Our history and legal structure

Take a journey through the 80+ year history of Brunelcare.

The Old People’s Welfare Committee was founded during the Bristol Blitz in 1941. Today, as Brunelcare, we provide housing, care and support to more than 2,000 people across Bristol, Somerset and South Gloucestershire. Find out more about our history and legal structure below.


Committee founded in Bristol in October 1941, called the Old People’s Welfare Committee (OPWC), its key priority being to support Bristol’s older people in the aftermath of WWII to ‘keep them warm, keep them fed, keep them alive’.



A letter arrived from the Secretary for the Colonies: the people of Uganda had raised £1,000 for charitable work in England and it had been agreed it should be spent on West Town House. The mansion was renovated and renamed ‘Uganda Hostel’ (see photo), a ‘home for the able-bodied to live independently’.


Bristol Older Peoples Welfare (BOPW) was incorporated, and acquired several houses in Bristol, meeting its objective to help find accommodation for older people.



Thanks to extra donations from local councils, and a large volunteer task force deliveries of hot meals increased from 16,000 hot meals in 1959, to 2,500 meals a week on 31 routes from 1959 to 1966.


From 1964 onwards, BOPW carried out an ambitious extension plan, building sheltered homes throughout Bristol, and by 1973 was providing accommodation for over 900 people. The charity also registered as a Housing Association at this time.


Bristol Older Peoples Welfare is renamed ‘Bristol Age Care’.


In response to the increasing age and support needs of their residents, the charity opened Saffron Court (not Saffron Gardens), St Johns Court and Robinson House. These were a new generation of care homes and St Johns Court was sheltered housing with warden-call support – an innovation. All encouraged more independence for residents.



In 1997, Robinson House care home opened its doors to people living with dementia, encouraging them to develop ‘Dementia Care mapping’ and changing the way care teams responded to those living with dementia.



The charity is renamed ‘Brunelcare’, to recognise its wider reach across the region. Brunelcare continues to provide services across Bristol, South Gloucestershire and Somerset.



Brunelcare was awarded £7 million to redevelop Saffron Gardens as a centre of ‘dementia excellence’.



Orchard Grove reablement centre opened. The first dedicated centre in Bristol providing short-stay reablement to people discharged from Bristol hospitals.


Little Heath Care and Support, a purpose-built care home and reablement centre, opens on April 1st 2020. The versatility of this development enables Brunelcare to offer a variety of care and support to meet the changing requirements of care provision going forward.



Brunelcare celebrates its 80th anniversary. The charity now provides housing, care and support to over 2,000 people living across Bristol, South Gloucestershire, and Somerset.

Brunelcare’s legal structure

Brunelcare is a company limited by guarantee without share capital (registered company number 601847) and a registered charity (registration number 201555).

The charitable objectives of Brunelcare, as set out in its Articles of Association are:

  • The business of providing and managing housing and care, including Social Housing and providing assistance to help house people and associated facilities, amenities and services for people of lesser means or for the care of aged, disabled (whether physically or mentally) or chronically sick people; and
  • Any other charitable object that can be carried out from time to time by a charity or provider of care registered with the Care Quality Commission and provider of social housing registered with the Regulator.

To fulfill the above objectives, Brunelcare is registered with the Regulator for Social Housing and provides social housing across a range of sites in the Bristol area. It is also registered with the Care Quality Commission as a provider of care homes, extra care housing and a range of community services in Bristol, Somerset and South Gloucestershire. Further details about the care Brunelcare provides and the types of housing and the areas where they are provided can be found by visiting the Locations and the Care and Support sections of our website.

Articles of Association are one of the constitutional documents of a company which set out its basic management and administrative structure. The Articles are a public document open to inspection at Companies House.

Brunelcare’s Articles of Association were reviewed during 2020-21 and a revised set of Articles were approved by Special Resolution on 28 January 2021, following approval by the Charity Commission. A copy of Brunelcare’s current Articles of Association are available here:

Articles of Association

As far as possible, the draft Articles have been based on the Model Articles of Association for a Charitable Company as issued by the Charity Commission in August 2014 and updated in January 2017.

Further information regarding Brunelcare as a Company and a Charity are available here:

Companies House     Charity Commission

Our latest news

15th Nov 2023

Gary thanks Glastonbury Care Home colleagues for saving his life

Gary Smith, who is part of the team at our Glastonbury care home, has thanked colleagues who helped save his life after he suffered a heart attack while at work.

2nd Nov 2023

Little Heath Reablement & Support celebrates launch of new service

Today our Little Heath Reablement & Support Centre held a celebration event to officially launch our new service. Guests, colleagues and members of the community came together this afternoon to mark

14th Sep 2023

Brunelcare colleague apprenticeship success!

We're so proud that Brunelcare colleague Mark Townsend has completed his Health, Safety and Environment apprenticeship, achieving a distinction!