Our most active President was Noël Coward, for 22 years. The charity then continued to fund children, but through grants. We were led for 65 years by Richard (Lord) Attenborough, and we were called The Actors’ Charitable Trust from 1986 to 2012.

Orphans network

ACT is privileged still to be in touch with many of the children who lived at our orphanage in the 1940s and 50s. We’d love to hear from you if you were at Langley Place or Silverlands, or at the Rutland Gate hostel or Watford houses. There’s no pressure to meet up with other people and we can keep your name confidential if you wish. 

If you do want to meet others, we will do our best to put you in touch with people you knew. We have also had wonderful reunions. Please telephone Robert Ashby at ACT 020 7636 7868 or email robert@actorschildren.org

Our timeline

The charity was founded in 1896 as the Actors’ Orphanage Fund with Sir Henry Irving as President.  It raised money until, in 1906, we could open our first orphanage for actors’ children, in Croydon.  The driving force was Mrs Kittie Carson, the wife of the editor of The Stage.

A detailed history of the charity is available free of charge on request, by email or post. Please contact Robert Ashby: robert@actorschildren.org or 020 7636 7868.

We welcome your support as a member, or your help with fundraising or as a Marathon runner.
Read more about how you can support us.

Here on behalf of somebody else?

We understand it is a big step to contact a charity. If you are looking at this on behalf of an actor friend, please do get in touch by phone or email. There is no need to tell us the actor’s name at this stage. We are friendly and our help is confidential.

Read more about who we are or get in touch for help and support, email robert@actorschildren.org or call 020 7636 7868.