Category: National Trust
The puffin population living on the remote islands of Northumberland Farne Islands that are cared for by the National Trust is stable according to the results of a survey conducted once every five years. Last year there was speculation that the low numbers on the outlying islands were because of a long, harsh winter and lack of readily available food and there were fears that this could well be the case across the entire island chain.
Fears were unfounded
It now appears that the low numbers initially reported were the result of a robust seal population that resulted in puffin burrows being crushed on the outer islands. On the inner isles though more birds were nesting in response. The results of the survey suggest that the population of puffins has stabilised across the archipelago at around 44,000 pairs, an increase of nine per cent since the previous count which took place in 2013.
A lot of angst
Over the last quarter century, the population has steadily increased and peaked in 2003 before suddenly crashing in 2008. The population has started to slowly recover. Thomas Hendry of the National Trust says initially there was a lot of anxiety following the count on the group of outer islands, however after further investigation and a count of the population on the inner group of islands, the numbers appeared to be much more positive.
National Trust responsible for robust population
Puffins have been successful on Farnes largely as a consequence of the good work done by National Trust rangers who have increased the level of protection of the marine areas surrounding the islands as well as a lack of predators and availability of suitable nesting areas. The big risk is that climate change will eventually put the squeeze on the population in Farnes forcing the birds to travel further to feed as well as increase the number of storms during winter affecting the population at sea. As a result, surveys will now take place annually.
Possible to tackle the challenges faced
Harriet Reid another National Trust ranger who is one of 11 that reside on the islands between March and December says annual monitoring will allow the team to better track numbers against likely causes of population change. It is important that the UK contributes to the global population picture so that experts can better understand and discover what the key factors that affect these birds are and what more can be done to help. If the root cause behind the decline is what is suspected, it is possible to prevent overfishing, cut down on single use plastics as well as reduce dependence on non-renewable energy.
Category: National Trust
The National Trust has combined with Your Housing Group in a bid to restore a nature trail on the outskirts of Manchester. The trail was established in 2007 with money from the EU and was maintained by local authorities but over the last few years has been underused and become overgrown. The National Lottery Community Fund issued a grant of £5,000 that has provided funding for work to bring the green space back to life.
Plenty of beautiful nature filled paths
After restoration the trail will once again be accessible for local people to enjoy. Redbrook Trail sits adjacent to the Partington estate owned of which 1,200 properties are either owned and managed by Your Housing Group. The site sits on 5.8 acres with plenty of paths that people can walk along which pass through some beautiful stretches of woodland that are filled with wildflower, birds and mammals.
Work being done by volunteers
Most of the work is being done mainly by a group of volunteers made up members of the community including school children who have cleared out pathways as well as restored information boards, signs and picked up litter. A spokesperson for Your Housing Group says that a couple of years ago the group began to look at ways it could restore the Redbrook Trail and it is a wonderful thing to watch the area undergo a transformation with the help of conservation experience provided by the National Trust.
Breathing new life into a green space
Your Group Housing together with the National Trust are breathing new life in this green space restoring it so that it once again can be a place for nature to flourish. Future generations of locals will now have the ability to enjoy the wonderful trail that Partington is fortunate to have. A spokesperson for the National Trust said the trail is critical for the local community and by restoring it so that it is both open and accessible, it will have a positive impact on the welfare and health of people who reside in the area.
Connecting people to nature
The work being done on the Redbrook Trail is all about connecting people regardless of their background with the nature that sits right on their doorstep. The goal is to create an accessible experience for everyone and to instil a sense of pride in those that contributed. People are being taught new skills and the younger generation are being inspired to take action to conserve nature whilst also gaining valuable work experiences.
Category: National Trust
This year the National Trust has a new cultural offering that features a number of heritage celebrations, art exhibitions and other events. The organisation will restore and re-interpret some of the country’s most famous sites so that visitors of any age will be able to develop a deeper understanding of their histories. John Orna-Ornstein of the National Trust says he would like thee organisation to provide as many people as possible with the opportunity to feel welcome and connected to the sites that it manages. Here are the cultural highlights for 2019:
People’s Landscapes – nationwide
This programme takes its inspiration from the 200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre in Manchester. It will feature a number of events activities throughout the UK and visitors will have the opportunity to explore historic landscapes that were the sites where people gathered to demand dramatic social change.
Sutton Hoo – Suffolk
In 1939 this Anglo-Saxon shipwreck and all its treasures was discovered by archaeologists. The site has been transformed so that visitors of any age will be able to develop a better understanding of its history and hear the stories that have transfixed people all over the world. There are new spaces for exhibitions and installations plus a 17-metre high viewing tower which will be a wonderful experience for anyone who visits.
Calke Abbey – Derbyshire
Calke Abbey has an intriguing story has been built around the Harpur-Crewe family known to be both reclusive and socially isolated. Despite that reputation the latest research has shone new light on their lives. The research reveals very interesting and genuinely surprising stories of love, compassion and kindness as well the more well-known ones regarding isolation and loneliness. This property will be open to visitors who can use the opportunity to explore these themes through the stories of six household members including immersive indoor and outdoor experiences.
Anthony Denney was a 20th century British icon and his contribution to design is being celebrated this year at Rainham Hall which is his form home. Denney was an influential tastemaker, a talented photographer who worked for British Vogue, an interior designed and an art collecter. The exhibition at Rainham House will be presented as if it were a magazine with the intent of showcasing Denney’s multi-faceted career with spaces devoted to fashion, jewellery, arts, interiors, food and travel.
Powis Castle – Powys
This year is the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the Second Anniversary. To mark this important moment in history Powis Castle will be celebrating its past when it served as a refuge for a girl’s school over the course over the war. For the first time, the top floor of the castle will be open to the general public and the rooms will be transformed in to dormitories the girls used to stay in with access to original photographs and audio recordings.
Category: National Trust
So, it is a brand-new year but the weather still remains cold and you are wondering how to warm up. Well grab your wellies and take an invigorating winter walk. You can blow away the winter blues by hiking through stunning wintry woodlands. Alternatively, you could stroll through manicured gardens or ramble along icy river banks and lakes. Regardless of your preference, the National Trust has something to suit all tastes. Thanks to the help of its supporters, the National Trust is able to care for hundreds of walking trails all over the country and here are three you can try in Surrey and Hampshire.
Winkworth Arboretum, near Godalming
The wintry woodland of Winkworth sits on a hillside in the very heart of Surrey. This is the perfect spot for people who wish to take a walk in the crisp clean air. The landscape offers a mix of level walkways and moderately difficult hills to climb. There is a route for everyone here including those who wish to bring their dogs with them, provided they are on a leash. If you are someone who doesn’t enjoy repetitive treadmills, then take a lung full of the fresh air and enjoy the sights as you walk or jog. You can rest at the boathouse which boasts stunning views of the lakes or warm up with a coffee or hot chocolate at the café among the trees.
Hinton Ampner, near Alresford
Hinton Ampner and its acres of woods and parkland is a fantastic location for a winter walk. There are four different walks that you can take that will give you a great sense of the estate which is extremely picturesque and is filled with spectacular views. You could for example stroll around the local village of Kilmeston and its surrounding fields that served as the venue for a great Civil War battle. Anybody who loves the outdoors is going to enjoy it here.
Box Hill, near Dorking
There is nothing better than freeing yourself from being trapped indoors and taking a bracing winter walk. It is hard to imagine a better place to do this than on Box Hill and its famous slopes. This part of the UK is well known for its amazing views and lovely woodland walks. Box Hill is also the perfect venue for a family outing because the kids can enjoy themselves on the natural play trail which features dens and balance beams. At the end of your excursion you can relax at the café with pot of tea which is the perfect way to end the day.
Category: National Trust
The Director General of the National Trust has vigorously defended the charities decision regarding charging for entry to the Giant’s Causeway visitor centre. Some people have complained that they have been misled by official signs which suggest they must pay to visit the world-famous stones in County Amtrim. Hilary McGrady who heads up the Trust says that all money collected is used for maintenance of the site as well as other properties in Northern Ireland under the care of the National Trust.
Trying to be transparent
Mrs McGrady says her organisation is trying to be transparent about the signs. Some residents who live nearby and those who walk past the site have complained about the signs indicate that people are accessing the tourist location with the “permission” of the National Trust. Mrs McGrady whom herself hails from Northern Ireland says the organisation has been clear that anybody wishing to walk to the Causeway Stones for free has the ability to do so.
Maintenance not free
She adds that maintenance of the attraction is not free and somebody has to pay for it to be looked after. This means that entry to the visitor centre and the experience one gets from it will not be for free and that is the reason the National Trust charges an entry fee as well as for parking. People are paying for those two things rather than the Stones. The National Trust is the largest landowner in the United Kingdom and earned an income of £600 million from legacies, membership and property. The organisation has assets of approximately £1.3 billion.
Doing a better of job of being clear
According to a recent report, the Giant Causeway generated a contribution of more than £480 million to the Northern Ireland economy in 2017. Mrs McGrady who assumed the role of Director General in 2018 says it is a privilege to lead the National Trust. She says she has worked hard to be clear about what exactly the Trust is about. This is because for many years the media and the public conception of what the National Trust stands for has been a little confused.One day the conversation is about climate change and the next day the topic of discussion is LGBTQ so one can understand the confusion regarding what the organisation stands for.
Mrs McGrady says the overwhelming majority of the general public have enormous affection of the National Trust because it takes care of special places and she is seeking to take the organisation back to its roots which is what it does on a day-to-day basis. This doesn’t mean the organisation will stop pushing boundaries and it will continue to push the stories that the public wants to hear. She also wants to make sure the organisation stays relevant and its standards continue to rise.
Category: National Trust
By now you probably are aware that a membership of the National Trust helps special spaces stay that way, but what exactly that mean? If you having been thinking of signing up for a membership but aren’t completely convinced we have put together a list of four reasons why you should become a member of the National Trust. Without further ado here goes:
Save some very important rock pools
Your membership will help the National Trust protect as much as 755 miles of coastline. This means the beaches you visited as a child where you probably had a few picnics underneath the shadow of an umbrella, or the cliffs you walked along during a windy day will still be enjoyed for many more generations. It is difficult to keep coastline special but your membership will enable the National Trust keep them open and accessible to all.
Connect children to nature
Your membership will help kids discovery how much fun it can be to go on a natural adventure in special places. Members of the National Trust have helped the organisation put together a list of 50 things children should do before the reach 11 ¾. This means when you visit places taken care of by the National Trust you will probably see children building dens in the woods or enjoying hot chocolate by a campfire. Whatever they get up to a membership to the National Trust will ensure our children will be inspired by the outdoors
Keep a very, very old man happy
The ‘Old Man’ oak tree at Calke Abbey in Derbyshire is 1,200 years old but he is still a thing of beauty. He used to be part of Sherwood Forest which has since disappeared, nevertheless this Old Man continues to exist. Your annual membership will help to keep the Old Man protected and allow him to remain in the public eye hopefully for another 1,200 years to come
Get up close to our ancestors
Your membership fee will be used for a number of activities ranging from excavating an Iron Age savings fund hidden away in a cave, uncovering Roman mosaics in Gloucestershire that were created during the fourth century. The Trust also helps bring people closer to footprints made by cavemen. There is so much the National Trust does to bring its members closer to our ancestors that how could you refuse a membership?
So there it is, just four of the reasons you can help the National Trust do by signing up for a membership. If you would like to play a part in what the organisation does you should start your membership today.
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Category: National Trust
The National Trust has a great offer right now. Apply for an annual membership and pay using direct debit and you will get 2 months free membership. That is 14 months for the price of 12. Simply buy an annual membership on or before 31st May 2016 and enter coupon code NT16007MO at checkout and you will get two months free membership.
How To Get This Deal:
- Buy an annual membership with The National Trust on or before 31st May 2016.
- Pay using direct debit.
- Enter coupon code NT16007MO at the checkout.
- Get two months free membership.
Category: National Trust
When you become a member of the National Trust there are literally hundreds of different activities to choose from. In fact many of the activities available are just perfect for the whole family to enjoy. You could go bug hunting for example or fly a kite. You could even see if you can find creatures in a rock pool. The National Trust has a ‘50 things to do before you’re 11¾’ list of great activities which are fun for everyone. Rather than talk about all of them, here are our five favourites.
Fly a kite
The perfect time to fly a kite is when its nice and windy. Just imagine all the different colours, shapes and sizes of kites that are flying above your head and in the sky. If you want to make sure your kite really does fly, you need a large open space and some clear sky. This means the best place to fly your kite are either at beaches or parks so you could visit Dunstable Downs or Bedfordshire which are ideal.
Jump over waves
When you go to the beach there is an infinite supply of waves both big and small which you can jump over. See how many different types of jumps are possible over the waves that ensure you make a big splash. Be sure to choose a spot where the water is not so deep you don’t end up getting in over your head! The top places to go wave jumping are Compton Bay and Downs and Isle of Wight.
Build a den
You can make a den that is surprisingly cosy just by building it from leaves, twigs and branches. What you need to do is first find a place where there is plenty of natural materials that will enable you to get creative when you are building your den so you can hide in the forest. The best place to locate a den is a flat dry spot and you should start by leaning sticks against a low hanging tree branch so it looks like a teepee. The best places to build a den are Lyme Park House and Garden or Cheshire.
The best time to go star gazing is on a clear night when there aren’t that many clouds in the sky. You should choose a place where there are no street lights. Once you peer into the Milky Way, you will be amazed and the best thing about it is you don’t even need binoculars. When the night is very clear there are tons of exciting things to see with your eyes and if you are extremely lucky you might even spot a shooting star which you can make a wish on. Make sure you avoid going star gazing on a full moon night and Somerset is a good place to start.
Climb a tree
Put your boots or trainers on this autumn and see if you can climb a tree. Make sure you choose a tree that has branches that are big and strong that are able to be reached from ground. Once you are up in the tree, give everyone a wave and enjoy the view. Avoid falling off the tree by keeping your arms and legs on the tree at all times.
Category: National Trust
The National Trust is a charity that is run completely independent of the Government and is funded in whole by membership fees, donations and revenue the trust raises from its commercial operations. At present the National Trust has over 3.7 million members and over 17 million people pay for entry to properties managed by the Trust. The National Trust helps to protect over 350 historic properties, gardens and ancient monuments. But that is not all, the Trust also takes care of nature reserves, forest and woods so that everyone can benefit. If you are not yet a member of the National Trust, here are five reasons why you should join.
1. You become the ultimate explorer
When you become a member of the National Trust you will be given free and unlimited access to over 500 properties. These properties range from stately homes, to nature reserves and even gold mines. You will become addicted to your National Trust membership because there is so much to explore and you need never worry that you will have nothing new to discover. There is always a new adventure to be had.
2. There are some great beaches
The National Trust takes care of an astonishing 10 per cent of the coastline of the England, Wales and Northern Ireland. This means your membership will entitle you to enjoy beautiful cliffs, wild sands and crystal waters. It doesn’t matter whether you prefer flip-flops or hiking boots, rock climbing or building sand castles, there are plenty of reasons why you should head to the coast. If you are really lucky you may even get to see some marine life that visit the country’s shores such as dolphins and seals.
3. You can travel back in time
If you become a member of the National Trust you will get to enjoy a variety of historical artefacts. You will get to see the footprints of people who lived thousands of years ago or visit a World War Two airbase that was kept secret from the public but helped win the war. There is even a Roman villa that you can visit with some amazing contraptions such as slate bed that weighs over a ton that was built for Queen Victoria. There are plenty of stories just waiting to be discovered, that you will not regret joining the organisation.
4. You could become an adrenaline junkie
When you become a member of the National Trust you can start cycling across many miles of dedicated trails. You can even surf some of the best breaks that can be found in the North Atlantic. If that is not your cup of tea, why not take a canoeing trip along some of the UK’s great rivers? Being a member of the National Trust means you will never be short of activities because you get access to some wonderful outdoor locations and are able to hire sports equipment when you get there.
5. You become a champion of conservation
As we said earlier, the National Trust receives no money from the government, and instead relies on membership subscriptions and donations. By becoming a member of the National Trust you will be contributing to the conservation of over 257,000 hectares of land as well as historic properties, gardens and coastline. If that is not reason enough to become a member, we don’t know what is.
Category: National Trust
According to the new research undertaken by the National Trust, as well as offering economic and environmental benefits, community owned renewable energy facilities also provide social benefits.
Mark Walton who did research on the Anafon Community Hydro Scheme in Wales found that those communities who generated their own energy requirements tended to be more resilient operated more autonomously and felt more empowered.
The rural Welsh village of Abergwyngregyn has over the last 40 years lost its pub, petrol station and shops all of which have damaged the social fabric of the community. Over the last decade however a group of local residents raised funds to renovate an old mill which now operates a snooker hall and is home to the community café.
The community invested £1 million to develop a 270 Kilowatt hydro facility that generates enough electricity to power the whole village with surplus being reinvested into the community.
National Trust environmental adviser Keith Jones who designed the scheme and approached the village with his idea for a partnership a few years back says:
‘Working with Abergwyngregyn village to develop the hydro scheme has been incredibly exciting and a great learning curve for everyone involved. Our expertise paired with a track record for delivery and willingness to make it happen has created a powerful partnership and opened the floodgates for further collaboration. We’re already working with the town of Bethesda to look into restoring an old 1929 quarry hydro, which we hope to go through feasibility in the next few months. If more organisations like us are willing to support these kinds of projects then the potential for community energy could be huge.’
Hywel Thomas who is the community group’s chairman said:
‘Support from the community has been fantastic. When it first began there were only a few members, but 60 people came to a meeting last month and all were in favour of the hydro, it was overwhelming.’
Image Courtesy of National Trust