Aberdeenshire Council has decided it will “no longer support” a teacher training trust after its historic links to the slave trade were exposed.
Local authority bosses have decided not to “facilitate” the Dick Bequest in future, including by removing application forms from its website.
It is cutting ties with the £1.7 million fund after we revealed research which showed how it was created from profits James Dick made from slavery before he died in 1828.
The money has been used to offer grants for teacher training and school equipment in Aberdeenshire and Moray for almost two centuries.
But the historians who traced the origins of the bequest, David Alston and Donald Morrison, have called on the Scottish Government to send the remaining cash back to Jamaica.
They found that Dick had a business partnership with Robert Milligan, whose statue was removed last year by the Museum of London from its plinth in London’s Docklands.
Before Holyrood ministers rule on its future, Aberdeenshire Council has now become the first associated body to withdraw its backing from the Dick Bequest.
Council leader Andy Kille said: “I had a meeting last week with the director of education and the two trustees that come from Aberdeenshire Council.
“We decided that we would no longer support that trust.
“We have decided that we will no longer facilitate anything to do with this trust, as a council.”
The council does not have the power to stop its teachers from submitting applications for grants, but it will no longer promote, encourage or assist with the process.
We have decided that we will no longer facilitate anything to do with this trust, as a council.”
The Dick Bequest trust is run by 10 governors, of which five are elected by the Society of Writers to the Signet, two by the senate of Aberdeen University, and three by Aberdeenshire and Moray councils.
Moray Council is also thought to be considering its options in relation to the trust.
The trust’s governors have previously said they do not have the authority to change its use because its “purposes and procedures” are directed by central government.
Last week, the Scottish Government said it was “actively exploring” the issues raised by the historians about the Dick Bequest.