Uni­ver­si­ty of Oxford: lega­cy brochure

Exhibited by
Shona Nicholson, head of annual fund and legacies, University of Oxford.
June 16, 2011
Medium of Communication
Direct mail
Target Audience
Legacy, regular gift, single gift
Type of Charity
Country of Origin
Date of first appearance
June, 2009

SOFII’s view

We like the thorough, professional way that Oxford University has gone about planning and preparing this brochure. They’ve clearly treated it as important, recognising the brochure’s potentially crucial role in both raising awareness of and interest in the subject and simplifying any perceived complexities. As a result they’ve developed a very flexible and adaptable tool that will surely be of great value as the University expands its friends and alumni’s understanding of the need for legacies.

Creator / originator

Writer: Nick Kavanagh, artist, Crop Design and Print; legacy consultant, Richard Radcliffe.

Summary / objectives

To market legacy giving among University of Oxford alumni and friends.


The University of Oxford launched an ambitious £1.25 billion campaign in May 2008 with the purpose of perpetually increasing the level of giving through engagement with alumni and friends. This legacy brochure is the first in over 10 years and is collegiate in nature, in other words, it encourages giving across the University – colleges, departments, museums, libraries and other areas within Oxford University. It is personalised by area through an insert template, which can be customised to suit a college, department, or an area such as student support. All of the technical wording and other legal issues are included on inserts that fit into the back of the folder. This provides greater flexibility, especially if there are changes to legal or tax wording. The opening message is from the Chancellor, Lord Patten, who is well-known and respected by alumni and friends. It is designed as a response to enquiries and as a leave-behind for both college and University development staff in their visits with potential legators.

Special characteristics

Dr John Clarkson, a renowned design accessibility specialist, was consulted to ensure that the brochure took an older audience into consideration. Also, the draft brochure was discussed with a small focus group of people who had contacted the University about leaving a legacy.


The legacy team at the University of Oxford has the challenging remit of representing the whole of the University in its discussions with potential legators and also to provide marketing materials that can be used by both college and University development staff. By providing an inspiring vision in the main document as well as individualised content in the template insert, this brochure has the ability to be as broad or as narrow as required.