To be put off visiting National Trust properties because they are National Trust properties

(155 Posts)
Growlithe Sat 03-Aug-13 18:55:47

I can see that the National Trust have some great places, but it puts years on me whenever I visit one.

They always try to flog you the annual membership. When you suggest you may not get the value out of it (because believe it or not you have other things to do and places to visit of a weekend than just National Trust places) they look at you like you are stark raving mad. And people with National Trust memberships do the same. It's like a cult.

They have complicated pricing systems based on which bits of the place you want to visit. How do I know which bits I want to see, I've never been there before. confused

The cafes are always expensive.

Whilst you often go for days out to entertain/educate the DCs, and they often have activities/packs aimed at children, they seem to tolerate children rather than welcome them.

They must also think the children of today are some sort of alien species, judging from their '50 things to do before you are 11 3/4'. I mean, do we have to be told the DCs would enjoy making a daisy chain, climb a tree or run about in the rain? I know kids like to play computer games these days but do they think we are so so removed from doing this kind of thing with our DCS? It's condescending.

They are full of performance parents with massive great big picnic baskets (which is probably understandable given the prices in the cafes I suppose).

Although they are knowledgeable, they often just seem to sap the life out of the very things they want to show you, and could do with taking a leaf out of places like the Black Country Living Museum, which has amazingly enthusiastic staff.

So go on, National Trust members, do your worst. AIBU?

JenniBoo Mon 05-Aug-13 20:39:40

Always found the NT very welcoming to small children - and great membership prices for under 25s too. Worth joining for the events programme - our local property does Xmas events, and Easter Egg trails etc., all free to members - it works out much, much cheaper than going to the Easter Disco or whatever at the local softplay

YNBU though - if you don't like it, well, you don't, but I can certainly understand why it appeal to many families.

tallulah Mon 05-Aug-13 21:06:40

I joined last year and have been pleasantly surprised by how good the volunteers always are with my now 6 yo. We've been in EH for decades and always get the impression they'd rather children were seen but not heard; but in every NT property we've visited the guides have always pointed out to DD what there is in the room to look for, and given her "clues" about where the things on her quiz are.

CokeFan Mon 05-Aug-13 21:08:25

I did not know that Velma and flowery. I've just had a look at the "Before you visit" bit of the FAQ on their website and it says…

"If you’re a member of the National Trust you can enjoy free entry to all our special places, so do make sure you have your membership cards with you when you visit. We can only give free entry to valid cardholders, so please remember to carry them."

It mentions that you might be charged for special events or that you might have timed tickets (we did today at Snowshill Manor and Gardens) but doesn't say anything about charging and yet, there it is on the wimpole estate prices page. The parking elsewhere I can kind of understand if someone else owns the car park.

Had a look at the Beatles thing and I can't say it sounds like my idea of fun. It's 2.5 hours looking round a couple of houses with a maximum of 15 people for £8.90 each?!? I guess they regard that as a "special event".

Our local one is Wimpole. There aren't many others in the area. I get a bit angry when I see maps showing all of the NT properties as there are far more properties in the Midlands, South and West. It sort of rubs in the fact that we have to pay to go into the farm. Membership is £99 for a family and entry to the farm is £11 for a family with membership compared to £23.70 without. So we would have to go to the farm about 8 times to really get our money's worth locally. And it isn't the best farm we have visited as an attraction (I suppose that isn't what they are aiming for).

BoffinMum Tue 06-Aug-13 08:33:57

Breathe, I agree. We're not renewing our passes as there just aren't enough places around here, only Ickworth, Wimpole and Anglesey Abbey, and we have been to all of them so many times now.

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