Questions about Leaving a Legacy

1. How will my gift be used?

Legacies are usually unrestricted gifts, allowing us to use the funds wherever the need is greatest at that particular time.


If you have a particular area of interest that you’d like to benefit please contact us to discuss your intentions. We’ll always try to accommodate people’s wishes but sometimes leaving a gift to a specific project can cause difficulties, especially if we’re no longer working in that part of the county by the time the testator passes away.

2. Is a legacy the same as a gift in a Will?

Yes, both terms refer to any gift made in your Will.


3. Why would I want to leave a gift to the Wildlife Trust in my Will?

There are many answers to this question, since making a Will is highly personal. Common reasons include:
  • a desire to preserve wildlife and natural places for future generations
  • a way of giving more generously than possible in your lifetime
  • reducing or eliminating inheritance tax liability

4. What wording should I use to designate a gift to the Trust?

When including a legacy to charity it’s important to specify the charity’s registered name, address and charity number.
For the Sussex Wildlife Trust these are:


Registered name: Sussex Wildlife Trust

Registered address: Woods Mill, Shoreham Road, Henfield, West Sussex, BN5 9SD

Registered charity number: 207005

We recommend the following wording:

“I give the Sussex Wildlife Trust [the sum of £x /a x% share of my residuary estate] for its general charitable purposes and I declare that the receipt of the treasurer or other proper officer shall be full and sufficient discharge for the said legacy.”

5. Should I leave an amount of money or a percentage of my estate?

It’s your choice. Every gift is welcome, and even a small share of your residuary estate can have a great impact on our conservation or education work. If you choose to leave a fixed sum of money to the Trust, do bear in mind that inflation may decrease its value over time.


6. What effect will my gift have on my inheritance tax status?

Any gift you give to charity in your Will is deducted before your estate is valued for tax purposes. This means that a gift to the Trust will reduce the amount of inheritance tax your beneficiaries will need to pay. Some people even choose to donate the value of their estate above the inheritance tax threshold to charity – meaning that no inheritance tax at all is payable.


7. I’ve already made my Will. How can I change it to include a gift to the Trust?

You won’t need to rewrite your Will unless you want to. A qualified solicitor can draft an amendment (called a codicil). It is a simple and inexpensive to make change to benefit wildlife. Do ask your solicitor about this.


8. Can I leave land or property to the Trust?

Yes. Some of the land we manage was bequeathed to us in a Will, but if we are to look after the land properly there is a management cost to consider. For this reason it is best to also include an endowment in your Will if possible to help us in the ongoing conservation work that may be required.


9. How much does it cost to write a Will?

Many people worry about the expense of writing a will but it’s a good investment in your family’s future. A simple Will can cost as little as £70 and a mirror will (for couples) can be written for around £120.


We wouldn’t advise you to try writing your own will. A professional can help you consider all eventualities and allow for different scenarios. It’s all too easy to overlook something or make a mistake that could invalidate your will or cause delays, disputes and heartbreak when the time comes to administer the estate.

So that we remain impartial, we are not able to recommend a solicitor. For help finding a local solicitor please refer to the following organisations:

10. Can Sussex Wildlife Trust act as Executors of my Will?

Unfortunately, we are not allowed to act as executors.