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Publicly raised fundraising income fell £92m for top 100 charities in 2018/19

Publicly raised fundraising income fell £92m for top 100 charities in 2018/19

Pre-Covid-19, 2018/19 saw publicly raised fundraising income fall by £92 million for the top 100 fundraising charities, along with the first drop for total charity income in five years, according to the Top 100 Fundraisers Spotlight report.

The latest edition of the Top 100 Fundraisers Spotlight, published by The Fundraiser and drawing on data from Charity Financials, highlights fundraising trends and assesses income growth by cause and causal area.

Publicly raised fundraising income to the top 100 charities in 2018/19 totalled £5.84 billion: 2.7% down from the previous year’s £5.9 billion total and a drop of £92 million.

Income generation from statutory funding streams also saw a large annual drop, of 14.8%. This funding was worth £908 million to the sector in 2018/19: its lowest level for 6 years.

However, there was a 3% increase in income from charitable activities, which reached an all-time high at just over £1 billion.

‘All other’ activity, which includes trading, lottery, investment and miscellaneous other, reached £1.52 billion, down 0.2% on the previous year.

Total income for the top 100 charities, at £9.36 billion, was worth a similar amount to 2015/16, with the annual growth rate declining to -2.4% in 2018/19: the first drop in five years.

48 of the top 100 charities saw total income decline, with a further 12 just keeping pace with inflation. 47 of the top 100 achieved modest growth in fundraising income, while success stories included Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, which increased its fundraising two years running, and Great Ormond Street Hospital and Oxfam GB, which both recorded legacy incomes.

Report author Cathy Pharoah commented:

“In a period of faltering global growth, with the effects of the COVID-19 crisis difficult to predict, income growth is likely to prove an elusive target for some time.”

This is the fifth Top 100 Fundraisers Spotlight report, which is part of a series of free reports from Wilmington Charities.


Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

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