The Knockaloe Charitable Trust

The Knockaloe Charitable Trust

In 2011, as part of the review into Patrick Old School, Alison and Richard Jones developed a proposal to provide Patrick Schoolrooms with a broader ongoing role in order to justify its preservation and also to provide it with a purpose into the future which would also support its use as a Community Building.

With its location opposite Knockaloe Moar farm, the site of the largest ever WW1 internment Camp, the Schoolrooms were ideally situated to tell the stories of the families impacted by civilian internment in WW1, including those who lived in our village.

This was of huge historical interest with the centenary of the first world war due to be commemorated, and so a fitting time to launch a permanent Visitors Centre to provide a central point for visitors into the future, as well as a venue which the Island’s residents and schools can visit to understand this aspect of the Island’s history and the impact it had upon both Patrick village and the Isle of Man. It also seeks to provide a fitting tribute for the 23,000+ residents of the Camp, and a central point for relatives of those residents to seek information about their relative and the camp 100 years later.

As part of our development of the proposal it became clear that, despite a surprising number of visitors to the Island from Europe to see where their relatives were interned, this incredible story is not fully explored in any detail in any venue on the Island and particularly in Patrick, where the camp was situated. Nor is the history of the camp taught in our local schools.  Therefore, in developing the potential for the building to tell this story in an exciting way, developing educational resources and a website that can be accessed by relatives from Europe, this has the potential to provide a huge amount of “added value” both from an educational and tourist/new visitor related basis as well as telling a story of a period of the Island’s history in an interesting way for Island residents.

After it became clear that our huge amounts of work seeking funding from the Isle of Man Government and local Charities, including the lottery would not succeed either due to the magnitude of the project, or because we were doing this on a not-for-profit basis (thus not eligible for Government funding) Alison and Richard realised that the project would only succeed if they funded it themselves.

The work also needed to be secure into the future and so The Knockaloe Charitable Trust was established as a registered Charity.

The Trust holds the exhibition and its artefacts in perpetuity. and also runs the Charity both from its winter office premises at its registered Office of Ash lodge, Patrick Road, Isle of Man IM4 3BR, and from the Schoolrooms in the Summer period when the exhibition is open. All Trustees work is 100% voluntary and the Trust funds two staff members. We are extremely grateful for the donations from Visitors and from descendants and others, as well as a huge amount of voluntary work from absolutely wonderful people from both on and off island.

The Charity’s running costs, ongoing development and collections are all underwritten by the Trustees.

The Team:

Trustee Alison Jones BA Hons, ACA: Visitors Centre, Website and Archive development and Senior Researcher

Alison is a Chartered Accountant, qualifying with Price Waterhouse on the Island. At present the Charity takes most of her time, although she is also Trustee of a major private client Trust and Non-Executive Director of the captive insurance company of London Heathrow Airports (formerly BAA), and Shareholder and Director of two businesses which provided accounting services to a variety of clients based on and off-island over the last 20+ years during which time it has employing up to 18 staff, and included a joint venture with Cains Advocates Limited, providing Accounting Services to Cains Group’s clients.

She has also been: Trustee of The Milntown Trust (for 10 years) and thus experienced with the establishment and management of tourist attractions on the Isle of Man; Treasurer of Culture Vannin (The Manx Heritage Foundation) (for 5 years); Non-executive Director of Radio Manx Limited (Manx Radio), and Chairman of its Audit Committee, (for 15 years);

Her voluntary roles have included assistant leader for the St Johns Brownies, and teaching gardening at St Johns Primary School. With the assistance of the rest of the Committee/Directors, Alison organises various fundraising events for the Schoolrooms.

Trustee Richard Jones BSc, ACA: Treasurer

Richard is a Chartered Accountant, qualifying with KPMG on the Island. Together with Alison he is a Shareholder and is Managing Director of the two accounting services businesses detailed under Alison Jones above, namely Hanover Resources Limited, and Cains Accounting Services Limited.

He is also CEO of Gibbs Amphibians Limited, Director of Flat Technologies Limited, Sydney, Director of Downtown Music Inc, New York, in addition to involvement in a number of other underlying structures for clients.

His voluntary roles include Commissioner of Patrick, and Chairman of the Western Civic Amenity Site.

Rachael Wood: Descendant Liaison and Charity Coordinator

Rachael joined the team in 2014.    

Wilfred Hewson BA:  History graduate from The University of Chester 

Wilfred joined the team in 2019.