Remembering the Library in your Will

Strongly independent and with no government funding, the Library has been reliant on generations of philanthropists to help provide for its future.

Leaving a gift in your Will is one of the most personal ways of supporting the Library. Some bequests, such as Major William Prevost’s in 1929 and Florian Carr’s in 2007, were applied towards major building improvements. Library members have also left more modest gifts, keen to give something back to what they have gained through their years of using these wonderful resources. Members and supporters often declare “I love The London Library,” and a legacy will mark and express that affection. Your gift will be remembered long into the future in the fabric and collection of this remarkable place, and will play a vital part in allowing further generations of users to benefit from the unique resources found here.

A gift in your Will can be a tax-efficient way of giving and will cost you nothing during your lifetime. Unrestricted legacies – the applications of which are left to the discretion of the Library’s Trustees – are exceptionally valuable as they can be used wherever the need is greatest. Alternatively you might wish to direct your bequest towards a key area of the Library’s work that you particularly cherishand we would be very happy to discuss this with you.

If you choose to remember the Library in your Will and inform us  of your intention to do so you will be included in our Prevost Chapter, a growing group of dedicated supporters who have chosen to remember the Library.

If you would like to talk confidentially about leaving a legacy to the Library or making an In Memoriam donation, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 7766 4744.       

How to make a gift

There are three key types of bequests you can make to the Library, described below. Further information and suggested wording to include in your Will, can be found here

If you already have a Will and wish to add a gift for the benefit of the Library, you can do this by making a codicil to your will. In every case we strongly recommend that you consult a solicitor when making or updating your will, to ensure that it is legally valid and reflects your intentions.

A Pecuniary Legacy

This is a fixed sum of money decided by you.

A Residuary Legacy

This can be a bequest of the remainder, or a proportion of the remainder, of your estate after other legacies, Inheritance Tax, debts and expenses have been paid.

A Specific Gift

This is a gift of something valuable including property, stocks or shares, literary rights, books, art and antiques. If you are considering leaving a collection of books to the Library, we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your plans with you before you commit them to your Will.       

In Memoriam donations

A particularly eloquent and enduring way of commemorating the life of a relation, friend or colleague for whom The London Library was a special place is to consider making a gift in their memory.

An In Memoriam gift is a lasting tribute that can play a valuable role in helping to secure our future. The gift may be an individual benefaction or the proceeds from a collection made in someone's memory. You may prefer to request that donations be made to the Library in lieu of funeral flowers, or to make a donation each year to remember someone's birthday.

If you would like further information, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 7766 4744.