Here is a round-up of the main talking points from the 2018 ILM Annual Conference in association with Bates Wells Braithwaite
It was a packed house at this year’s ILM Annual Conference, with around 250 legacy officers, solicitors and others gathering for a day packed full of news, views and opinion relating to the legacy sector.
The conference this year was held at etcvenues, 155 Bishopsgate, which proved to be the perfect venue for networking as well as to enjoy listening to our speakers on the day.
We were very lucky to have Tom Dumont from Radcliffe Chambers hosting the event, and he kept the day running smoothly.
Our CEO Chris Millward kicked off the day with a round-up of all we have achieved at ILM over the past three years, with only one photo of cat Jamie in the mix this year. It was great to hear all that has been done behind the scenes to raise the profile of the organisation in recent years, as well as recognition of the hard work our members carry out to ensure that every generous donor’s final wishes achieve their greatest potential.
Our headline sponsor BWB brought several speakers with them on the day and managed to cram loads of interesting and useful information into their sessions, with Rob Oakley introducing their session, and Lucas Atkin even managing the seemingly impossible task of making GDPR relevant and interesting! Jaqui Symcox and Sophie Cass provided the day’s legal case roundup, while later in the day Laura Soley outlined when you might want to turn down a legacy. Leticia Jennings looked at executors’ costs and communication, while Jamie Huard rounded off BWB’s second session with a look at property legacies. The use of an online voting system on the day made the sessions really interactive and helped to get an idea of opinions around the room.
Meg Abdy of Legacy Foresight is a regular – and firm favourite – at our annual conference, and once again she gave an informative and humorous look at the legacy landscape using references to the music of the 60s and 70s. With the rate of deaths ever-increasing, the number of legacies will surely be rising too in the coming years.
A panel discussion on the future of will writing was lively and interesting, and had many questions from our delegates. There was enough to discuss here to go on for much longer, but most panel members seemed in agreement that digital wills cannot be dismissed and could well be the future. This is surely a topic we will be revisiting again in the coming months and years.
After a very tasty lunch served in Bento boxes, we went on to two sessions that looked at death and dying. Toby Scott from Dying Matters looked at public attitudes to death and the interesting fact that, through Dying Matters research, it came to light that “we want to talk about death, but don’t because we think others don’t want to”.
Next up was ILM’s very own Training Manager Nichola Sims who gave a very personal – and often hilarious – talk about her own attitudes towards dying and confessed that she hasn’t made a will. We hope that by next year’s conference she’s finally made her will – and will try and persuade her to give a talk at next year’s conference too.
Rounding off the day
Tim Maltin of Maltin PR and Eifron Hopper of RNLI joined forces for the final speaker session of the day to talk about how to engage in a positive way with the press and avoid negative publicity.
And the winner is …
Our awards ceremony, sponsored by Legacy Link, rounded off the day nicely as the two recipients of Legacy Link’s Crispin Ellison bursary award were announced – they were Mel Banham of Bransby Horses and Jenny Anne Dexter of the Rainbow Trust.
Our CiCLA Student of the Year was Caroline Myers, and our final award went to the Legacy Professional of the Year, which was voted for by ILM members. The lucky and well-deserved winner of this award was Pam Murdoch.
Many of our delegates stayed around to enjoy a drink or two at our drinks reception, sponsored by Radcliffe Chambers, and as always this was a fantastic opportunity to network with colleagues old and new.