Frequently Asked Questions

What is a gift in a will?

A gift in a will or a legacy is an amount of money or property left in a will.

How will a gift in my will help RBGE?

Supporters who remember RBGE with a gift in their will make a huge difference to the Gardens. By supporting RBGE in this way, you can support the full spectrum of our work, from developing and enhancing our four gardens to delivering world-leading research programmes and education initiatives. 

If you do remember us in your will, please consider pledging because knowing in advance about potential bequests means we can thank you in your lifetime. 

Isn’t this just for the wealthy?

In a word, no. You do not need to own a property to leave a gift in a will, nor do you need to have savings or an investment portfolio. Writing your will presents an opportunity to remember a cause close to your heart and ensure that your wishes are carried out after your death.

£70, for example, would help us to employ a horticulturist for a day, and £200 would allow us to propagate and look after 10 endangered plants. At RBGE, all contributions are gratefully received and will be used to explore, conserve and explain the world of plants for a better future.

Why do I need a will?

Without a will, it is the law that determines what happens to your money, property and possessions.

With a will, it is you that is in charge of who receives what. Some people also choose to leave instructions like their funeral wishes in their will.

How do I get a will written and how much does it cost?

We recommend you consult your solicitor to ensure your will is up to date, legally binding and accurately reflects your wishes.

Costs can vary and start at about £125. RBGE Members and Patrons have access to negotiated discounts at solicitor firms that work in partnership with us.

Alternatively, there are charity schemes where you can get your will written free of charge, or in exchange for a donation to a nominated charity. RBGE does not offer this service and we recommend you consult with a solicitor.

What are the different types of gifts in wills?

You can leave a sum of money, a percentage of your estate or a specific item.

  • A sum of money is known as a pecuniary legacy and is an exact sum stated in your will.
  • A percentage of your estate comes from the ‘residue’ of the estate - what is left after all other bequests, taxes and debts have been paid. You can give the entire residue or a share of it to RBGE. You may prefer to leave a residuary legacy as the value of the legacy will be determined following your death. This means that the value of the legacy will increase with the value of your estate.
  • A specific legacy relates to a particular item such as stock or shares, property or personal possessions.
Where can I get more information?

You can download our guide to leaving a donation to RBGE in your will. Alternatively, you can also speak to a member of our Development team on 0131 248 2987.

There are also many guides out there on the internet to help you. These include: