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Grants and Funding


Ernest Cook Trust - Outdoor Essentials Grant

14 June 2021/Categories: Grants_and_Funding

Grants are available to UK state funded Primary and Secondary schools to enable them to get their pupils learning outdoors.

Fund Information

Funding body:
The Ernest Cook Trust
Maximum value:
£ 500
Application deadline:
None specified


The Ernest Cook Trust (ECT) was founded in 1952 by the late Ernest Cook, a grandson of Thomas Cook, founder of Cook's Travel Agency.

Objectives of Fund

The Ernest Cook Trust is an educational charity with a vision for ‘an environmentally engaged society’.

The COVID pandemic has demonstrated how important being outdoors is to the mental and physical wellbeing of everyone. It has also highlighted inequalities in people’s abilities to access the outdoors. Research commissioned by The Ernest Cook Trust has identified that transport costs are a key barrier for schools to access Outdoor Learning.

This grant supports school travel and transport costs to any centre or provider that can facilitate these ambitions, including: outdoor learning centres, forest schools, countryside parks, woodlands, national parks, farm parks, farms (including city farms), coastal areas and beaches. Trips to outdoor adventure centres for outdoor activities (such as kayaking and climbing) may be considered, but nature connection and environmental learning must be the primary focus.

Value Notes

Grants of £500 per school are available.

Who Can Apply

Applications are accepted from UK state funded Primary and Secondary schools. This includes:

  • Any UK state funded Ofsted Registered Primary, Middle, Secondary or High school
  • Any UK state funded Special or Alternative Provision School
  • Multi Academy Trusts, but applications must be made by the individual schools.

Priority will be given to:

  • Schools who are committed to enabling Outdoor Learning and see environmental engagement as an important part of education.
  • Schools who can demonstrate that Outdoor Learning has a wider benefit to families and their local community.
  • Schools with disadvantaged pupils.
  • Schools that are located in areas of high deprivation and/or have pupils who are living in challenging circumstances.


Funding is not available for the following:

  • Individuals
  • Independent Schools
  • Nursery Schools
  • Pre-Schools
  • Playgroups
  • Any school outside the UK
  • Youth groups or clubs
  • Outdoor Learning organisations/registered charities, eg forest schools
  • Parent Teacher Associations, Governors or ‘Friends of …’ Trusts. Applications must be made directly from the school.

Eligible Expenditure

Funding must be used to to pay for transport and travel to Outdoor Learning venues.


United Kingdom

How To Apply

This grant opportunity will be available three times in 2021. The current round is open from 8 June 2021 and 180 grants will be available. The application window will close when sufficient grant applications have been approved.

The online application form is available to complete on the Trust's website.

Useful documents & links

Useful Links

Addresses and contacts

For further information on how to obtain this grant locally, please contact the following:

  1. Grants Administrator
    The Ernest Cook Trust
    The Estate Office
    Fairford Park
    GL7 4JH
    Tel: 01285 712492
    Email: [email protected]

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