Charity mourns Rodney Powell MBE

Date posted: 30th August 2020

Rodney PowellIt is with huge sadness we announce that our trustee, former Chairman and friend, Rodney Powell MBE, passed away on Friday 25 September.

Rodney, Thomas Pocklington’s great nephew, was a trustee at the charity for 37 years from 1983 to the present time, of which 26 were as Chair.

Charles Colquhoun, CEO at Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT), said: “It is a real loss to the charity in terms of his contribution to its governance but more so for staff and board members personally. Rodney was an incredibly warm person and he will be sorely missed. Our thoughts and condolences are with his wife and family.”

Rodney was extremely proud of his family’s involvement in the founding and running of the charity. His great-grandfather worked with Thomas Pocklington during his lifetime, as did his grandfather Albert, who managed Thomas Pocklington’s estate before the charity was created. Rodney’s mother, father and late brother were all trustees of Thomas Pocklington Trust.

Mervyn Williamson, who took over chairmanship from Rodney in 2019, said: “Rodney was our colleague and friend and we will all miss him terribly. He leaves behind a great legacy through his involvement in the governance and management of TPT and we will continue his work to improve the lives of blind and partially sighted people.”

Rodney was awarded an MBE in this year’s New Year’s Honours for his services to blind and partially sighted people as part of the work of TPT. At the time of this announcement, he said: “There have been many important milestones in TPT’s history, but the main satisfaction is seeing how the legacy left by Thomas Pocklington has been put to work in so many different ways over the years.

“We are living in very different times now to when the charity was first constituted, and I am proud how TPT has adapted its work to the changing needs of blind and visually impaired people today, working alongside them and our partnership organisations to deliver mutually agreed outcomes.

“I am also proud that TPT has remained an independent charity since its foundation and that at the same time it is faithful to its original overall purpose which is to support blind and partially sighted people, just as our benefactor, Thomas Pocklington, wished.”


For further information or images please contact: Penny Wilkinson, Thomas Pocklington Trust, 07974 578 637.

Editors’ Notes

About Thomas Pocklington Trust

Thomas Pocklington Trust is a national charity dedicated to enabling and empowering blind and partially sighted people of all ages to live the life they want to lead. We are committed to increasing awareness and understanding of their needs and aspirations and to working with partners to develop and implement services which meet these needs and improve lives. This includes:

  • Acting as an advocate and positive change agent for blind and partially sighted people.
  • Creating opportunities for blind and partially sighted people seeking employment.
  • Enabling opportunities and supporting blind and partially sighted people whilst in and entering education.
  • Facilitating the voice and encouraging self-determination of blind and partially sighted people.
  • Being an effective grant funder based on our knowledge of the sector.

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