Leaving a gift in your Will to The Abbey is possibly the greatest gift you can offer during your lifetime and one that will have long-lasting benefit for the lives of our pupils.

If your estate is liable to Inheritance Tax, the value of your gift will be deducted from your estate before inheritance tax is calculated. So, you can reduce the amount of tax due by donating to The Abbey School.

Please note that some gifts made to charity in the seven years before death are exempt from inheritance tax.

Professional legal advice is always recommended when you are drawing up or changing your will. Free advice is also available from Age Concern and Citizen’s Advice.

HMRC information

There are many types of legacy gifts but some of the most common are listed below:

Residuary legacy

This allows you to leave all or a percentage of your estate after all other bequests have been made and costs paid. This type of legacy aims to safeguard the value of your donation and is particularly beneficial to charities.

Pecuniary legacy

This is a gift of a fixed sum of money. Although this is the simplest type of legacy to administer, the value of the donation may be depleted over time by inflation.

Substitutionary legacy

When considering your Will, you will naturally feel a prime duty to provide for your dependants. However, you may wish to direct that where a gift in favour of any intended recipient is not possible (perhaps because they pre-decease you), the value of the gift would pass to the School instead.

Reversionary/Life Interest legacy

This enables dependants to be first as beneficiaries of the Will. They enjoy the assets during their lifetime and the legacy is passed to the School on their death.

Specific legacy

A particular named item is left as a gift in your Will. This may be stocks or shares, the proceeds of a life insurance policy, a work of art, property, furniture or jewellery.

If you would like to modify an existing Will, you can do so by adding a Codicil. Although this is a straightforward process, it does need to be formally executed and legal advice should be sought.

For your convenience, you can download a Codicil sample here.

If you intend to leave a legacy to The Abbey, we would very much like to hear from you so that we can thank you and welcome you to The Blenheim Society.

You can let us know by completing a legacy pledge form and returning it to Mr Craig Andrew, Head of External Relations at The Abbey School, 17 Kendrick Road, Reading RG1 5DZ or externalrelations@theabbey.co.uk.

This is not a legally binding document; it simply enables us to thank you and to communicate with you appropriately in the future.

There is no obligation for you to tell us any of the details of your legacy, although this can help us ensure your gift is directed according to your wishes.

Each gift and every legacy pledge, large or modest, is very important to The Abbey. We would like to recognise your generosity, unless you request anonymity, in helping transform the future at The Abbey. The Blenheim Society celebrates those who have pledged a legacy to the future.

When you decide to write, update or add a Codicil to your Will you should work with a solicitor to prepare one. Unless your affairs are complex, it need not be expensive and you will have the peace of mind that comes with knowing your wishes are clear. A solicitor will be able to advise you on legal aspects, the different ways in which you can make sure all your beneficiaries are provided for – including leaving a donation to a charity – as well as ensuring that the Will is correctly drawn up in law.

Here is a list of frequently asked questions about legacy gifts.

When you decide to write, update or add a Codicil to your Will you should work with a solicitor to prepare one.

To discuss further how you would like your legacy designated and recognised, or if you have any additional questions regarding your legacy, please contact Mr Craig Andrew, Head of External Relations at externalrelations@theabbey.co.uk or 0118 987 2256.