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Royal schools that operate under a Royal charter are not regulated by the federal or state government in public schools. Schools with a Royal charter, such as Canford School, Christ's Hospital, and King's College School, among others, are established through a formal document issued by the monarch or other royal figure, granting them certain rights and privileges.

A Royal charter and regulation serve distinct purposes in governance. A Royal charter is a formal document issued by the monarch, granting independent legal standing to an organization and defining its objectives. These charters have been used since the 12th century to incorporate companies, public bodies, cities, universities, and professional institutions. They confer legal personality on the organization and define its powers to govern its own affairs.

These  regulation involve rules and standards set by the governmental bodies to oversee various aspects of an organization's operations. While a Royal charter grants autonomy and legal status to an entity, regulation involves monitoring compliance with specific laws, guidelines, or standards set by the governmental bodies.  For example, in the context of press regulation, a Royal charter may establish a body to oversee press regulation without directly regulating the press itself.

In summary, a Royal charter provides legal status and independence to an organization, while regulation involves setting and enforcing rules and standards for compliance within a particular sector or industry.

The benefits of having a Royal Charter for Organizations include:

  1. Recognition of professional expertise and status within the field.

  2. Professional recognition from peers and the public.

  3. Protection of the profession's status and reputation.

  4. Increased public confidence and awareness.

  5. Enhanced profile for the organization and its members.

  6. Strengthening of the organization's brand and creating aspiration.

  7. Potential for increased membership and retention.

  8. Opportunity to act in the public interest while maintaining autonomy.

These benefits highlight how a Royal charter can elevate an organization's standing, provide credibility, and enhance its impact within its area of expertise.

Grants & Funding

Grant-giving trusts and foundations fund research at Royal charter universities by providing grants that can range from a few hundred dollars to multi-million dollar awards. These trusts and foundations derive their income primarily from endowments, which are capital sums given by individuals, families, or companies.


Philanthropic organizations often have specific areas of interest or strategic priorities, and they fund projects that align with their mission. For instance, they may support research that has a clear need, such as for general purposes, buildings, equipment, or special projects. They look for how the grant fits with the university's mission and strategy, as well as the demonstrable impact of the research.


The process of obtaining funding from these trusts and foundations typically involves submitting a proposal that outlines the research project, its objectives, and its expected outcomes. The proposal must also demonstrate how the project aligns with the funding body's interests and priorities. Successful applications are those that can show a clear benefit to society or advancement in the field of study.




Organizations that have been granted a Royal charter include:

  1. Aberystwyth University

  2. Air Training Corps

  3. Arts Council England

  4. Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)

  5. Association of Corporate Treasurers

  6. Harvest Christian University ( Royal School )

  7. Bank of England

  8. British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

  9. British Red Cross

  10. Cardiff University

  11. Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb)

  12. Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI)

  13. Royal Society of Chemistry

  14. Royal College of Physicians

  15. Royal College of Surgeons

  16. Scouts Australia

These organizations, among many others, have been granted a Royal charter, which confers independent legal personality on them and defines their objectives  

Funding Resources

Royal charter universities, like other higher education institutions, can access a variety of funding sources for research, learning and teaching, skills development, and innovation. These sources include government agencies, research councils, and charitable organizations. For instance, in Scotland, around £1.6 billion a year is invested in universities and colleges for various purposes, including research and innovation.

Research England, part of UK Research and Innovation, is responsible for funding English higher education institutions (HEIs), supporting them in delivering national agendas.


Research councils, such as the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), are major public investors in fundamental research, distributing significant funding across a broad range of subjects.


Additionally, charitable organizations and learned societies, such as The Royal Society, The British Academy, and The Leverhulme Trust, provide grants and scholarships for research and education across various academic disciplines.


Royal charter universities also benefit from their autonomy, which allows them to govern their own affairs independently. This autonomy is legally established either by Royal Charter or as legally-defined higher education corporations, giving these institutions " the right to award degrees and receive public funding ' on the same basis as others.


With their autonomy, royal charter universities must still adhere to quality and financial sustainability standards set by  The Royal Department of Education regulatory bodies  which is the Quality Assurance Agency and the Higher Education Funding Council.


In summary, funding for Royal Charter Universities comes from a mix of government sources, research councils, and charitable organizations, supporting a wide range of academic and research activities. Their autonomy, granted by the Royal Charter, allows them to manage these funds effectively while maintaining high standards of education and research.

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