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NDPCHS sometimes has access to funds that can be made available to staff for the following purposes:

  • Bridging, for those who are ‘between grants’.
  • Salary top-up, for those who are recovering the bulk of their salary but who, for a finite period, are seeking a ‘top-up’ from the Department.
  • Underwrites, for those who expect their salaries to be fully recovered from grants but are seeking support in the interim, usually while the outcome of a grant application is awaited.
  • Maternity and shared parental leave in cases where this cannot be funded from other sources.

Background and context

NDPCHS seeks external funding for these purposes and is responsible to its funders for their use, with a requirement to report annually on expenditure on named individuals against certain permitted purposes.

Funding is allocated annually from 1 April to 31 March, and is not a certain funding stream for future years. In allocating bridging funding, underwrites and top-ups, therefore, it is not possible to commit to funds beyond 31 March.


The Head of Administration, together with the HR Manager and Senior Finance Manager, undertake regular reviews of those coming to the end of their fixed-term contracts; any ACLs/DPhils coming to the end of their training; and those known to be planning to take maternity or shared parental leave. Where they know the relevant staff member to be eligible (see ‘Criteria’ below), they will discuss with the Head of Department and line manager as appropriate in order to consider whether this funding can be used.

Line managers can request funding for these purposes for staff in their teams from the Head of Administration in the first instance. To do so, please send an email setting out how the individual meets the criteria below. This will be shared with the Head of Department so that an informed decision can be made.

Data on those funded in this way, together with the outcome of any requests for such funding, is provided to the Department’s Finance, Resources and General Purposes Committee for information.


Criteria specific to each category of funding is below. Funding for the purpose of bridging, top-up or underwriting can only be provided once. Funding for maternity or shared parental leave could be provided for more than one leave instance if required.

Bridging funding

  • You must have submitted applications for grants, or be costed on grants submitted by other PIs, which will together recover your salary in full.
  • These applications must be judged to have a reasonable chance of success. In the absence of other information, past success rates will be taken as an indicator of potential future success.
  • In exceptional circumstances, it may be possible to provide bridging funding for an individual who does not have grant applications in the pipeline but who has clear and defined plans to submit applications for future funding and who is judged to be reasonably likely to succeed.

Salary top-up

  • You must be majority funded on grants and have a clear strategy to be fully funded in the foreseeable future, with applications in the pipeline to achieve this.


  • You must have submitted applications for grants, or be costed on grants submitted by other PIs, which will together recover your salary in full
  • The outcome of these applications must be due by the time your current funding ends, so that the request is for funding for a finite period in the event that the outcome is delayed or the application is unsuccessful.

Maternity and shared parental leave

  • Funding can support either the salary of the person on leave or the maternity cover post (but not both)
  • Staff funded on the BRC are asked first to apply for BRC Research Capability Funding before approaching the Department.