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Scottish legacy market insights revealed in new report


Remember A Charity and Legacy Futures have released a new report highlighting the growth and breadth of the Scottish legacy market, and sharing insights and recommendations from charity legacy experts to help those at the start of their legacy fundraising journey. 

The Scottish Legacy Market Report 2023 shares statistics that reveal how legacy giving to Scottish charities is showing a year-on-year rise, with the latest data from SCVO showing that it reached £136mn in 2020/2021.

Lucinda Frostick, Director at Remember A Charity, said:

In the cost-of-living crisis, money is tight for charities and supporters alike. But in many ways, this brings us all closer together, with people being acutely aware of the need for charitable services and wanting to support the causes they care about. As legacy giving has little or no upfront cost while offering the potential to achieve a better future, we’re seeing appetite for giving in this way reach record levels. Legacies offer a huge growth opportunity for Scottish charities.” 

The report also shares how legacies account for one fifth of all money donated to Scottish charities, and that almost 50% of all Scottish charities’ legacy income goes to the country’s top 50 charities. They received a total of £66mn in 2020/21, which was 2.8% higher than the previous year, with the biggest share going to health causes.

The statistics in the report come from a variety of sources including SCVO and Smee & Ford as well as OKO/Remember A Charity, and Legacy Foresight. The insights and recommendations come from legacy experts at CHAS, Worldwide Cancer Research, Children in Scotland, Cancer Support Scotland and SCOTLAND: The Big Picture.

The report also shares that:

The connection supporters feel to good causes continues to grow along with a rising interest in legacy giving. 

42% of Scots aged 40 and above say they would be happy to give in this way and 21% have already done so.  

Some 500 Scottish charities of all sizes are named in Wills each year. 

Gifts in Wills are the largest single source of voluntary income for charities in the UK, and raise almost £3.9 billion for good causes annually. Whilst Scotland’s legacy market is younger than that of England and Wales, the report says it is seeing considerable long-term growth, with hundreds of charities of all sizes now being named in Wills each year.  

Kath Horsley, Director of Insight at Legacy Foresight, commented:

The fundraising market is becoming increasingly challenging and competitive but for those charities who continue to invest in legacy fundraising it remains resilient and we continue to see legacy income on an upward trajectory. Whilst the Scottish market is relatively small, it is clear that Scotland is on a similar trend to that of the UK as a whole, and the forecast for charity legacies remains promising. 

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