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Reid Trust

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0505 BC GB130
Held at: Royal Holloway, University of London
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Full title: Reid Trust
Date(s): 1860-1992
Level of description: Subfonds
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Extent: 7 boxes or 0.07 cubic metres
Name of creator(s): Reid Trust | for the improvement of female education
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Reid Trust came into existence in 1866, following the death of Mrs Reid, and provided a capital sum of £16,400 to be used 'for the promotion and improvement of female education'. It stipulated that there should be at least three (and no more than five) Reid Trustees, all unmarried women: the first Trustees were Elizabeth Ann Bostock, Jane Martineau and Eleanor Elizabeth Smith, who also served as Managers of the Residence. Control of capital which could help the financially precarious College, as well as control of the property leases, put the three in a position to determine a new structure of management for Bedford College. Due to their demands, the School attached to the College was closed and the Bedford College Council ceased to exist in Jun 1868, replaced for eighteen months by a Committee of Management. After a period of autocratic rule, the Committee of Management proposed a Constitution that was accepted by the Board and came into force in 1869. The College was incorporated as an Association under the Board of Trade, with Memoranda and Articles of Association, and the management structure consisted of a body of Members termed 'The College', which replaced The Board, and a new Council elected from amongst the Members.

Following this period of change, the Reid Trust used its income to promote female education, and, rather than giving an annual lump sum to Bedford College, chose to devote funds to the creation of scholarships, exhibitions and grants for entrance to the College made directly by the Trustees to the recipient. This was done through the creation in 1872 of a Scholarship Fund with capital of £2000. They also promoted higher education by making contributions to Bedford College Council for stated purposes such as the increase of the salaries of lecturers and a yearly public examination of the standard of teaching. Donations were made to the Library and laboratories, and money was sometimes provided for building or extension work.

After the first Government grant to Bedford College in 1895, the Reid Trust discontinued its contributions to higher education, and widened its donations to take in other institutions, such as the London School of Medicine for Women. A travelling scholarship named for Rachel Notcutt was founded in 1918 to commemorate her long service with the Trust, and the Trust has maintained close links with the affairs of the College. The Reid scholarships, which were suspended in [1985], were recently reinstated.


Scope and content/abstract:

Legal documents relating to the Reid Trust, 1860-1931, including a Declaration of Trust, 1860, between Mrs Reid, Bostock, Martineau and Smith, and deeds and correspondence relating to the appointment of new trustees, 1896-1931. Financial papers for the Reid Trust, 1859-1955, including details of the Reid Scholarship Fund, a Reid Scholarship Account Book, 1859-1906, bank books and share certificates. Papers relating to the Rachel Notcutt Travelling Scholarship, 1913-1939, including letters to Miss Lee from Bertha Tilley and D Bains describing their travels, 1931-[1936], letters of application and recommendation, 1919-1938, correspondence relating to the establishment and funding of the scholarship, 1918-1919, including correspondence from Rachel Notcutt, 1913-1918. Papers relating to the administration of the Reid Trust, 1867-1954, notably early material concerning the Trust, 1867-1939, including papers relating to the Bedford College School, 1867, the appointment of a Mistress of Studies in 1892, the removal of Reid Trust funding for higher education, 1895 and a grant for new buildings at Bedford College, 1903-1907; legal papers relating to the Scholarship Fund, 1871-1872; correspondence, 1898-1921, relating to the Bostock Medical Scholarship at the London School of Medicine for Women. Notebook for the Reid Trustees Memorial Fund, 1884-1885, to commemorate the work of Mrs Reid, including letters from Henrietta Busk to the Bedford College Council; book plate printing block for the Reid Trust, [1894]. Papers relating to the Reid Scholarships, 1871-1992, including correspondence concerning recommendations of scholars by the Staff and Council of Bedford College, [1901]-1922; official papers and correspondence, 1867-1984, including correspondence with Bedford Council announcing the decision of the Trust to end the Reid Scholarships in 1984; correspondence between the Trustees and Bedford College concerning the Reid Trustees Scholarship in Arts, 1967-1992.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The papers are mainly arranged in files according to subject. Papers relating to the Notcutt Scholarship are divided into files of correspondence relating to each successful candidate. Papers relating to the administration of the Trust and the Reid Scholarships are grouped chronologically.

Conditions governing access:

Administrative and Committee papers are closed for 30 years from the last date on file. Papers relating to individuals are usually closed for 100 years from the subject's birth. Users are advised to consult the College Archivist for specific details.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies of open material may be supplied, subject to the condition of the original. Requests to publish original material should be directed to the College Archivist.

Finding aids:

'A catalogue of the Archives of Bedford College (University of London), 1849-1985' by Claire Gobbi Daunton and Elizabeth Bennett, 1987.

Archival Information

Archival history:

The papers were transferred from the Bedford College Archives when the College merged with Royal Holloway in 1985.

Immediate source of acquisition:

See Archival history.

Allied Materials

Related material:

The Royal Holloway, University of London Archives hold material relating to the Reid Entrance Scholarships, 1905-1936 (BC AR362/9/1). BC PH1 contains photographs of some of the Reid Trustees.

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

A history of Bedford College for Women, 1849-1937 (Oxford University Press, London, 1939), by Dame Margaret Jansen Tuke; Educating women: a pictorial history of Bedford College, University of London, 1849-1985 (Alma Publishers, Surrey, 1991), by Dr Linna Bentley.

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Sarah Aitchison as part of the AIM25 project.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with general International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Mar 2000

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