The Harpur Trust Modern Slavery Statement

This statement applies to all activities of The Harpur Trust (referred to in this statement as ‘The Trust’), including all schools within its legal entity (Bedford School, Bedford Modern School, Bedford Girls’ School, Pilgrims Pre-Preparatory School).


For over 450 years The Harpur Trust has been inspiring and supporting the people of Bedford to help them improve their lives. We give grants to local community projects, we support, provide and promote education, we look after older people in our almshouses and other accommodation and we make social investments.

Over 1,100 people work for The Harpur Trust, either at one of our four schools or in the main office.

Our schools. We own, manage and support the four, independent Harpur Trust Schools, which, between them, educate over 3000 pupils per year:

  • Bedford Girls’ School – a day school for girls aged 7-18
  • Bedford Modern School – a day school for boys and girls aged 7-18
  • Bedford School – a boarding and day school for boys aged 7-18
  • Pilgrims Preparatory School – a nursery and prep school for boys and girls aged 3 months to 7 years


Our grantmaking. Supporting our community by giving grants to local projects is core to what we do. Over the past 10 years, we have given over £11 million in grants to projects based in and around Bedford. This money helped local organisations and individuals to make a difference to their own lives or those of others in the local area.

Our almshouses. We have been providing Almshouses in Bedford for over 200 years. Today we have accommodation available at the Wixams retirement village through our partnership with ExtraCare Charitable Trust (due to open by 2019), and places at three other developments across the town. Our residents enjoy an independent lifestyle with the benefit of knowing help is close to hand whenever they need it.


The Trust considers that modern slavery encompasses:

  • Human trafficking;
  • Forced work, through mental or physical threat;
  • Being owned or controlled by an employer through mental or physical abuse of the threat of abuse;
  • Being dehumanised, treated as a commodity or being bought or sold as property;
  • Being physically constrained or to have restriction placed on freedom of movement.



The Trust acknowledges its responsibilities in relation to tackling modern slavery and commits to complying with the provisions in the Modern Slavery Act 2015. The Trust does not enter into business with any other organisation, in the United Kingdom or abroad, which knowingly supports or is found to involve itself in slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour. No labour provided to the Trust in the pursuance of the provision of its own services is obtained by means of slavery or human trafficking. The Trust strictly adheres to the minimum standards required in relation to its responsibilities under the relevant employment legislation.


We have zero tolerance approach to modern slavery and human trafficking. We are committed to acting ethically and with integrity in all our business dealings and relationships and to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure modern slavery is not taking place anywhere in our own business or in any of our supply chains. We expect all those in our supply chain and contractors to comply with our values.


In general, the Trust considers its exposure to slavery/human trafficking to be relatively limited. Nonetheless, it has taken steps to ensure that such practices do not take place in its business nor the business of any organisation that supplies goods and/or services to it.


The Trust has not, to its knowledge, conducted any business with another organisation, which has been found to have involved itself with modern slavery. In accordance with section 54(4) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015, the Trust has taken the following steps to ensure that modern slavery is not taking place:

  • With regards to national or international supply chains, we expect these entities to have suitable anti-slavery and human trafficking policies and processes.
  • We have systems in place to encourage the reporting of concerns and the protection of whistle blowers


We use the following measures to check how effective we have been to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in any part of our business or supply chains:

  • Right to work checks completed at recruitment stage.
  • Ensure minimum employment age adhered to, in line with the relevant legislation.
  • Always apply national minimum wage thresholds, in line with the relevant legislation.
  • Regular contact with material suppliers including their understanding of, and compliance with, our expectations.

This statement is made in pursuance of Section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2010 and will be reviewed for each financial year.

David Russell

Chief Executive Officer

22 August 2018