St Crispin Scholarship- -

You can help us make the difference

The University of Northampton Scholarship Appeal

In 2016 the University is introducing a major new Scholarship programme, which will be aimed specifically at talented and ambitious individuals from the UK and abroad whose financial and personal circumstances mean that they are not able to benefit from an education at the University of Northampton without significant support. Applications will also be welcome from young people in care, from those that have had difficulties in their lives, and from the most socially deprived people in society.

The scholarship will provide both funding for these students and support them in their transition to, and success within, the University.

The scholarships, known as the St Crispin Scholarships1, will run for the full three years of a student’s undergraduate degree course. In addition to significant financial contributions for both maintenance and tuition, St Crispin scholars will receive personal support from pastoral and academic tutors, as well as peer and alumni mentoring. Furthermore, they will get paid placements with blue-chip employers at the end of their first and second year studies.

The cost of each St Crispin Scholarship over the three years of a typical undergraduate degree is £30,000. This will fund:

  • grants of £7,000 a year to help students meet their living and tuition costs, provided in two instalments of £3,500 in September and February of each year;
  • two grants of £1,500 to help meet costs associated with summer vacation placements;
  • academic and pastoral support and mentoring from both peers and alumni, at a cost of £2,000 a year.

Supporters (or groups of supporters) who donate £30,000 or more can choose to have their names linked to a particular award.

To make a donation to this programme click here

1St Crispin is patron saint of Northampton and shoe makers. Naming the scholarships after him celebrates the University’s location and its world-leading expertise in research and teaching in leather manufacturing and product design.

To fund the St Crispin Scholarships, the University of Northampton will be inviting donations to the Scholarship Appeal, but it recognises that some supporters may not be able to give directly. The proposed Scholarship Bond will provide an alternative option – a savings bond where supporters can make an investment and donate the interest upfront to the Appeal.

The Scholarship Bond will be issued by Allia. They’re a charity that helps social organisations make positive impact and they have been issuing bonds like this since 1999, creating millions of pounds in grant funding for charitable projects around the UK. Every bond that has matured has been able to repay investors in full.

This information is not an offer or an invitation to invest, but is intended to gather expressions of interest in the proposed bond.

The Scholarship Bond

The University of Northampton Scholarship Bond will be a five-year ethical savings bond from Allia that donates interest upfront to the University of Northampton. Individuals and organisations wishing to invest in the Bond can chose at the beginning how much interest is given to fund St Crispin Scholarships when the Bond is issued, and how much interest they want to receive, if any, when the Bond matures.

Allia will generate the interest by lending money invested in the Bond to a charitable social housing provider, Places for People Homes (PfPH), which is regulated by the Homes and Communities Agency. PfPH is part of the Places for People Group, which is the largest provider of social housing in England, and has a credit rating that is on par with many high street banks. By holding money in the Bond, rather than a standard bank account, investors can fund the St Crispin Scholars while knowing that their investment is also creating positive impact for people with housing and support needs.

The interest rates available on the Bond will depend on market conditions at the time of the offer. Based on current conditions, the gross interest available to donate could be at least 10% of the amount invested, meaning that an investment of £300,000 could provide an immediate grant of £30,000, sufficient to fund the full three years of a St Crispin Scholarship.

These figures are for illustration purposes only – market conditions may change and the final rates offered may be higher or lower. It is important to read the final offer document carefully before deciding whether to invest.

Next Steps

Before formally launching the Scholarship Bond, the University needs to identify sufficient interest from its supporters. The University has committed £1,000,000 of its own funds to the Bond and its target is to identify a further £7,000,000 of pledged investments prior to launch.

If you would be interested in supporting the Scholarship Appeal via the Bond, we invite you to make a pledge by completing the form here and returning it to Allia.

By making a pledge you are not committing to making an investment, but we will send you the offer document when the Bond is open for subscription and invite you to fulfil your pledge.

Please note that a decision to invest in any bond must be made solely on the basis of the offer document published by Allia. Prospective investors should not rely on this document or any other information when deciding whether to invest.

If you have any questions about the proposed Scholarship Bond or this pledge form, please contact Allia:

By telephone on 0845 456 2431

By email at

About Allia

Allia has over 17 years’ experience of supporting charities and social enterprises. To date we have raised around £85m of investment in our bonds from a broad range of individuals, companies, foundations and public sector bodies. £11m of this has already been repaid, reinvested or turned into donations to the investor’s chosen charity.

We also manage a range of other activities, including raising loan finance for charities through retail bonds listed on London Stock Exchange, and operating two enterprise centres in Cambridge and Peterborough. For more information, visit their website at

Bondholder stories

Alastair Conn is a director of NVM, a Newcastle-based venture capital management firm. In 2001 NVM decided to make a corporate investment in an Allia Bond and to commit some cash from one of their fund, but Alastair also wanted to make a personal investment as well.

“Investing in the Bond allowed me to give in a relatively pain-free way, with the knowledge that at the end of the five year period I would be able to get my original investment back if I needed the money for something else.”

Alastair has since rolled his investment over twice into further bonds, increasing the amount each time.

TTP Group is a successful technology and product development company based near Cambridge. TTP Group usually gives around £60,000 a year to local charities. But by investing £2.5 million of its cash reserves in a six-year Allia Bond, it was able to release a grant to a charity of £500,000.

“The Bond allowed us to make a sizeable donation far beyond our current level of giving.”

Dr Gerald Avison, Chairman, TTP Group:

“While there is only a limited amount that we can give away, the Bond gave us the opportunity to use part of our cash reserves to support a great cause at practically zero cost”


How will I know the difference my money is making?

The social impact from the St Crispin Scholarships will be measured by the Institute for Social Innovation and Impact at the University of Northampton and an annual impact report will be sent to investors.

How do I invest in the Scholarship Bond?

At the moment we are only taking pledges to invest, so you cannot invest now. Applications to invest in the proposed Bond can only be made on the basis of the offer document to be published by Allia. You will need to make an application during the offer period, and the bonds will be issued on a date specified in the offer document.

Who can invest?

You will be able to invest if you’re an individual over 18 and resident in the UK, or a company or charitable trust based in the UK.

Will I be able to invest through my SIPP?

If you have a self-invested personal pension (SIPP) you may be able to invest in the bonds subject to the rules of your SIPP provider.

How safe will my money be?

Allia believes the risk of investing in the bonds will be low. The way the bond will be structured means that investors will be relying on Places for People Homes for the repayment of their bond and not taking risk on Allia. PfPH currently has a credit rating of A2 with a stable outlook from Moody’s Investors Service. This means that its obligations "are judged to be upper-medium grade and are subject to low credit risk". Please note the bonds will not be covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.

Can Gift Aid be claimed on the amount donated?

The money donated is gross (untaxed) interest. Since no tax has been deducted there is therefore no tax relief to be claimed.

What happens if I need the money before the end of the five years?

The Bond will be a fixed-term investment and not suitable for those who may require access to their money before maturity. However, you will be able to transfer your bond if someone is willing to buy it from you.

Will I have to pay tax on the money I get back?

Investors should not be liable to pay any UK tax on the return of their principal investment on redemption. Any interest you receive on maturity may be paid gross and may be subject to UK income tax.