The Sir John Fisher Foundation is an independent charitable trust founded by Sir John Fisher

Founded in 1980 by Sir John Fisher and Lady Maria Fisher, the Sir John Fisher Foundation (the Foundation) is an independent charitable trust continuing the legacy of the Fisher family.

The Foundation’s objective is to distribute income to charitable causes throughout the UK focused on seafarers and the Arts, but with special regard to charitable causes in the following six categories:

  • Maritime
  • Medical and disability
  • Education
  • Music
  • Arts
  • Community

The Sir John Fisher Foundation gives priority to projects that are for the benefit of those living in Barrow-in-Furness and the Furness peninsula, seeking to meet the needs of the vulnerable and disadvantaged, which is where James Fisher and Sons plc is registered and maintains its headquarters.

The Foundation owns over 22% of the company's ordinary share capital, acting independently to distribute the dividend income received from that shareholding and other interests to its chosen charitable causes.

Sir John Fisher

Sir John and Lady Maria Fisher

Sir John Fisher, grandson to the company's founder, became sole proprietor in 1915 and was involved in the business until 1980.

With no immediate family, Sir John gave a substantial proportion of his shares in James Fisher and Sons plc to The Sir John Fisher Foundation, so it could continue his and his wife’s considerable charity work.

Lady Maria Fisher was a famous pre-war opera singer (Maria Elsner). Married to Sir John Fisher in 1947, they jointly established the Foundation. The couple took deep personal interest in many social and charitable organisations within Barrow, giving personal support as well as financial aid.

Learn more about the Fisher family 

Sir John And Lady Fisher 1947
The Sir John Fisher Foundation

If you would like to find out more about the Sir John Fisher Foundation, visit  their website.

James Fisher's newsletter - the Pelican

Providing a regular update of the news and views from across the organisation, Pelican delves you into our stories from the companies and teams themselves, giving you the inside scoop on what we do.