Thames Explorer Trust

Taking learning to the river

Learning outside the classroom raises standards and improves students’ personal, social and emotional development. The Thames Explorer Trust runs hands on activities for primary and secondary schools so that young people can learn on the foreshore and bank of the River Thames in London.

We’re delighted to support the Thames Explorer Trust with a grant of £24,860. Our grant will allow more schools to take part in Thames Explorer Trust activities by subsidising 43 school trips and 30 coach trips. This subsidy will bring Thames Explorer Trust’s unique learning trips to more pupils in London at a time when budget constraints are making school trips and outings harder. Our grant will also fund a project to improve the trust’s booking process, freeing up staff time for other work.

  • Our school visit subsidies will help around 1200 children get outdoors and explore the river.
  • A survey by the National Foundation for Educational Research in 2023 found that half of school leaders are having to cut school trips and outings.
  • Around 900 children will be able to travel to Thames Explorer Trust’s venues with our school coach subsidies.

A riverside classroom

The Thames Explorer Trust runs school trips at 10 sites across London from Kew to Greenwich. These support national curriculum objectives in geography, history, science, art and citizenship in a truly memorable way. Trips include investigating the history of the settlement of the Thames, collecting and deciphering artefacts found on the foreshore, exploring environmental issues, river formation and GCSE Geography fieldwork.

The Thames Explorer Trust was founded in 1988 by a group of people concerned for the future of the Thames. As well as delivering learning for schools, the trust supports undergraduate and postgraduate students. They also offer guided walks for all ages and a free Thames Explorer Challenge self-guided walk.  

“This grant will afford disadvantaged pupils the opportunity to explore their world, understand their capital and personally connect with their river – the River Thames.”

Simon Clarke, Director, Thames Explorer Trust

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