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NOW CLOSED Visited a National Trust property over the summer? Come and tell us all about it - you could win £100 National Trust voucher!

(123 Posts)
KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 14-Aug-12 15:46:23

National Trust selected 5 Mumsnetters to attend a National Trust Great British Day Out with their family over the summer holidays. This thread is for their feedback, but we'd also like to hear from anyone else who has attended a National Trust property recently - please tell us all about it.

Below are a couple of questions to get you started but please feel free to add any other comments you may have.


Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

Everyone who adds their comments to this thread will be entered into a prize draw to win £100 National Trust voucher.

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw!

MNHQ

HannahLI Mon 27-Aug-12 21:57:50

We went to Wicken Fen, because it's just a few miles from our house and I had great memories from going as a child. We really enjoyed it, it's great fun to go to and we really enjoyed walking on the board walks and looks for dragonfly's, newts and all kind of things as a family. We also really liked the dragonfly center!
I would definitely love to go back and join in more of their holiday activities or go on the first Saturday of the month and see the windmill in operation, or go pond dipping when my boys are a little bit older. There was lots to do and my children really enjoyed being out in the open air looking for bugs and creatures.
A really fun and great experience! Would definitely recommend it!

Badvoc Tue 28-Aug-12 15:35:31

We went to hardwick hall.
The kids loved it!
They did some activities in the family fun day which cost £5.
I was very impressed with the staff, the cleanliness of the toilet facilities, the coffee was very good too!
The children really liked the activities in each room of the hall...especially the dressing up.
They (and we) also really appreciated the toys left out on the lawn for the children to play with...they spent 20 minutes playing wit the frisbee, tennis bats and skittles. I though it was a lovely touch.
I have been telling everyone what a wonderful place it is and am planning to go back for my 40th birthday in October!
We also went to calke abbey which was also lovely...helpful, well informed staff (especially the lady at the chapel) and they made jubilee flags and played with the toys in the stable.
They particularly enjoyed the play area at calke too.

Boysboysboys Tue 28-Aug-12 18:37:14

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Tynesfield - its close to home
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
I have been before, its very beautiful and fascinating
Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
We have heard of it. My children (boys aged 8 and 6) have already done most of them!
Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
They played dens in the bushes for ages!! Sticks can entertain small boys for hours!
Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
More cafes!
Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
I really liked how welcome the staff made the children in the house, and how knowledgeable they were!
Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
Its was cloudy but dry!
Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Yes, I love most of the ones I have visited. WE went to studland in the holidays which sums up why the nt is so important to me!

lionheart Wed 29-Aug-12 10:55:21

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Dolaucothi Gold Mines
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises? The slightly scary climb out of the mine was a surprise but the best bit! Not exactly a property but an interesting place. It was pretty much what I expected from the web site.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it? No

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
The children enjoyed wandering in the dark. They ignored the long commentary from the guide.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what? The debit card machine in the cafe was out of action which meant cash only payments for food and drinks. The woman in front got caught out by this and had to choose the cheapest way to feed her children without any drinks.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it? The little shop which sold actual gold flakes in tiny bottles!

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones? It did rain but that added to the general ambiance. At one point the children were asked to jump up and down and shortly after the water dripping in the cave increased. They liked that.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not? Yes, it is a low key and interesting way to spend an afternoon.

lionheart Wed 29-Aug-12 11:07:31

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property? Dinefwr Park and Castle. It was close to where we were staying.
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises? The castle was a bit of a walk from the car park but we took a shorter and easier route on the way down. The grounds were lovely. I was surprised by the space and by the walks you could take--if I had known I would have been more prepared to spend a day rather than an afternoon here.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it? Yes, this was the first time I'd heard of it.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
The children enjoyed walking back through a field of sheep! They were a bit scared of the high parts of the castle.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
A better selection of healthy food in the cafe would have been good.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it? The walk through the grounds, although we didn't have enough time to look at everything.
Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones? It rained a bit. The car park was a bit soggy and seemed to be made of wet clay!
Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not? Yes, I would but I would tell them to spend the whole day here and properly explore the grounds. This was of more interest to the children than the house and even the castle. There was an assualt course and a few other things for them to do.

An0therName Thu 30-Aug-12 11:36:47

Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
we have been to Anglesea Abbey a few times this year - its our nearest and we also wanted to see the new tree house last time we went
we also when to Attingham Park as it was a good stop off
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
we really liked both - well kept friendly staff and great for kids - we havn't braved houses with either but would like to do that
Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
have heard of it - but didn't do any one our visits
Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
playing on play area
both place quite a long walk to the play area
Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones? didn't rain
Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Yes - provided I thought they had enough money to pay for it - although memebership is good value its still quite a lot of money to pay out at once for many families

StellaMarie Thu 30-Aug-12 11:50:15

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property? Wakehurst, it's nearby and have heard good things about it
Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises? The grounds are beautiful and the link to Kew Gardens makes it interesting. The Millenium Seed Bank building was very interesting and useful to spend time in whilst the rain storm went overhead!
Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it? Have heard of it but didn't take part, my children are older and used the day to increase their photography portfolios
Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy? Great variety of things to photograph in the different areas. Wasn't so much fun getting absolutely drenched through!
Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what? No I think they have got everything right at Wakehurst
Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it? Nothing particularly special, but I would certainly go again
Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones? No special rainy day activities organised but found shelter in the Seed Bank which is interesting
Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not? Yes, I would recommend them, however, they can be expensive unless you commit to buying an annual membership

Frontpaw Thu 30-Aug-12 14:43:52

1 Stowe gardens. Family favourite
2 Lovely gardens. The follies are amazing.
3 No
4 The pond and the gothic folly on the hill - holiday rentals I believe
5 Better picnic facilities. NT properties usually have these next to the car parks.
6 Staff in the shop - always friendly and helpful, with stickers and info sheets to hand out to the children
7 Always prepared for rain! It did a little but not enough to spoil things.
8 I have recommended to quite a few recent newcomers to the Uk with kids, and have bought annual passes for family members

MinnieBar Thu 30-Aug-12 14:47:39

1. Over the summer, we've visited Waddesdon, Cliveden, and Stowe Gardens. Chosen for their location really (to us, midway between us and friends for 2 and 3).
2. Waddesdon is always great, well-organised and loads to do (LOVE the woodland playground). Cliveden ditto. Stowe has completely re-organised its layout since I was last there which meant that with small children we didn't get very far at all, which was a shame but understandable. And the tractor ride was VERY bumpy!
3. No. My eldest is 5, so although I've heard of it (a lot, actually, I think it's had some really good PR) I think my DCs are still a bit small for it all yet.
4. They just enjoy running around. To be honest, we never actually go inside the houses as I know the DCs would just be a nuisance at the age they are, so we're always weather/playground dependent. The big slide at Waddesdon is a definite favourite.
5. This is going to sound v petty/lazy, but since you asked...! some people pushed in front of us/didn't notice the queues for the land train at Waddesdon so we had to walk all the way back, which was a bit of a struggle for my 4-yr-old after a long play.
6. Cliveden - we did one of the trails for the first time, which was nice. Waddesdon - the ice-cream!
7. Wasn't aware of any rainy day activities. We have been to Waddesdon when it's been raining and spent quite a lot of time in the power house watching Wallace and Gromit.
8. Yes, absolutely. Frankly I'm always a bit surprised when people don't have membership!

BumptiousandBustly Thu 30-Aug-12 16:48:55

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
We went to Ighatham Mote - because it is fairly close by, it was running a teadybears picnic today, and there are nice grounds for the kids to run around in

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
It was lovely, really liked the effort they had made for the teddy bears picnic.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
Have heard of it, but don't know much about it.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
They enjoyed most the running about - but were impressed by the puzzles put everywhere for the teddy bears picnic

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
Paper towels in the loos - its all very well saving the world but when DS and Friend have special needs and can't cope with hand dryers, it helps if there are paper towel alternatives.

Also, it was lovely to have mask making, but frankly having it in a room in the actual house - where the ladies running it were SO stressed about any mess etc - really did stop it being fun for the kids - maybe next time have a tent outside? That way everyone can relax, and I would have to feel as if my children were about to ruin something priceless everytime they picked up the glue.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
The outside hut - with the memory sticks - they were brilliant - and kept the kids amused for ages.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
It did rain, and we def couldn't go in the house with them - but the outside hut helped - there were no special rainy day activities

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Absolutely I would.

bluebump Thu 30-Aug-12 18:13:56

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?

I am lucky to live a 5 minute drive from Knightshayes so we always pop up there but today I finally went to Killerton for the first time.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?

I only visited the gardens but from the outside the house looked lovely.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?

I have heard of it (we picked up a leaflet at Knightshayes and one came free in the Guardian) but I don't think we did anything on the list today.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?

The kids loved the bear house! They also liked all the wooden toys left out for them to play with in the grounds outside the house.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?

Nothing.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?

Probably the bear house - the kids were looking out for the bear for the rest of the day and are looking forward to going back already to see if they can find it again!

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?

It was lovely and sunny today. It was nice to see the covered picnic area though had it been raining we would have popped in there.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

Yes I would recommend visiting the properties. The only thing that puts me off going more often is the price. Often we'd like to pop up to Knightshayes and just have a run around the grounds but the price puts us off. (I should probably get a membership!)

aimum Fri 31-Aug-12 22:07:34

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Dunstan Castle, (and also Tyntesfield)

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
We really enjoyed it. We enjoyed looking around the inside of the castle and there were lots of areas where the dc's could interact with the displays. Also lots of volunteers around to answer any questions we had.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
No, but we have been doing things on the list outside of National Trust properties.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
They really enjoyed doing the Fairy Trail, running around like idiots and playing in the play area.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
More cafes on site. It was our first visit and we didn't realise that it was just as close to walk down to the town as it was to walk to the mill cafe.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
Watching dd chase bubbles and having conversations about how we were going to dispose of our pets following a visit to the pet cemetery.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
We went on a lovely sunny day.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Definitely, although I would recommend a membership as a more cost-effective way of visiting.

tigercametotea Sat 01-Sep-12 13:10:29

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?

Speke Hall. We chose it because of it's proximity and because it is a really nice property with lots of space for the kids to run around and play in. There were other NT properties closer to us but not particularly suited for children IMO because they were more like historical buildings in the city centre area and do not seem to have much outdoor space.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?

It is very beautifully maintained. It was first built in the Tudor times, and has a lot of history behind it. It occupies a very large area and is perfect for plane spotting as the peripheries are right next to the local airport.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?

No we didn't, not at the time we were there, no, and it's because I heard of it but did not have the time to research it and so had no idea what were the 50 things! That said, have just Googled it up online now and my kids have done a few of those things before, though not at an NT property.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?

They enjoyed making their little crowns, playing at the playground outside the property, going on the estate walk and seeing an aeroplane take off, eating at the restaurant, as well as going into the period property to have a look. They had a great time all day. No bad points actually.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?

I would say the cafe's adult meals could be a bit more substantial for the price. The kids meals were of good portions though. Other than that though, we have no complaints.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?

There was a headless mannequin at the top of a dark flight of stairs leading to the kitchen area, dressed in full Victorian female servant outfit. Quite a spooky surprise (though not sure if it was intended to be), and another lady got a bit of a fright as well on her way up after me LOL

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?

It was good weather that day. Not too warm, slightly overcast but not raining either.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

Yes I would. It is good outdoor fun and makes a change from the usual sitting at home playing computer games... which I sometimes struggle to get my kids out of doing. But they always enjoy going to an NT property to run around in the beautiful gardens and play and have a good day out in general.

Haribolicious Sat 01-Sep-12 20:16:19

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?

Mottisfont, nr Romsey

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you
expected? Were there any surprises?

We had a fantastic day. Lovely gardens....very well maintained.....clean and tidy.....some parts of the wood were a bit difficult with a pushchair but we managed and it didn't really affect the day/where we walked. The Wind in the Willows Quest was much better than I expected and quite involved...it was very well thought out and kept the children's interest!

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?

No, haven't heard about it. I wasn't told about it at entry and didn't see any promotions about it.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?

Mottisfont had a Wind in the Willows Quest event going on [the reason we chose this property] and it was very well organised and allowed us to see all of the estate (grounds and house) which I think it, made it more interesting for the children. They loved going around the estate thinking they were actually helping Toad, Mole, Ratty and Badger! The area where the children wrote down their wishes was magical as was the bits where they thought they were charging up their energy for the quest...brilliant!

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?

Although we took a picnic....we did stop and have a snack and it was very expensive. We had 3 choc brownies at a cost of nearly £7! Also, the choice was very limited...I took a 2 yr old and a 5 yr old and the choices were quite rich for my 2 yr old's taste.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?

The whole Wind in the Willows Quest and then the children receiving a certificate at the end! As I said earlier, it was quite magical and the wishing section, where the children write on a ticket what their wishes are and then tie to the tree branches or plants was very special! The water is very clear too so being able to see the fish was also lovely. My 5 yr old said it was really fun to do the quest and it was the best day he'd had of the summer hols!!

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?

Luckily it was a lovely day....dry with some sun and I think that made it really. Had it been raining then we wouldn't have been able to complete some areas as near the river it was quite muddy and narrow and going into the woods was a bit muddy from the rain the previous day. It didn't affect us on the day but I think it would have stopped us going in those areas had it rained as the areas near the river would have been difficult to manoevere a pushchair through. This would also have meant that we'd have been limited in what else we could do there.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

Yes, definitely but I do feel that the weather plays a big part of it! There's something magical about going into the woods! Also being able to run in the open spaces and roll down the grassy banks is part and parcel of going to a national trust property I think! If the weather is good then you'll have a brilliant day.

hytheliz Sat 01-Sep-12 23:01:45

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Petworth House
It was close to where we were holidaying.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
It was lovely and met my expectations of a National Trust property. The volunteers were all so attentive and welcoming. We had a very warm experience.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
No.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
My daughter loved our picnic lunch that we had on the grounds. Also, looking for stuffed animal dogs hidden in many of the rooms.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
No, it was perfect.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
Lovely weather. Warm and receptive volunteers.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
yes, in a positive way. Lovely sunny day.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
yes of course I would recommend it. Always lovely people working there, good facilites, properties are so well kept. Never disappointing. You always know what you're going to get with National Trust. Always a good day out.

mummyofcutetwo Mon 03-Sep-12 19:21:31

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?

Visited Wallington, Cragside, Gibside, Deleval Hall, Souter Lighthouse, Plas Newydd and Penrhyn Castle. My writeup is about Wallington.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?

We didn't go inside as can't take pushchairs in and I didn't fancy carrying my ten week old while controlling a busy four year old. The house looked beautiful from the outside. The car parks, grounds and toilets were all immaculate.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?

Didn't take part as hadn't heard of it until talking to a friend yesterday about climbing trees...

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?

We went for the Wallace and Gromit jubilee celebrations. My son (aged 4) loved watching the W&G films on the big screen and meeting them as they walked around. He loved the activities that were put on esiecially. He always loves the quiz sheets NT do.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?

I paid extra to take my LO to the jubilee afternoon tea, as a special treat. It was awful! The food looked good, it's just that we didn't get much of it (I was feeding my baby and so couldn't get to the trays of food, and I couldnt attract the attention of the staff however hard I tried. And then we were shooed out of the marquee!). That was a real dampener on my day and really tainted my opinion of NT. I meant to write to NT to give them feedback of my poor experience but just couldn't find the time at the time.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?

The Wallace & Gromit jubilee festivities. The walk around the grounds. Seeing my little boy climb inside a big tree!

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?

It rained a little but not enough to make any difference to our enjoyment.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

I have always loved going to NT properties - my favourite as a child was Erddig. I would definitely recommend going to any of the ones I've visited - and have! I just wouldn't bother paying for the jubilee tea again.

aristocat Mon 03-Sep-12 23:20:27

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?

We visited Shugborough Estate, Staffordshire.
I chose this property after checking the NT website and liked the variety of activities that were available there - house, farm, playground, walled garden, land train, servants quarters and craft workshops. We were planning on spending the whole day there and hoped to see everything.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?

It is an excellent property to visit and we all had a super day out. To be honest the Estate was what I expected although the size and scale of the building does take your breath away when you first see it.
The surprises were Lord Lichfields private rooms, a real glimpse into his personal life which was much more interesting than I expected.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?

No, we had not heard about it and it was not mentioned to us on admission. There was no promotion advertising it around the Estate.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?

There was a treasure hunt in the house where children had to find the hidden playmobil man in each room. My children thought this was fantastic! In fact they were so busy looking for the man in each room that they miss out on everything else hmm.
DD has said that she didnt enjoy the 800m walk to the house and wanted to catch the train. However we walked miles around the grounds/garden and this was fine .....
No negatives at all from this visit smile.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?

I was pleased to see that there were craft workshops at the property but it was a shame that only the blacksmith was actually open on the day of our visit. Considering it was school holidays, this was a shame.
There was no guided tour around the house offered on admission either and I always find that this is a lovely way to experience the house better.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?

DD has said that her day was made special by the treasure hunt. I enjoyed the farm. Also in the playground it was nice to see wheelchair access for the roundabout and swing.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?

No, we planned our day around the weather. The forecast was sunny and so we went on that day. There are lots of outdoor activities which would not be as good in rainy weather.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?

Yes most definitely would and have already recommended, we have visited another NT property in the last few days - Attingham Park (Shrewsbury) and this was another fantastic day out.
There is so much to learn and do from a NT property that I am amazed why anyone would NOT want to visit them.

I do have one question please for NT, why do their properties only open at 11am or later. It would be nice to visit one in the morning and then go for lunch and the afternoon at another which is not too far away, sadly this is not possible with a late opening.

JiltedJohnsJulie Thu 06-Sep-12 10:35:43

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property? Chirk Castle, we'd never been there before and it was just over an hour away.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises? Absolultely loved it, the ride on tractos, playground and kitchen garden were all a surprise.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it? Didn't take part but had heard of it.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy? Doing the "Pike Drill" in the main courtyard. The man who ran it was particularly good and they loved it.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what? Yes, children's icecreams. All the ice creams were £2 each shock and were much too big for a child. Our local NT property does child cones for £1 and it is a much better portion for a child.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it? The castle, the gardens, the Pike Drill and the children been given peas in the kitchen garden by one of the staff.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones? Brief shower, it was fine.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not? Would only recommend it to someone with membership (and have) but NT membership and entrance prices mean that I could not recommend it to anyone who didn't have membership.

MTBMummy Fri 07-Sep-12 13:21:06

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
Basildon House, local and had outdoor spaces that DD could let off steam

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
Loved the activities laid on for the little children – hunt the butterflies and rats in the main house, actually kept DD (almost 3) happy.
Thought the properties were amazing, the houses in fantastic condition and the grounds great fun for DD to run around and let off steam, and actually learn a little about nature too.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
DD really enjoyed the dressing up at the Vyne, and also enjoyed the climbing trees available at both properties, we hadn't heard about it before and I wish I had looked it up prior to visiting

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
The only thing DD didn’t like was the lunch, we felt that half a sandwich was a bit poor, and the amount of junk food included was quite surprising, a larger sandwich and a single snack would have been a better option. That aside DD has been begging us to go back

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
Better weather – but that can’t be helped in the UK, even in summer smile

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
The volunteers in the rooms were incredibly knowledgeable and engaged well with DD, it was great for people to include her, rather than just ignore her.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
We had a bit of rain, but DD loved exploring the house to find the hidden butterflies and jumping in muddy puddles

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Definitely – it’s a great day out and really fun for the entire family group – including DP who can be a grumpy bugger at the best of times.

I cannot state enough how amazing the staff at the properties are - they really made the experiance so much better for DD which in turn makes the day better for DP and myself, and we found the staff at The Vyne just as good.

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 07-Sep-12 13:29:57

When does this thread end and the voucher is awarded?

<not that I'm sitting here hoping its mine, obviously grin>

ICutMyFootOnOccamsRazor Sat 08-Sep-12 16:45:39

Q1. Which National Trust property did you visit? Why did you choose this property?
We went to Wimpole Hall. We've been before and it's near my grandmother, who we were visiting.

Q2. What was your overall impression of the property? Was it what you expected? Were there any surprises?
We've been before so there weren't really any surprises. Haven't been inside the house since pre-children days.

Q3. Did you take part in any of the National Trust's "50 Things to do"? If so, what did you think of it? If you didn't take part, had you heard of it?
Didn't take part in anything organised, but I think I saw a press release about it a few months ago and was absolutely astounded that most children hadn't done the things on the list. My Ds is 4 and there were a only a couple he hadn't done.

Q4. What did your child(ren) enjoy most about the day? Was there anything they didn't enjoy?
They love the farm, but it's pretty expensive so we don't go every time. They mainly like running about outside and having a picnic.

Q5. Can you think of anything that could have improved your day out? If so, what?
I wish the farm was included as part of membership and not extra.

Q6. Was there anything that made your day particularly special or memorable? If so, what was it?
Not really, just a nice afternoon out.

Q7. Did the weather affect your day? If it rained, did you take part in any special rainy day activities? If so which ones?
It did rain but we didn't care and didn't do anything differently except don wellies and waterproofs.

Q8. If it came up in conversation, would you recommend a National Trust property as a day out to friends or family? If so, why? If not, why not?
Yes I would. Especially the outdoors ones to people with young children. I'd advise people to take their own food and drinks though as the cafes tend to be expensive.

KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 18-Sep-12 13:53:22

Thanks for all your comments. The winner of the prize draw is...

FreelanceMama congratulations, I'll PM you for your details.

aristocat Fri 12-Oct-12 14:28:34

Cooo-eeee MNHQ when will the videos be available to watch for this please?
Thanks.

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