They are the historic bodies that still affect the lives of Aberdeen citizens sometimes hundreds of years after they were set up.
The Aberdeen charitable trusts, of which 97 are affiliated to the council, are bodies that often pre-date our modern welfare state at a time where only the church, wealthy benefactors and the nobility were in a position to help the needy.
Ranging from preserving the city’s heritage, putting on football festivals, paying for school raffle prizes and trips, relieving poverty in Zimbabwe and paying for furniture for care homes, trusts are wide-ranging bodies which have to be governed centrally.
Some are historically constituted charities, others are small bequests from individuals with assets in the trusts ranging from £3.8million to £1.
However, for many of them their futures are in doubt with a mass review to be carried out.
A new report to Monday’s full council meeting updates councillors on the work to wind-up or amalgamate “uneconomic or obsolete” trusts.
Some are so old that the original governance documents are thought to be lost to the mists of time.
However, the local authority still has to run them legally and using proper governance standards.
It is hoped that amalgamation or winding-up these bodies will ultimately save the taxpayer cash in administration fees.
Identified governance failings were a major reason given behind the council’s controversial cutting of cash to the Aberdeen International Youth Festival (AIYF).
In December, the council’s education committee decision to axe its annual £150,000 contribution towards the event and instead put £100,000 into the Year of Young People project.
An appeal to keep the funding going was supported by celebrities, including world-famous percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie and Julian Lloyd Webber.
The registered trust behind the body The Aberdeen Music Festival Trust is now in the process of being wound up.
In June, the Aberdeen Multicultural Centre announced they were now going to run a new nine-day Aberdeen International Festival of Youth Arts (AIFYA) across both the city and Aberdeenshire.
Liberal Democrat group leader Ian Yuill said that for some trusts their administration costs now outstripped their income and the amount they give out.
He added that changes in society over the centuries had also rendered some irrelevant.
He said: “Our general position is that the money that have been placed into the trusts are used for the benefit of the community of Aberdeen and the objectives of the original benefactors while obviously taking into account the changes there have been in society for the past 300 years.
“The key thing here is to ensure the governance structure is in place and that the trusts are in the best position.”
Council co-leader Douglas Lumsden said that amalgamation would be a “sensible move”.
He added: “The main thing is that each of these trusts is costing the council money in administration costs and money to keep them running.
“A lot of them are old and don’t have much money in them, but we still have to pay to keep them running.
“It is really an administrative tidying-up. A lot of these trusts should be amalgamated to save money. It’s a sensible move really.”
The council report adds that any amalgamation or winding up would have to be agreed by any remaining trustees.
List of trusts
The City of Aberdeen Council Guildry and Mortification Funds
Lands of Skene
Lands of Torry
Bridge of Don
Bridge of Dee
Jack Wood Trust
DM Andrew Bequest
Aberdeen City Council Charitable Trusts
Elizabeth H Bain Bequests
Athol Benzie Prize Fund
Edith and David R Bishop Prize Fund
Mina Brooks Memorial Prize
Lucy Cruickshank Prize Fund
Jessie Durno Prize Fund
Mary Durno Prize Fund
Margaret Duthie Memorial Prize Fund
Margaret C Harper Prize Fund
Bessie Heriot Prize Fund
George Mackenzie Prize Fund
Kenneth MacIntosh Bequest
Charles McLeod Trust
William Meston Bursary Fund
John M. Robertson Memorial Prize Fund
Alexander McDonald Bequest
Marguerite McBey Trust
The Aberdeen Music Festival Trust
Aberdeen International Football Festival
Aberdeen Recreational Facilities Trust
M Mowat and G Davidson
Miss Hilda B S Duthie Bequest
Elsie M Byrne
Mrs Vera R E Taylor
Norman Moy Prize
John M Henderson Bequest
Aberdeen Institution for Deaf and Dumb Fund
Corporation Prize Fund
James Findlay Bursary Fund
Duncan B Heriot Prize Fund Aberdeen Academy
Duncan B Heriot Prize Fund Kaimhill
Alexander Kilgour Fund
Logie Pirie Scholarship Fund
Lizzie L Milne Prize Fund
Murray Pictures Prize Fund
Primary and Intermediate Schools Sports Fund
H Shepherd Bequest
MS Smith Prize Fund
St Fittick (Aberdeen) Rotary Club Prize
Mary Thomson Scottish Poetry Prize
William CB Thomson Memorial Fund
Jayne Cable Smart Bequest
Elizabeth MM Laing Prize
Robert Skene Mathew Bequest
Molly Craig Fund
Stewart Reid Memorial Fund
Rose Hip Fund
Alybn- Comforts Fund
Balnagask Home Comforts Fund
Croft House Comforts Fund
Fergus House Comforts Fund
Ferryhill House Comforts Fund
Northfield Comforts Fund
Polmuir Comforts Fund
Rosewell Comforts Fund
Thorngrove Comforts Fund
Westbank Comforts Fund
Westburn Comforts Fund
Friends of Neo Natal Unit
Friends of Balnagask Court
Victoria House Comforts Fund
Donations SW Director
Social Work Department Mental Health Training
Social Work Department Training Fund
Agnes Park Legacy
Dyce Handicapped Children Fund
Lewis J Smith Bequest
Angus Taylor Donations
A McKay Fund
Disabled Living Centre
The Richard Garden Trust
Horizon Amenity Fund
Park House Amenity Fund
MJ Elliot Trust