How, I wonder, was the last year for you? And I wonder what the next 12 months holds for each of us?
Covid, the cost of living, the death of our beloved Queen and Royal Patron, a new Prime Minister, crisis in the Ukraine, floods in Pakistan. What a year of change. And these changes bring future uncertainty for each of us.
Many donors have told me that going for local walks during Covid has resulted in a much closer relationship with their church. They had time to wander and time to wonder.
The changing world of charitable giving
The way many of us support charities is changing. Total charitable donations in the UK have not increased in decades. We all seem to be focusing on charities we trust – which I hope includes the National Churches Trust!
This is certainly a time of financial concern, not only for each of us, but also for charities.
Thanks to your incredible support National Churches Trust has:
- Helped 2,000 churches and chapels remain open and in good repair since 2007
- In 2021 we awarded over £5 million in grants for urgent repairs ranging from loos and kitchens to essential maintenance
- In 2021 14 churches and chapels were removed from the Heritage At Risk register
The Trust did not achieve all this. YOU did.
And let’s not forget the impact made by churches to social and economic value: £55 billion according to ground breaking research.
You know as well as I do that churches and chapels are a quintessential part of every city, town and village. Not only defining the landscape but providing a heart for every community.
And the demand for grants will not diminish in the future.
How can you help? A gift in your Will is so easy and affordable
In these uncertain times gifts in Wills to charities are increasingly popular. Why? Because it is the one way we can support charities we love but without a transaction NOW.
I have children spanning many ages but even I can put a gift in my Will to the charities I love:
I have left 1% each to three charities so that my family members inherit the remaining 97%
Gifts in Wills to family members help secure their future.
Gifts in wills, regardless of size, help secure the future of churches and chapels.
The only information National Churches Trust can give you (they cannot give legal advice) is also the only information needed by your professional Will writer:
The charity name and number: The National Churches Trust. Registered Charity Number: 1119845
What could be simpler?
A less taxing way of giving
Tax savings might well appeal to many of you. If they do, then it is likely that your estate’s inheritance tax liability can be reduced by £4,000 if you leave us £10,000 in your Will. But this tax is complicated so please take professional advice.
Imagine those following in your footsteps visiting churches and witnessing their beauty and their living role in so many communities. And that will have been thanks to you.
A Toblerone, a goldfish, 1p, a lemon, a bale of hay, a false leg, a stuffed cat? What do these have in common?
Yes, you guessed! They have all been left to charities. But please do not do the same!
I have to end this article with something my daughter said during the Queen’s incredibly moving funeral (and I think Her Majesty and her late husband would smile at this). Daughter “What is the Queen on [in Westminster Hall]?”. “A catafalque” I answered. She looked horrified and said, “A catapult?”
I hope that made you smile. And I hope that if you decide to remember the National Churches Trust in your Will, then you will also smile at the lasting difference you will make.
Richard Radcliffe is an adviser to charities on legacy giving and has specialised in this way of giving for over 30 years.