More charities are benefiting from legacies in the UK with legacy income rising fastest in Scotland & Wales, according to research from legacy consortium Remember A Charity.
The UK Legacy Fundraising Market Report looks at legacy income to the top 1,100+ legacy-earning fundraising charities in the UK, and how legacy fundraising changed between 2007 and 2017. It found that average legacy income in the UK grew from £1.6m per charity in 2007 to £1.9m in 2017 and now generates 28% of charities’ total voluntary income annually.
While legacy income is growing with a recent consumer study showing increasingly positive public attitudes towards legacies, Remember A Charity warned that income is being stretched with more charities coming into the marketplace, making it all the more important that charities work together to grow the donor market.
Commenting on the findings, Rob Cope, director of Remember A Charity, said:
“The donor market is clearly growing with a long-term shift in the proportion of estates that include a charitable gift. But with rapid expansion in the legacy fundraising marketplace and more charities at the table, the question is whether charities will start to feel the squeeze.
“Our research shows that legacy income is being stretched across a broader marketplace and that some markets are more likely to feel the pinch than others. With the future impact of Brexit as yet unknown and economic instability predicted for some time yet, this reinforces the need for the sector to work collaboratively to grow the donor market, providing a more stable basis for this vital income stream for the years ahead.”
Major charities (organisations with annual income exceeding £10 million) dominate much of the legacy market, accounting for 81% of legacy income.
In Scotland, charities raise almost £72 million annually through legacy gifts, while in Wales, almost £20 million is donated annually to the top legacy-earning charities headquartered there. Legacy income is also growing faster in Wales than elsewhere in the UK with Welsh charities seeing a real-term legacy income rise of 35% between 2007-2017. In contrast, Scotland saw a 23% rise while England only saw a 4% rise. Those with a UK-wide remit experienced legacy income growth of 13%.
Health causes dominate the market, accounting for 42% of all UK legacy income, followed by animal charities, which receive 16%. However, Remember A Charity’s data shows that the market is changing, with overseas aid, environmental and services charities increasing their market share over the past decade, while religious charities and social care lost ground.
This year’s Remember A Charity Week is scheduled for 9-15 September 2019.