Gifts & Legacies
A tradition of generosity
Throughout its long history, the children at Saint Ronan’s and the School itself have benefited daily the many gifts which have been made to the School by the alumni, parents and other friends. These gifts have range form modest everyday items to major developments.
The Chapel, for example, was built and furnished in 1904 with gifts from parents. The organ was donated to the school in 1926 and then, in the 1950s, money was once again raised to move it, brick by brick, from the School’s original site in Worthing to its current position.
In 1920 friends funded the building of a set of fives courts and the erection of a war memorial. In 1926, following the early death of Stanley Harris, members of the school community established the Stanley Harris Scholarship at Pembroke College specifically for undergraduates who had been at either Saint Ronan’s or Westminster.
W.B. Harris, Headmaster from 1926 to 1957, made perhaps the most generous gift of all when he left the entire Tongswood Estate in trust for the School to enjoy, in perpetuity and his majority share in the school as a business to his junior partner, Sir Richard Vassar-Smith. His son, Sir John, in turn placed in 1997 the family interest in the School into a charitable trust and in doing so protected the School’s future.
In more recent times, generosity has helped with the redevelopment of the Stable Block, refurbishment of the Dining Room and the Swimming Pool, and the construction of the Sports Hall (The Founder’s Hall). This term, a friend has pledged the monies needed to overhaul the organ.
It is an unquestionable fact that Saint Ronan’s would not be what it is today without this tradition of generosity. There is a history of giving.
A full and efficiently run Prep School of our size may be able to ‘make’ between 5p and 10p in the pound. At Saint Ronan’s all of this operational ‘profit’ is ploughed back into the fabric of the School but it is not enough to do much more than refurbish or re-equip tired areas or departments. If the School is to ‘step up’ a notch it needs external finance, without burdening itself with debt, and this message was at the core of the recent Sports Hall Campaign.
In your time at the School you may have, unbeknown to you at the time, benefited from the gifts of previous generations. In turn, you may now feel it is your turn to do the same for the children at Saint Ronan’s today and in the future.
How to donate
There are a number of different ways to make a gift to the school. For UK taxpayers, many of these can also be tax-efficient.
Leaving a legacy
You can remember the school in your Will.
A pecuniary legacy is a gift of a fixed sum of money; this may decrease in value over time but it is possible to index link the sum to preserve its current value.
A residuary legacy is a gift of the remainder of your estate once other bequests and obligations have been fulfilled. This type of legacy is perhaps most valuable to the School.
A reversionary legacy allows you to leave your assets in trust for the benefit of your family members for the duration of their lifetimes but which reverts to the School thereafter.
A conditional legacy provides for the eventuality that should none of your family members survive you, your estate is left to the School.
A specific or non-money legacy allows you to make a gift of property, shares or other valuables that the School may keep or sell.
For further help with leaving a legacy to Saint Ronan’s please contact the Headmaster.
Making a regular donation
You can choose to make a regular donation by standing order. If you choose to set this up yourself, please notify us of your decision. Alternatively you can download and return this donation form and we will arrange it on your behalf.
Make a one-off payment
You can make a single payment by cheque, payable to St Ronan’s School (Hawkhurst), or (coming soon) online with your credit or debit card. You are also able to use your CAF account.
Matched payment schemes
Some companies operate a Matched Payment scheme. It is worth checking with your Human Resources department whether such a scheme is in operation, as this can double or triple the value of your gift.