Trust celebrates record visitor numbers

ONE of the country's leading nature charities is celebrating news of a record-breaking number of visitors to the East of England.

Annie Davidson

ONE of the country's leading nature charities is celebrating news of a record-breaking number of visitors to the East of England.

The National Trust has marked its best year ever in the region with almost 950,000 people visiting the area's 18 pay for entry properties between March and September - an increase of 167,000 on last year.

The good summer weather and the economic climate meaning people opted to take their holidays in the UK have both been cited as reasons for the increase.


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Suffolk's Ickworth House went up 21% to 127,655, while Melford Hall rose 25% to 27,515 and Orford Ness went up 30% to 7,157.

During the same period 20,000 more people joined the trust, which was an increase of 5,500 new members compared to last year.

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Justin Scully, assistant director, operations, for the National Trust in the East of England, said: “Not many of us have to go far before discovering a National Trust property, whether it be an imposing stately home, a stretch of wild and atmospheric coastline or expanse of countryside teeming with wildlife.

“The National Trust has been looking after these wonderful places and welcoming visitors for generations.

“Whether its people on holiday or from just down the road, those who already visit know what pleasures are to be had.

“With all this on the doorstep, it's not surprising that our visitors are rediscovering the pleasures of a great day out in the East of England.

We know how much pressure people's budgets have been under this year and believe that we have been able to offer great value, relaxing days out.

“Where else can you get 365 days out for the price of less than a tank of petrol for an average people carrier? “Membership of the National Trust has never been more attractive and more visitors means more money going into the local economy.”

annie.davidson@eadt.co.uk

www.nationaltrust.org.uk

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