Our History

British Benevolent Society of Peru

 

Celebrates 50th Anniversary

 

The earliest record of a fund held by the British Community for charitable purposes was January 1907 when there was a surplus of funds collected to celebrate the coronation. of King Edward VII. This was used to assist British subjects in distress. However, the British firm in whose custody the surplus had been placed went bankrupt in the crash of 1929/30 and so did the embryo Benevolent Society.

 

Diplomatic Beginnings

 

Two gentlemen of the British Community at that time - N.E. Sir Charles Betinck and British Consul Mr. Henry Hopson - exercised their influence to organize a society for the relief of distressed and destitute British subjects in Peru. The British Benevolent Society was created on February 3rd, 1932.

Its first year showed 43 individuals donating S/ .905, a fete bringing in S/. 2,000, and S/. 1,263 raised at various social events. That year, 20 people were helped to the tune of S/ .832. From 1932-1940 over 200 grants were made with an average annual expenditure of S/. 3,244.

In 1939 The Society was entrusted with the administration of the British Burial Ground Association until this became a separate independent entity. The Chairman of the Benevolent Society is a permanent trustee of The Burial Ground Association. In 1940 when the British Commonwealth Society was founded, the work done by the Benevolent Society was undertaken by a sub-committee of the BCS.

 

War Years and After

 

Throughout the war years the Benevolent Sub - Committee dispensed funds to distressed Commonwealth ex-expatriates, notwithstanding the enormous sums of money that the Commonwealth Community raised and sent to the U.K. When the war ended, The Benevolent Society cared for a number of widows and orphans of servicemen.

In 1970, when the British Benevolent Society of Peru was reestablished it was granted official recognition as a charitable institution and donations were tax deductible. Also, in 1970 a small house was rented in Chaclacayo for two elderly men, becoming thus the forerunner of today's Newtyle House.

 

NEW TYLE HOUSE

 

In 1971 Mr. Bert Lammond, in England and very ill, sold his Chosica house to the Society for a nominal sum but did not wish his name to be given to the house. It was agreed to name the house after Mr. Lammond's birthplace in Scotland. In 1971 Newtyle House was inaugurated by H.E. Mr. Hugh Morgan.

In 1979 three new rooms, marking the beginning of the reconstruction of Newtyle House, were inaugurated by Mr.  Bill Harding, U.K. Ambassador. Last year, the Benevolent Society acquired property adjacent to Newtyle House, increasing the total land area to 1,500 square meters.

 

Expenses

 

Operating expenses in 1981 came to only 4.87% over the budgeted figure. Praise is due to Mesdames Amy Griffis, Eleanor Eckett, M.B.E., and Grace Ashworth for the efficiency with which expenses of Newtyle House (operating expenses increased by only 29% as compared to the acknowledged cost-of-living increase of 75%).

Response by the Community has been encouraging, particularly the Highland Games held at San Silverstre School. Eleven people received continua assistance throughout 1981 seven of whom are permanent residents of Newtyle House. The efforts of al organizers and contributors to fundraising events have been most appreciated by the Committee.

It is expedient that every member of the Commonwealth Community of Peru be reminded that Benevolent Society is a medium through which the Community has created a considerable asset ensuring that the less fortunate among u have been and will continue to be properly cared for.