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To celebrate Vikings Live, we have replaced our Roman alphabet with the runic alphabet used by the Vikings, the Scandinavian ‘Younger Futhark’. The ‘Younger Futhark’ has only 16 letters, so we have used some of the runic letters more than once or combined two runes for one Roman letter.

For an excellent introduction to runes, we recommend Martin Findell’s book published by British Museum Press.

More information about how we have ‘runified’ this site

 

Leaving a legacy to the British Museum
or the British Museum Friends

If you would like to leave a legacy to the British Museum you can do so by giving a gift in your Will either to the British Museum or the British Museum Friends. The British Museum Friends is a separate charity which supports and assists the British Museum to maintain and expand the Museum’s collection and services to scholars and to the general public, by supporting research and exhibitions. The generous contribution made by the British Museum Friends makes a huge difference to the work of the British Museum.


Suggested wording for
non-specific gifts

If you are kindly considering leaving a gift in your Will to the British Museum or British Museum Friends, then the following wording can be used in your Will. However, we always recommend that you take professional advice from a solicitor to ensure the legacy meets your personal circumstances.

Residuary gift to the British Museum

I give [state proportion e.g. one third] of the residue of my estate to the Trustees of the British Museum of Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG to be used for their general charitable purposes and I declare that the receipt of their Director or other proper officer shall be a full and sufficient discharge.

Residuary gift to the British Museum Friends

I give [state proportion e.g. one third] of the residue of my estate to the British Museum Friends of Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG to be used for their general charitable purposes and I declare that the receipt of their Treasurer or other proper officer shall be a full and sufficient discharge.

Pecuniary gift to the British Museum

I give free of tax to the Trustees of the British Museum the sum of [amount in words] (£____ [amount in figures]) to be used for their general charitable purposes, and I declare that the receipt of their Director or other proper officer shall be a full and sufficient discharge.

Pecuniary gift to the British Museum Friends

I give free of tax to the Trustees of the British Museum Friends the sum of [amount in words] (£____ [amount in figures]) to be used for their general charitable purposes, and I declare that the receipt of their Treasurer or other proper officer shall be a full and sufficient discharge.

Reversionary gift to the British Museum

My Executors shall hold [details of assets] (the “Trust Fund”) upon the following trusts;

a. The income of the Trust Fund shall be paid to [insert beneficiary e.g. my husband/wife/civil partner], [insert name of beneficiary], during his/her lifetime.

b. My Executors may, at any time during of lifetime of the [name of beneficiary above] pay or apply the whole or any part of the Trust Fund in which [name of beneficiary above] is then entitled to an interest in possession to [him/her] for [his/her] advancement or otherwise for [his/her] benefit in such manner as my Executors shall in their discretion see fit.

c. Subject to sub-clauses a and b above, the capital and the income of the Trust Fund shall be held upon trust for the Trustees of the British Museum of Great Russell street London WC1B 3DG (“British Museum”) for its general charitable purposes.

d. I direct that the receipt of a person who appears to be the Director, Deputy Director or other proper officer of the British Museum shall be a full and sufficient discharge to my Executors.

Reversionary gift to the British Museum Friends

My Executors shall hold [details of assets] (the “Trust Fund”) upon the following trusts;

a. The income of the Trust Fund shall be paid to [insert beneficiary e.g. my husband/wife/civil partner], [insert name of beneficiary], during his/her lifetime.

b. My Executors may, at any time during of lifetime of the [name of beneficiary above] pay or apply the whole or any part of the Trust Fund in which [name of beneficiary above] is then entitled to an interest in possession to [him/her] for [his/her] advancement or otherwise for [his/her] benefit in such manner as my Executors shall in their discretion see fit.

c. Subject to sub-clauses a and b above, the capital and the income of the Trust Fund shall be held upon trust for the Trustees of the British Museum Friends of Great Russell street London WC1B 3DG (“British Museum Friends”) for its general charitable purposes.

d. I direct that the receipt of a person who appears to be the Treasurer or other proper officer of the British Museum Friends shall be a full and sufficient discharge to my Executors.

Additional wording if you wish to support a specific area of Museum work

I express the wish that the said sum be applied for the purposes of the Department of [e.g. Department of Asia] or such other department of the Museum as shall at the date of my death have responsibility for the [e.g. Asian] collection.


Suggested wording for
specific gifts

If you are kindly considering leaving a specific gift in your Will to the British Museum or British Museum Friends, then the following wording can be used in your Will. However, we always recommend that you take professional advice from a solicitor to ensure the legacy meets your personal circumstances.

Objects

I give to the Trustees of the British Museum my _____________ [including all my vested and contingent copyright and other intellectual property rights subsisting in the same].

Works of art on paper

I give to the Trustees of the British Museum those of the works on paper found in my studio as the Trustees may in their absolute discretion select and I declare that the receipt of the Trustees of the British Museum for those of the said works selected as aforesaid signed on behalf of the said Trustees by the Director of the Museum shall be a full and sufficient discharge to my Executors.


Registered addresses

Please use the full name and correct registered address.

The Trustees of the British Museum
Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG

The Museum’s operations are governed by an Act of Parliament, The British Museum Act 1963. It is also a charity. However, it is not subject to regulation by the Charity Commission and therefore has no ‘registered Charity number’. The British Museum is an Exempt Charity (i.e. exempt from registration) pursuant to section 22 and schedule 3 paragraph 17 Charities Act 2011.

The British Museum Friends
Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG

The British Museum Friends are a members’ organisation and a company limited by guarantee and registered in England (company number 4133346). The British Museum Friends are also a charity registered with the Charity Commission (charity number 1086080). Registered office: Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3DG.


Codicil

If you have already made a Will and now wish to add the British Museum or British Museum Friends as a beneficiary, you can ask a solicitor to help you complete a simple Codicil form. A Codicil is a legal document that is used to make minor changes to your Will. You will need to sign the form in the presence of two independent witnesses and should keep it in a safe place along with your Will. A beneficiary of your Will or their spouse or civil partner cannot witness your Codicil.

 Codicil form

 

Image: Bronze figure of a seated cat. From Saqqara, Egypt, Late Period, after 600 BC.