Supporting The Matthew

Supporting The Matthew

The Matthew of Bristol Trust is a wholly not-for-profit charity – all money raised goes directly to maintaining the ship so that people can continue to visit her and learn about her rich history, old and new.

We couldn’t do this without the support we receive from our crew and the public (scroll down to read more about the aims of the charity). Here’s how you can help preserve this unique piece of Bristol's national and international heritage:


Please visit our fundraising page for more information about how you can make an online donation, or even donate for free while you shop! If you're visiting The Matthew, you can make a cash donation. You'll see a collection box by the mast as you enter and leave the ship.


The Matthew literally depends on its volunteers – our fantastic crew –  to give up their spare time to act as guides, to crew for our trips, and to help with the maintenance work to keep her shipshape and looking great. We are currently at capacity in our volunteer team, but if you send your details to we will contact you when a space becomes available.

Book with us

Whether you join us for one of our popular public trips or choose to hire us as your celebration venue, you will be making a direct contribution to the support of The Matthew and the maintenance of an internationally significant part of Bristol’s maritime heritage. Along with the volunteers and the crew, our commercial income will help to preserve the ship for future generations.

Buy a gift voucher

If you're looking for a unique present for the person who has everything – or you fancy treating yourself to a trip at a later date – we have gift vouchers available for any amount, valid for two years from the date of purchase (minimum spend £10).

Head on over to our gift voucher page for more information.

Be imaginative!

We’re always open to suggestions as to how people and businesses can help us out, either through sponsorship or shared events – the National Trust has even donated a spare mast from the Tyntesfield estate and is very kindly storing it for us for when we eventually need it! If you have any ideas, then please get in touch so we can talk further.

The Aims of the Charity

1) To acquire, repair, fit out, maintain, enhance and preserve the replica medieval caravel known as The Matthew as a ship of historic interest, and to place the vessel on display alongside a berth, quay, dock or wharf accessible to the public;

2) To provide educational and training facilities on The Matthew while berthed or on voyages for persons of all ages and capabilities by the preservation, operation and charter of The Matthew as a seaworthy vessel;

3) To advance education in: 

  • the local and national history and heritage associated with The Matthew, the explorer John Cabot and the exploration and settlement of the New World, including Newfoundland and Labrador
  • maritime history and archaeology
  • shipbuilding and nautical construction skills
  • seamanship, sailing skills and seafaring crafts.