Due to the impact of the Covid-19 outbreak, we have suspended our usual application processes for all grant programmes. Details of funding priorities for a Covid-19 Recovery Fund will be published on our website in July.

What we do

Major initiatives

Alongside our grant-making and thought leadership work, the Foundation sometimes undertakes major initiatives, either independently or in partnership with other organisations. These often involve a significant investment by the Foundation of both funds and resources.

Golden Mede

Golden Mede is a new high-quality housing development in Waddesdon comprising 75 new homes.

The project is devised and managed by The Rothschild Foundation with architects C.F. Møller. The Rothschild Family have been a part of Waddesdon life for 150 years and have an ongoing commitment to its healthy and prosperous future. Golden Mede is therefore rooted in the past but firmly looking to the future.

The Illuminated River

The Illuminated River is a major public art project, using light art to illuminate many of the bridges across the River Thames in London.

Once complete, it will be longest, permanent public art commission in the world at 2.5 miles in length. The project was developed through a collaboration between the Rothschild Foundation, the Mayor of London and a large number of stakeholders along the Thames.

The Waddesdon Bequest

A major grant was made to the British Museum to create a new gallery for the Waddesdon Bequest.

The Bequest is a collection of nearly 300 objects that was accumulated by Baron Ferdinand and by his father, Baron Anselm, and was intended to rival those put together by Renaissance European rulers and princes.

The Waddesdon Bequest Gallery at the British Museum - Glass cases holding Renaissance treasures in the Waddesdon Bequest room at the British Museum


The Butrint Foundation was founded in 1993 by Lord Rothschild and Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover with the aim of preserving, conserving and developing the Butrint site in Albania.

The Foundation oversaw archaeological excavations at Butrint between 1997 and 2004 the main findings relate to a substantial Roman settlement but there are also buildings from late-antiquity that have been discovered.