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The Trust


A campaign group was established in 2002 to halt the proposed private sell-off of the building.

The Severndroog Castle Building Preservation Trust (SCBPT) was officially formed in 2003, established as a limited company by guarantee (No. 04641883).

The trust then became a charity in 2008 (No. 1127071).

Aims & Objectives

The aims and objectives of the trust/charity are:


  • Saving Severndroog Castle from being sold off to private developers, to the benefit of the people of the Royal Borough of Greenwich and the nation.

  • Preserving the historical, architectural and constructional heritage of the castle and its environment.

  • Promoting the historical, architectural and constructional interest of the castle.

  • Raising awareness and educating the public to the significance of the castle.


The Board

The current board consists of the following trustees:


Ms Carol Golding, Ms Kaljit Schut, Ms Mary Bright, Dr Tony Hayes, Mr Robert Hayes, Mr Steve Mann, Mr Neil Emmerson & Dr Zuleika Beaven.


The board directors/trustees/members have a wide range of experience and expertise including campaigning, managing charitable trusts, project management, accountancy, local and national history, environmental work, charity finance, fundraising as well as membership in many local community groups in South East London.

Past Contributors

The trust acknowledges the work of past campaigners / board members and thanks them for their dedication and support:


Mr Paul Townrow, Ms Pauline Denny, Mr Andrew Bullivant, Mr Stephen Crow, Mr Spencer Drury, Tony Nickson, David Mears, Susan Bullivant, Steve Daly, Kathryn Dean, David Edwards, David Goodfellow,  Barry Gray, Christine Gray, Lesley Gray, Gwen Knighton, Paula Malpeli, Vic Morgan, Danny Nicol, Denise Ostick, Anette Petersen, Anji Petersen, the late Councillor Dermot Poston, Joe Raftery, Jack Vaughn, Janice White, Dave Wright, John Large of Large Associates (adviser to the board) and Gauri Yennawar.

The Castle & Colonialism

We have launched a project to ‘Re-examine, Reflect, and Re-imagine’ the history of Severndroog and the significance of the castle in the community. We welcome the participation of all voices and perspectives in the community.  


Severndroog Castle was originally built to celebrate the life of Sir William James, a commander in the Bombay Marine and later a director of the British East India Company. As a result, the castle has a connection to the colonisation and exploitation of India. This is a complex history that we have tried to engage with and one that we feel it is important to make more explicit, ensuring we provide opportunities for challenging conversations. 


In particular, the narrative around Sir William James’ victory at Suvarnadurg over Tulaji Angre is one we would like to facilitate more people to explore. In orthodox accounts, Tulaji Angre is depicted as a pirate for raiding British ships whereas revisionist interpretations see Tulaji as a formidable naval commander protecting Indian waters from invasive naval powers.  


Whilst Severndroog’s colonial past may explain it’s origins, it does not define the history of the building. Since being saved by the community, the Castle has been a place for all to explore, a place of education, and a place that welcomes everyone. 


The vision of the trustees, staff and volunteers is that the castle continues to serve the community and play its role in fostering informed debate about its past.  

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