergymen their Widows and Daughters, will be (it is hop’d) an abiding Memorial of her pure Religion, and hearty Affection to the Church of England to the latest Posterity.”

Jane Cart generously gave away much money during her lifetime but she still had much to leave in her will and her legacy continues almost 300 years after her death, through the work of the Mrs Jane Cart’s Trust.