under the bed? i would invest it and take more risk with it than be safe. the economy is picking up, FTSE is doing well and i think will continue to do well over the next few years - lots of opportunities to make good money!
First, pay off any debt, and look at what that reduction on your mortgage would save you annually. Then....the stock market! Lloyds and Barclays are very depressed, and I think shares in BT are still very good value. I'm counting on a 10% profit on each of those, from where I am now. Motley Fool do a very good amateur share account.
An adviser may charge you for advice, but it needn't be that expensive... compared to what a bad decision could cost you! TBH your capacity for loss would be high on the list for discussion. Possibly deposit based structured products alongside some tax sheltered investments, all done once all debts and emergency funds have been accounted for.
If you still have a mortgage, offset the cash. You'll get a much better return on it than you would in most savings accounts, and you can withdraw it whenever you want. If not: I'm in the equities camp. I'd suggest investment trusts or ETFs rather than single shares. Make the most of ISA allowances.
Equities probably are a bit overvalued at present, but they are the least bad choice at present in my view. Cash returns are cr@p and I think property will take a tumble in a couple of years.
You would be asked for a lot more info than you have given before you would be given professional advice. Things like-
Existing savings/debts/finances/pension provision/tax etc Your age and family situation What are the chances you might need some of it. Who will manage it If you manage it, how knowledgable are you and how involved do you want to be. How much work do you want to put into this. How risk adverse are you Are you concerned just with capital growth or do you want dividends too
I don't really know what I am talking about but I listen to MoneyBox a lot
I would seek the advice of a good independent financial advisor, not one tied to the bank!!! They will look at your attitude to risk and yes you will pay for their advice but the products they have available can be very good and only avowal el through an IFA. Stock market is quite high so might not be the best time to invest. A good well established IFA will have more knowledge and experience than you. HTH