About Us

British Gas Energy Trust incorporating the Scottish Gas Energy Trust, is an independent charitable Trust , established in 2004. The Trust is funded solely from donations from British Gas - £6 million in 2017/18. The Trust contributes to the relief of poverty, with a particular focus on fuel poverty.

Apply For A Grant

The easiest way for an individual to apply is via the Trust’s online application form.

Apply Now » Grants Available »

Need Fuel Debt/Money Advice?

British Gas Energy Trust provides funding to organisations across England, Wales and Scotland, to enable them to offer specialist fuel debt/money advice services. These impartial and independent services are available free to individuals. Find your nearest funded advice organisation here.

BGET Funded Advice Organisations »

The Trust

The Trust helps families and individuals experiencing hardship, who are struggling with gas and electricity debts, by awarding grants to clear those debts. This makes a significant difference to the lives of thousands of people each year, helping them to get back on their feet and remain debt free going forward.

The Trust also funds organisations across England, Wales and Scotland to provide fuel debt and money advice services within communities.

British Gas Energy Trust Mission Statement

  • The relief of poverty particularly among those who are unable to meet or pay charges for the supply of energy provided to premises used or occupied by them; and
  • The prevention and relief of poverty by educating the public in relation to debt awareness and prevention.

British Gas Energy Trust – Aims

  • To deliver a grants programme aimed at reducing energy debt for individuals and families experiencing poverty and hardship;
  • To increase and improve free and impartial independent fuel debt and money advice services and education in England, Wales and Scotland via the Trust’s Organisational Grant Programme;
  • To reduce the potential for people to get into debt through the funding of debt prevention work;
  • To fund innovative and holistic programmes that balance energy efficiency measures with wider welfare benefits take up and other interventions to improve the physical and mental health and well-being of vulnerable people; and
  • To ensure the maximum amount of funds available for giving through the effective and efficient management of the Trust.

The Trust meets its aim by delivering two grant making programmes:

Organisational Grants Programme

The Trust provides grants to organisations to provide fuel debt and money advice services within communities.

BGET Funded Advice Organisations »

Grants to Individuals and Families

The Trust awards grants to clear gas and electricity debts for individuals demonstrating greatest priority need.

Apply Now »

Case Studies

Highlighting particular instances where British Gas Energy Trust funded organisations have been able to make a positive difference to people’s lives. These Case Studies can be viewed by following the link below.

View Case Studies »

Meet The Team

British Gas Energy Trust is an independent Charitable Trust. The governance and development of the Trust is overseen by a group of unpaid Trustees drawn from across the UK. The Trustees meet on a quarterly basis.

Helen Charlton – Chair

Helen has over 20 years’ experience working in the utilities sector in consumer advocacy. Her wide-ranging experience includes policy, regulation, stakeholder engagement, customer research and strategy, and provision for vulnerable consumers. Helen is a voluntary grants assessor for a large charitable foundation which makes grants to charities helping vulnerable and disadvantaged people. Her early career was as a commercial solicitor specialising in competition law and utilities regulation.

Albert Chong – Vice Chair

Albert works with entrepreneurs who are driven to tackle some of the challenges facing our society. He works for UnLtd, the Foundation for Social Entrepreneurs, following a career in structural engineering, and technical outsourcing. As Head of Quality and Performance at UnLtd, Albert oversees the continual improvement and learning for the organisation to excel in its delivery. He is passionate about making a meaningful and lasting impact to our society.

Albert holds an MBA from Imperial College Management School and BEng from Bristol University.

William Gillis – Trustee

William was Managing Director of Warm Zones community interest company (WZcic) until his retirement in March 2018. Prior to his appointment as Managing Director of WZcic, he was Chief Executive of National Energy Action (NEA), the national fuel poverty charity and the parent company of WZcic, having been initially appointed to the charity as Deputy Director in 1988.

William has been a member of a number of government and industry fuel poverty and energy efficiency advisory bodies.

Before joining NEA he had extensive experience working in local government in housing management and the delivery of capital programmes, together with general community development. He has also been involved in a range of voluntary housing and energy projects.

Laurie Lee – Trustee

Laurie joined CARE International UK as Chief Executive in August 2014. He previously worked for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he led the team working on policy, advocacy and government relations in Africa. Prior to 2008, Laurie was a civil servant in the UK Government, mainly in the Department for International Development (DFID), in which his last position was Deputy Director and Head of the International Trade Department. From 2004 to 2006 Laurie served as Deputy Director and Foreign Policy Adviser on Africa to the UK Prime Minister, helping to negotiate some of the key agreements on debt, aid and HIV and AIDS reached during the UK’s presidency of the G8 in 2005.

Karen McArthur – Trustee

Karen had leadership roles in Corporate Responsibility/Sustainability for global companies including Vodafone and Thomson Reuters. She now has a portfolio of roles advocating for customers including London Travel Watch and the Waterways Ombudsman

As an independent member of the water forum at Severn Trent and Chair of the group she challenges the company, advocating for vulnerable consumer interests. As a Trustee of the Nationwide Charitable Foundation she was involved in developing an award winning strategy. She is a founder Trustee for MCS, a charity promoting low carbon and renewable technologies. Karen also represents the charity on the trading company which develops standards for the industry and whose profits are returned to the charity.

Steve McClenaghan – Treasurer

Steven is an ICAEW qualified accountant currently working as an Audit Principal for the National Audit Office. His experience in public sector audit includes government departments and publicly funded charities. His current role involves the audit of the Academies Sector.

Colin Trend - Trustee

Colin has established two not-for-profit money advice centres in Plymouth, one of which he still project manages: Plymouth Focus Advice Centre. He is also a specialist tutor in mental health and vulnerability and has written and tutored courses both for advisers and creditors across the whole of the UK as part of the MAT's Wiseradviser branded training programme for a number of years.

Sheila Wheeler – Trustee

Sheila has spent much of her career to date in the public and not for profit sectors. She is a qualified CIPFA accountant and has worked in local government as a Finance Director and Chief Executive in a number of local authorities. More recently she has worked as UK Debt Advice Director and Board member for the Money Advice Service leading on the development of a new commissioning strategy and standards for debt advice. She is currently working as a consultant to the charity sector. Her area of interest is focusing on social and financial inclusion through looking at impact, outcomes and good governance.

Sheila is the Macmillan nominated member on the Investment Committee of the Care & Wellbeing Fund, (funded by Big Society Capital and Macmillan Cancer Support) and she is a Lay Trustee of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark.

Jessica Taplin – Chief Executive Officer

As British Gas Energy Trust’s first full time CEO, Jessica brings with her significant sector leadership, together with an innovative approach to developing services and a track record of developing and supporting effective partnership collaborations. People are her passion, and Jessica has over 20 years of experience across both corporate, grant funding and charity leadership sectors.

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