About us

The John Coates Charitable Trust was established by John Bernard Maurice Coates by trust deed on 6th November 1969.

Growing up, John Coates had an acute awareness and understanding of the limitations caused by circumstance, due in no small part to his own diagnosis of ankylosing spondylitis at the age of 19. This in turn led him to become one of the founding members of NASS (National Axial Spondyloarthritis Society) to help others live with, and better understand, the condition.

An avid reader, with an appreciation of the gifts that his education had given him, John Coates had a lifelong interest in science, history and heritage. He was also a keen sailor who knew first-hand the thrill and joy to be derived from the natural world. As such, he wanted to give this opportunity to others, supporting children’s learning in a wide and fully holistic sense, as well as the enrichment of adult lives, especially in making the arts and the outdoors more accessible.

The legacy of John Coates’ many interests is reflected in the causes which his trust continues to support, namely in the fields of pioneering healthcare and research, conservation, history, social care and education.

It seems fitting for this family man that his children and grandchildren, as the current trustees, continue to promote causes which were close to his heart – and remain close to theirs.

Current trustees:

  • Rebecca Lawes – Chair
  • Claire Cartledge
  • Sue Down
  • Catharine Kesley
  • Elspeth McGregor
  • Annie Youngman

“The John Coates Charitable Trust have been of invaluable support to Maggie’s and we could not have built our beautiful centre in Southampton without them. The Trust have also supported us while we plan to build Maggie’s Cambridge centre. The impact of the pandemic on people with cancer has meant that they need our programme of psychological, social and practical support more than ever, and the Trust has helped us continue to be there for them in these most difficult times.”

Dame Laura Lee DBE, Chief Executive, Maggie’s