A lasting impact: legacy giving

Leaving a gift in your Will doesn’t cost anything in your lifetime, but it can make a lasting difference to our University.

Dr James Nisbet at the signing of the contract for the first building on campus, 1984
Dr James Nisbet (second left) at the signing of the contract for the first building on campus, 1984

Quantity Surveyor Dr James Nisbet was involved with the construction of all the early buildings on campus. Today, the University is building on his legacy. James left a gift in his Will that established the University’s Endowment Fund to support special projects and to champion initiatives of strategic importance. It was an aspiration that perfectly describes our Gold Scholarships, hence the investment in the programme, and the people.

Our five Nisbet Gold Scholarship students owe the support they receive to the kindness of someone they have never met.

“Thank you for giving me this chance to prove myself,” writes one second year student, “for levelling the playing field, and helping me to overcome my insecurity of not being good enough. I promise your faith is not put in the wrong hands.”

When pledging a legacy, you decide where you want your support to go, whether that’s towards the University as a whole or an aspect that means the most to you, like alumnus and Football Blue, Jeff Trendell. His gift established the Trendell Family Sports Scholarships, which are now continued by his wife and son. These scholarships are awarded to students who combine exceptional sporting and academic talent.

Beneficiary Hadia Hosny El Said came from Egypt to combine a full-time Master’s with a packed schedule of badminton training and international fixtures. Hadia represented Egypt at the Olympic Games in 2012, and graduated with an MSc in Medical Biosciences that same year. “It was such a hard time between travelling, tournaments and coursework but whenever I came back to the University, I felt like I arrived home,” she said. “I really want to thank the Trendell family and I am honoured to have been one of the recipients of the scholarship.”

For Dorothy Walters-Godfree and Margaret Dewey, it was the arts that they wanted to foster at Bath. Dorothy was married to one of our very first lecturers, Gerald Walters, and she maintained contact with the University throughout her life, while Margaret was a music teacher here and loved helping students thrive. Both bequeathed arts scholarships to nurture up-and coming talent.

"This scholarship has made my first year of university amazing"

Winnie and Noel Gear
Winnie and Noel Gear left a legacy to help bright engineering students

For legacy givers Noel and Winnie Gear, however, it was engineering that was close to their hearts. Noel had worked as an electrical design engineer for the Admiralty (where he met Winnie), and they were keen to help bright engineering students who might not otherwise be able to afford a university education. Their legacies created the Pringle Gear Scholarship Fund, which has supported eight students. One wrote: “This scholarship has made my first year of university amazing, and something I will cherish. I will not take this opportunity for granted.”

Noel and Winnie had not studied at Bath but were local philanthropists, like John and Barbara Redwood, whose recent legacy created three Gold Scholarships. This generosity is not lost on the students, as one recipient explains: “Outside of birthday and Christmas presents, I’ve never really been given much, so it still feels a bit surreal to know I was accepted. I can’t describe how happy I was when I found out I had been awarded the scholarship. Thank you.”

Over the past 50 years, gifts of all sizes from our generous alumni and friends have made, and are making, such a tremendous difference at Bath. We hope they are proud of the legacies they have left, and the students they are inspiring.

See the members of the 1966 Society.

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