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The National Trust is under attack

(163 Posts)
Whitewavemark2 Tue 03-Oct-23 11:08:55

Farage and Mogg are attacking the NT and its aim of the protection/conservation of the land that it owns. The Trust lobby’s on the issue of nature and has been labelled as “woke” (do they know what it means) by the likes of Farage and Mogg.

This together with the Trusts various displays of historical displays about how slavery helped build so many of the houses that the Trust owns.

This group of ultra-conservative individuals are attempting to infiltrate the Trust in order to ensure it retreats back in time. What they don’t want is for the Trust to progress with time.

If you are a member and don’t like that people like Farage etc are trying to stop progress please ensure you cast your vote by the end of October.

Primrose53 Tue 03-Oct-23 18:16:45

I don’t like the way the NT operate at all.

A very nice retired gentleman over the road volunteered for them for several years at a NT property but when they tried to get all staff and volunteers to wear Pride rainbow badges he refused and stopped going. He must have saved them thousands of pounds for all the work he did unpaid but said this was a step too far.

The membership fees to join are ridiculous now.

M0nica Tue 03-Oct-23 18:24:09

Casdon The voting papers come with a self-written profile for every person standing for election. Anyone voting should read these and then choose the 5 who most represent the voters views. This is what I, and many others have done.

Those choosing the QuickVote are voting for the 5 people the NT executive want because they reflect their views or are yes people. It is not good for any organisation to have its main governing council formed from insiders. There should always be a range of views exxpressed onany Council that represents the varying views of a societies members.

let me be clear, I definitely think that the history of slavery and how slaves provided the wealth of many estates is a clear and necessary part of their history. As i said my own disenchaantment with the NT has little to do with content just the way the NT corporate image and branding is sucking all the interest and originality out of so many of their properties.

Primrose53 Tue 03-Oct-23 19:56:25

My neighbour and her partner paid £2,500+ for a lifetime membership with the NT. that was 2 years ago and I doubt if she would have spent £100 on admission fees during that time.

To get your money’s worth you need to live in an area with plenty of NT properties or travel around the UK extensively.

Whitewavemark2 Tue 03-Oct-23 19:58:35

I am a long standing member and I think that there can be little doubt that the age profile has got much younger than when i first joined. Young families are much more in evidence now. They are the ones who appreciate the more progressive attitude that the NT has adopted, and are the future of the NT.

Old fogeys like the chap who refused to support the LGBT are a dying breed.

The NT will not survive just attracting people like that.

Casdon Tue 03-Oct-23 20:14:23

M0nica

Casdon The voting papers come with a self-written profile for every person standing for election. Anyone voting should read these and then choose the 5 who most represent the voters views. This is what I, and many others have done.

Those choosing the QuickVote are voting for the 5 people the NT executive want because they reflect their views or are yes people. It is not good for any organisation to have its main governing council formed from insiders. There should always be a range of views exxpressed onany Council that represents the varying views of a societies members.

let me be clear, I definitely think that the history of slavery and how slaves provided the wealth of many estates is a clear and necessary part of their history. As i said my own disenchaantment with the NT has little to do with content just the way the NT corporate image and branding is sucking all the interest and originality out of so many of their properties.

I know Monica, I’m a member. What I meant was that I google the candidates to see if there is anything nefarious before I make my mind up, not just for this vote but for any vote I make. They always give the gloss image of themselves on the pen portraits.

Primrose53 Tue 03-Oct-23 20:31:41

Whitewavemark2

I am a long standing member and I think that there can be little doubt that the age profile has got much younger than when i first joined. Young families are much more in evidence now. They are the ones who appreciate the more progressive attitude that the NT has adopted, and are the future of the NT.

Old fogeys like the chap who refused to support the LGBT are a dying breed.

The NT will not survive just attracting people like that.

That’s where you’re wrong! Over 200 people immediately revoked their NT membership because they agreed with “the old fogey” (as you called him, despite him probably being younger than you.)

www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/national-trust-uturn-volunteers-wear-gay-pride-badges-lgbt-felbrigg-hall-robert-wyndham-kettoncremer-a7878546.html#comments-area

Absolutely ludicrous to expect people to wear badges or lanyards supporting something you feel no connection with or have no interest in.

Whitewavemark2 Tue 03-Oct-23 20:37:14

Primrose53

Whitewavemark2

I am a long standing member and I think that there can be little doubt that the age profile has got much younger than when i first joined. Young families are much more in evidence now. They are the ones who appreciate the more progressive attitude that the NT has adopted, and are the future of the NT.

Old fogeys like the chap who refused to support the LGBT are a dying breed.

The NT will not survive just attracting people like that.

That’s where you’re wrong! Over 200 people immediately revoked their NT membership because they agreed with “the old fogey” (as you called him, despite him probably being younger than you.)

www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/national-trust-uturn-volunteers-wear-gay-pride-badges-lgbt-felbrigg-hall-robert-wyndham-kettoncremer-a7878546.html#comments-area

Absolutely ludicrous to expect people to wear badges or lanyards supporting something you feel no connection with or have no interest in.

Wasn’t he, as a volunteer representing the NT whilst on duty?

200 out of 6000000 members, is a drop in the ocean, what you do not know is the amount of new members they have attracted as a result of their progressive agenda.

Primrose53 Tue 03-Oct-23 21:29:23

Yes and he was doing it for free therefore saving them a massive amount of money. It doesn’t mean he has to agree to wear a Pride badge and they realised very quickly that a lot of people feel the same when people cancelled their memberships.

They immediately did a U turn before they lost even more members.

You don’t know the answer to your last statement either. 😉

Oreo Tue 03-Oct-23 21:40:20

Primrose53

Yes and he was doing it for free therefore saving them a massive amount of money. It doesn’t mean he has to agree to wear a Pride badge and they realised very quickly that a lot of people feel the same when people cancelled their memberships.

They immediately did a U turn before they lost even more members.

You don’t know the answer to your last statement either. 😉

I agree with you.
In the days when I had more money we joined for a few years and did see some lovely houses and gardens, but even if I had the money now I wouldn’t rejoin.It’s been taken over by woke managers in a misguided attempt to attract more members and am sure the opposite has happened.
When they finally realise this it might go back to what it used to do best.

Siope Tue 03-Oct-23 21:42:40

The opposite has not happened. The membership numbers and growth rate are public information.

Oreo Tue 03-Oct-23 21:45:15

English Heritage are supposed to be better places to visit.

Oreo Tue 03-Oct-23 21:46:12

Siope

The opposite has not happened. The membership numbers and growth rate are public information.

It will have to be seen if numbers increase with the cost of living crisis.

LadyGracie Tue 03-Oct-23 22:35:39

There is not one person listed on the election paper that I would consider voting for.

M0nica Tue 03-Oct-23 22:44:10

According to the NT website More than 5.37 million people (5.95 million in 2019–20) are members of the National Trust

The NT site also says we received £79 million in fundraised income (£95.2 million in 2019–20).. The source for both figures is www.nationaltrust.org.uk/who-we-are/about-us/fascinating-facts-and-figures

This suggests both declining membership and declining funding. The NT are clearly doing something wrong.

As I have made clear, my complaints have nothing to do with whether the NT is woke or not, and I doubt whether many of their members or visitors give a toss one way or another,

It is not unreasonable to compare the NT with John Lewis. When their Chief Executive Officer realised that the comapany was not doing well with her in charge, she had the grace to announce her resignation. In the same situation the NT packed its board with supporters who would keep them in their jobs no matter how badly they performed.

Dinahmo Tue 03-Oct-23 22:53:13

M0nica

"As i said my own disenchaantment with the NT has little to do with content just the way the NT corporate image and branding is sucking all the interest and originality out of so many of their properties."

I really don't understand your comment above. Are you suggesting that when the NT repaint a room that they use their corporate colours or using the wrong period soft furnishings. From what I remember tea rooms and the shops were in outbuildings and not in the main house.

I remember visiting Fellbrigg Hall in Norfolk which was given to the Trust after the only son and heir was killed during WW2. What I particularly liked about the house was the continuity through decades with different generations adding to the contents, such as the Chinese furniture, including some Chinese Chippendale, and early 20thC water colours. Standen and Monks House were also favourites.

You are very lucky in England to have such a good collection of houses, usually with original furnishings and art works, that you can visit.

I live in the Dordogne, land of 1000 chateaux,many of which are open to the public and most of those do not have much in the way of contents so they are rather soulless places.

Dinahmo Tue 03-Oct-23 22:56:23

M0nica I suspect that a strong reason why the CEO resigned was the opposition to her plans to change the status of the company by selling off a minority stake.

Dinahmo Tue 03-Oct-23 23:10:55

M0nica You are being a bit disingenuous when you state that fund raising income (for an unspecified year) was £79 million ,compared to £95.2 million in 2019/20. You omitted the fact that the lower figure was raised during 2020/2021 when the country was under lock down for much of the year, mainly when the Trust properties would ordinarily have been ope to the public but were instead closed.

Siope Tue 03-Oct-23 23:32:36

Oddly, neither of those sums show in their headline accounts, and they don’t have a ‘fundraised income’ headline budget head. I dare say a trawl through the full accounts would find what they’ve included in that, but it’s too late and I’m on my phone so it’d be painful!

Their 2021-22 overall income and donations/legacies look reasonable in comparison to pre-lockdown. Their trading income hasn’t recovered fully (but may have this year). Their membership growth rate was the highest ever, up to 6 million plus members.

Where they have really been hammered is investment income, down 14m a year in comparison to 2019-20. It’ll be seriously interesting to see what difference Truss decimating the economy has made to that.

Bodach Tue 03-Oct-23 23:38:50

"I really don't know WTF you are talking about, Freya".
Dear MaizieD, what do you think the use of that type of language brings to your argument?

Dinahmo Tue 03-Oct-23 23:56:43

Siope I looked through the financial statements too but couldn't find M0nica's figures and so I just checked the report linked in her post. It's long past my bed time and I'm an hour ahead of you. I agree with your assessment about the overall trend.

growstuff Wed 04-Oct-23 00:17:18

I'm a NT member. We visited Sutton Hoo two weeks ago and I was very impressed with what the NT has done since I last visited years ago. Yes, there's a cafe and a shop - both of which are newly built and sell the same kind of thing that every NT property sells.

However, there's a museum with replicas of the artefacts found when the site was first discovered (the originals are in the British Museum). The museum attendant was very knowledgeable. He was a former professional scientist and my partner and he chatted for ages about the composition of the artefacts. We also accompanied a talk, which was very informative and entertaining. There were also designated walking areas for families and people with accessibility issues.

For anybody who hasn't visited Sutton Hoo, there isn't that much to see apart from some mounds on the ground. It all needs putting into context and I thought the NT did that superbly.

Rosie51 Wed 04-Oct-23 00:56:23

I used to be a member of NT and English Heritage, but my NT membership had lapsed. I was considering restarting it when some years ago we visited Brownsea Island. On arrival on the island we were asked to gift aid our entry fees. My disabled grandson was not to be given any reduction on entry price nor was his dedicated carer. I declined to gift aid, declined the voluntary contribution and would never consider rejoining the NT. As I explained my grandson's condition meant we'd be on the island for 30 minutes max, and that was just to satisfy his older brother's curiosity. No compassion, no understanding equalled no extra money from me. We have never encountered such rigidity from English Heritage which is why, despite not using it for over3 years, I still pay the membership.

growstuff Wed 04-Oct-23 02:33:53

I don't have a problem with gift aiding, but I agree with Rosie51 that the treatment of your grandson and his carer was appalling.

Grammaretto Wed 04-Oct-23 04:37:50

I am a longstanding member of NT and have been reading these posts with interest.

NT aren't particularly well endowed in my part of Scotland with stately homes though much land is owned and can be accessed by anybody, member or not, - which is good.

They run training schemes for volunteers to learn land management and, dry stone walling, hedging skills etc

It's no worse than other similar organisations.

Historic Environment Scotland has closed several of its buildings due to H&S issues with no sign of any work being done.

YMCA/YWCA sold off several properties, which I still miss. Their reasoning at the time was that their ethos of helping poor people out of poverty wasn't being met.

So there's good and bad.

On a personal note, I recently visited a NTS house in Glasgow and had to pay entrance fee because there was no accessable database and i hadn't brought my membership card. It is on my phone but there was no WiFi!

vegansrock Wed 04-Oct-23 05:51:02

The NT isn’t all stately homes and tea rooms. The most interesting place I’ve visited recently was the Holmwood in Surrey. It’s an example of mid century modernist design where you get taken for a tour. Fascinating post war history. No tearooms.