The name ‘University of Withywood’ originates from our founder Anton Bantock’s home in Withywood, south Bristol, United Kingdom. After early retirement from teaching History in 1987, he converted his small bungalow into an open house where lectures, exhibitions, summer plays and mock award ceremonies took place. All events at the University of Withywood raised money for The Sponsorship Fund. This evolved over the years and continued up until Anton passed away in 2015, aged 82. You can see many pictures from these events on his facebook tribute page. 

In 2003 he was awarded an MBE for his charitable work in his community here in Withywood and his efforts abroad with The Sponsorship Fund. The idea of The Sponsorship Fund had begun many years before when Anton had started travelling the world in 1963. After visiting the Middle East, Africa and Asia he encountered many young people eager to continue their education so he began to sponsor first one, then two, then ultimately many more from his own pocket. You can read the entire story in The History of The Sponsorship Fund here. 

As Anton was the main instigator in the running of The Sponsorship Fund we could have decided to close it down as it had achieved so much during his lifetime. However his humble attitude towards helping young people is a huge inspiration to anyone who would like to follow in similar footsteps. To honour his hard work, persistence and ultimately his success we will continue this good cause with the same principles and ethos. On this website you can read about our individual success stories and the school we help found in India, you can also download Anton’s artwork via donation to the Sponsorship Fund! 

  • Anton Bantock Watercolour