National Trust properties aim to be inspirational for all

The cover of the brochure of the new National Trust strategy.

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Conservation charity the National Trust for Scotland has unveiled a new strategy – Nature, Beauty & Heritage for Everyone – as it refocuses its vision of caring for, sharing, and speaking up for Scotland’s magnificent heritage.

The bold strategy will be delivered over the next 10 years as the trust works towards its centenary in 2031, by which point it intends to be carbon negative.

Chief Executive Philip Long OBE says the strategy is a ‘firm renewing’ of the charity’s commitment to its founding principles of caring for Scotland’s special places and working to make these places as accessible as possible and inspirational for all.

At the heart of the strategy is a programme of projects and investment, with a spend of £38 million planned for 2021-2024, and with the intention to invest £100 million across the lifetime of the strategy, supported by the trust’s fundraising work. Hundreds of individual projects are planned and on top of that there will be many new initiatives to create opportunities to get more people involved in, and learn from, Scotland’s heritage.

The investment included a£900,000 programme of maintenance works planned for Brodick Castle in 2022, with more planned in for the following year.

A National Trust spokeswoman said: ‘This is part of the vital ongoing work needed to keep a historic building of this age and importance in good order and includes work that couldn’t take place during the pandemic. The work is a significant investment in one of Arran’s most important heritage places.’

Brodick Castle reopened in April 2019 after being closed for 18 months which saw £1.5 million of fire improvement works and a reinterpretation of the castle collection, including a new room for the Beckford Collection, one of the most important the National Trust care.

However, it was then forced to close again during the pandemic but reopened for the season last weekend and is looking forward to a bumper summer.

The upturn comes comes two years after more than 200 staff were made redundant at the conservation charity whose whole future was in doubt when it suffered a dramatic loss in income at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, as the charity recovers it is currently recruiting for around 300 seasonal and permanent roles to deliver its new 10-year vision, which has been created to ensure the Trust’s places are cared for and bring benefit to Scotland’s people and communities for years to come.

Recognising the integral role that members play in the future of the charity, from championing Scotland’s heritage through to speaking up for the invaluable work the Trust does, the new strategy also outlines the Trust’s commitment to grow its diverse membership base to over half a million people across Scotland over the next 10 years.

The new strategy is the most collaborative in the National Trust for Scotland’s 90-year history and has been shaped by its employees, volunteers, members, supporters, partners and communities, through consultation which has aimed to find out what the Trust’s places need and what people want from the National Trust for Scotland in the coming years.

This feedback informed three ‘pillars’ of activity, conservation, engagement and sustainability, which combine to deliver the Trust’s charitable purpose. These pillars are served by eleven strategic objectives which will support the Trust in its work to protect and share Scotland’s special places and minimise the charity’s environmental impact.

Philip Long OBE, chief executive of the National Trust for Scotland, said: ‘We’ve begun an exciting new chapter for the National Trust for Scotland, building on the experience, knowledge and skills we’ve gathered over the last 90 years, throughout which time our charity has received phenomenal support from its members and many others.

‘Everyone can benefit from Scotland’s heritage and from the work of the trust, and in the years ahead we want to involve as many people as possible in this. Our new strategy is a response to all that our charity has achieved over its long history, and to the current health, economic and environmental challenges which affect everyone.’

For more information on Nature, Beauty & Heritage for Everyone, and to learn more about the strategy and its objectives, visit:

Philip Long OBE, chief executive of the National Trust for Scotland


The cover of the brochure of the new National Trust strategy. NO_B14trust01

Philip Long OBE, chief executive of the National Trust for Scotland. NO_B14trus02