The book industry charity the Book Trade Charity has announced a merger with the Bookbinders Charitable Society.
The Bookbinders Charitable Society, which was founded in 1830 for employees in the book production and binding trades, will become a full part of the Book Trade Charity, which will retain its name, by the end of the year.
According to a statement from the newly merged charity, the move was taking place to help provide a more effective and efficient service to members, because both organisations catered for book industry professionals.
David Hicks, chief executive of the Book Trade Charity, said the merger had been planned for five years, but the legal process of merger had been completed only by the end of October.
The Book Trade Charity will retain its existing structure and chief executive. A new logo has been created for the charity, which merged with the Matthew Hodder Charitable Trust last year in a bid to expand its offering for young people.
Hicks said the Book Trade Charity had an income of about £500,000 a year. The Bookbinders Charitable Society’s income is about £100,000 a year.
Both organisations have about £1m in reserves and both own housing: the Bookbinders Charitable Society owns 22 properties; the Book Trade Charity owns 36.
The Book Trade Charity has four members of staff, two permanent and two part-time, who will all remain in post. The Bookbinders Charitable Society’s only member of staff, a part-time housing manager, will join the new charity.
The former chairman of the Bookbinders Charitable Society will be appointed to the board of the Book Trade Charity. The Bookbinders Charitable Society’s former treasurer will also join the Book Trade Charity’s finance committee.
No buildings will be sold as part of the merger, and some properties will be upgraded next year at a cost of about £250,000, Hicks said.
Hicks said in a statement: "We hope that the combined strength of these charities will enable more individuals in need to be reached."