Founded in 1998, the Friends of the French Institute Trust is a registered charity (n°1069116).
Since its creation, the trust has supported several key investment projects such as the renovation of Ciné Lumière I and the creation of Ciné Lumière II. It has also been a major actor in the renovation of La Médiathèque, both the Adult’s Library and the Bibliothèque Quentin Blake, as well as in the launch of a digital library, Culturethèque.
Additionally, the Trust brought its support to restore the Institute’ Steinway Grand piano and 1907 Pleyel piano and to renovate the reception rooms, called Les Salons which now accommodate concerts, talks and exhibitions. The Trust has also supported the renovation of the Foyer and the creation of l’Atelier, a dedicated space for school activities.
The Trust has also given its support to the Franco-British fund Diaphonique and to several key cultural events over the years, such as the UK-wide festival FranceDance, the performance of The Damned by la Comédie-Française at the Barbican Centre, Beyond Words Festival and the South Ken Kids Festival.
The Trust is now engaged in the major fundraising campaign of Confluence for the modernisation of the Language Centre.
As part of Confluence, the Trust has contributed to the full redesign and development of the websites of the Institut français du Royaume-Uni and of the Institut français d’Ecosse.
- Vincent Gombault
- Sylvie Bressler
- Thierry Groell
- Sir John Holmes
- Xavier Mayer
- Marc Mourre
- Edward Reed
- Claudine Ripert-Landler
- Sir John Scarlett
- Diane Segalen
- Benoît Verbrugghe
- Trustee ex-officio: Bertrand Buchwalter, Cultural Counsellor to the French Embassy in the UK, Director of the French Institute in the UK