The Civil Service Retirement Fellowship is a national charity dedicated to helping former civil servants and their dependents make the most of their retirement.


In an article entitled 'A Pension Is Not Enough' written in the early 1960s Douglas Houghton MP highlighted the need for an organisation that offered retired civil servants an arena for friendship and companionship. His idea was supported and taken up by J P Wolstenholme, the then General Secretary of The Civil Service Benevolent Fund and on 9th April 1965 the Civil Service Retirement Fellowship was founded and opened its first branches in Guildford, Birmingham and the Solent area.

Our Work today

Friendship and support remain at the forefront of our work today. We provide a range of services that include two national befriending schemes to help combat loneliness in later life, local community groups (providing educational speakers and leisure activities) and we are on hand to offer information, advice and signposting to a wide range of other supportive organisations.

Patron, President, Vice Presidents and Civil Service Champion

Aside from our Board of Directors, the CSRF also has the following people who support our aims and objectives:

Elizabeth Symons, Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean, PC

(Currently vacant)

Sir Alex Allan KCB
Paul Gray CB
Peter Jones CB
Keith Lawrance
Roi Milburn
Ian Rathjen FCA
Jenny Rowe CB

Civil Service Champion
Elizabeth Gardiner CB, First Parliamentary Counsel and Permanent Secretary of the Government in Parliament Group in the Cabinet Office

Pictures above: (left) The creation of the CSRF on 9th April 1965 (right) The CSRF stand at Northern Ireland Civil Service Live in 2017