Leaving a Legacy

‘Honour to the brave allies’, 1915, George Eastman House Collection

Remembering the RHS in your Will

Golden bulla recto, treaty of perpetual peace between England and France, 1527. National Archives.

Golden bulla recto, treaty of perpetual peace between England and France, 1527. National Archives.

Thank you for considering leaving a legacy to the Royal Historical Society. Your family and loved ones will naturally be your first priority, but you could also support the next generation of historians by leaving something to us. If you already have a will, a simple change could be made by adding a codicil.

If you would like to discuss your wishes in confidence please do feel free to write to us at the address below or send an email to Dr Sue Carr at s.carr@royalhistsoc.org. You would be under no obligation to take your enquiry any further, but if you do wish to remember us in your will you should always seek the advice of a solicitor.

 Inheritance Tax Benefits

There are benefits to your estate if you leave a legacy to the Royal Historical Society as we have charitable status. Our Charity Number is 206888. You can reduce the taxable assets of your estate and cut the amount of inheritance tax due.  You can find more information about the Government’s Charity 10 legislation on the HMRC website

There are 4 different types of legacy:

 A specific gift of money – Pecuniary

This is a simple legacy of a specified sum of money. If you are considering making this type of gift you might want to make it inflation proof. According to the Office for National Statistics, a gift of £1,000 written into a Will in January 1980 would have been worth £300 by June 2007. This can be avoided by linking it to the Retail Prices Index or setting aside a percentage of your estate for the Royal Historical Society.

 The residue of your estate – Residuary

The residue of your estate is the value remaining once all pecuniary legacies, debts, fees and other charges have been met. You might decide to leave the whole or a part of the residue to the Royal Historical Society. The advantage of a residuary legacy is that its value will not be eroded by inflation.

Gifts in kind

A legacy need not be in the form of money. You may wish instead to leave specific assets such as property, stocks and shares, works of art or other valuables.


This is a legacy which requires the fulfilment of a certain condition, or event or specific criteria: for example, an individual may leave their entire estate to their spouse to use in their life time, and on their death the bequest reverts to charity.