£57,500 donation from Scientologists

The Friends of Crowborough Hospital have accepted a £57,500 donation from the Church of Scientology.

The BBC revealed the Queen Victoria Hospital Charity received a £50,000 gift from the ChurchCrowboroughLife understands the QVH was one of a number of organisations, also including the Friends, to be sent a donation following the Saint Hill Charity Gala Concert last month.

Chantal Wilson, Chairman Friends of Crowborough Hospital, said:

Our charitable aims are to raise as much money as possible to support the hospital.  It would be contrary to our charitable objectives to refuse a donation given without conditions.  We are grateful for the generosity of all our donors.

The Church hold their Gala each October at Saint Hill Manor, the former home of L Ron Hubbard, the founder of Scientology.  There are collections buckets at the free events for local organisations, mainly in the East Grinstead area.  Members of the Scientology community live at Walsh Manor in Crowborough.

In addition to the Queen Victoria Hospital and the Friends of Crowborough Hospital, money was also collected this year for the East Grinstead Lions Club, the Chequer Mead Theatre and East Grinstead Fire Brigade.  It is understood the Church tops-up the amount of money donated by attendees.  Each of the organisations were approached for a response.

West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service told CrowboroughLife they refused their donation:

West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service politely declined a recent offer of a donation from the Church of Scientology.  Members have, in the past, visited our fire station at East Grinstead and on one occasion left Easter Eggs.
Some of our crews have also used the Saint Hill site for operational training purposes.

The East Grinstead and District Lions said they do not disclose the source of donations.

Will Perkins General Manager at Chequer Mead said:

Chequer Mead Theatre is grateful to receive donations and grants from a variety of sources to support its work throughout the year.

If you require information about the donations that The Church of Scientology makes to local charities and projects, please may I suggest you get in contact with them directly.

The Queen Victoria Hospital NHS Trust said their Charitable Fund supports the hospital’s ground-breaking work in reconstructive surgery and burns care:

QVH Charity received a donation of £50,000 in October 2017 from members of the Church of Scientology.  The decision to accept this donation has been considered in the context of all relevant guidelines and, as with all donations, it will be included in the QVH Charity accounts which are submitted to the Charity Commission.

The Church of Scientology were been approached for information about the donations following the Gala events held in East Grinstead.

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