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Mencap Inherits from Heir Hunters Success

Posted 22nd February 2010.

The programme, broadcast on 9 February, saw the firms researchers trace the relatives of Michael who died last year at the age of 60 without making a will.

As part of the programme, David Congdon, Mencaps Head of campaigns and policy, commented on the change in attitudes towards people with a learning disability since Michaels childhood in the fifties. Michaels parents made the decision to raise him at home with his sister, at a time when most children with a learning disability were sent to live in long-term institutions.

David Congdon said: We are very grateful to both Fraser & Fraser and Mrs. Pooley for making this kind gesture. Michael grew up at a time when people with a learning disability were largely kept on the fringes of society. While much progress has been made since then, we are still working hard to change attitudes and these donations will help us to continue our work.

Neil Fraser, Partner at Fraser & Fraser said that giving up the firms fee on this case was a simple decision. Michael was brought up by his parents with the help of charities including Mencap, and their efforts for Michael to lead a secure and happy life that were continued after they passed away. This enabled Michael to continue to live a fulfilled life, be well liked and play a real part in the community. We are delighted to contribute to others benefitting from the organisations fantastic work in the same way as Michael did.

Mencap offers a free wills and trusts information service to families and carers of people with a learning disability. For more information please contact them on 020 7696 6925 or by email: willsandtrusts@mencap.org.uk. Information is also available at www.mencap.org.uk/willsandtrusts

-ENDS-

For further information, contact Amy Edmunds at Mencap on 020 7696 6950 or email amy.edmunds@mencap.org.uk or Kasia Oberc at Fraser & Fraser on 020 7832 1400 or email kasiaoberc@lostkin.co.uk

Notes to editors
About Mencap
Mencap supports the 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK and their families and carers. Mencap fights to change laws and improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities, supporting thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.

We are also the largest service provider of services, information and advice for people with a learning disability across England, Northern Ireland and Wales.

See www.mencap.org.uk for more information.

About Fraser & Fraser
In the last 10 years, Fraser & Frasers genealogists have helped to distribute over £100 million to some 50,000 beneficiaries in the course of more than 10,000 cases, on estates ranging from £5,000 to several million pounds. The firm, currently featuring in BBC1s hugely popular show Heir Hunters currently in its fourth series, Fraser and Fraser traces its roots back to 1923.
Fraser & Fraser welcomes new instruction to find heirs or owners of derelict property.

About learning disability
A learning disability is caused by the way the brain develops before, during or shortly after birth. It is always lifelong and affects someone’s intellectual and social development. It used to be called mental handicap but this term is outdated and offensive. Learning disability is NOT a mental illness.
The term learning difficulty is often incorrectly used interchangeably with learning disability.