Introduction   Overview   The shape of the debate   Themes Theme 1 - A National Heritage Collection Theme 2 - Heritage for Communities Theme 3 - Making Heritage Accessible Theme 4 Heritage and Tourism after 2014    
       
Introduction Disney Work? Case studies Heritage for All
A Place for Learning? The options for the Trust Video Package Your views 
     
 

In spite of the wide public popularity of natural and cultural heritage topics, a perception persists among a minority of people that the National Trust for Scotland is an aloof and prohibitively expensive organisation.  Research shows that this perception is usually held by people who don’t know the Trust – members, as might be expected, have a much better understanding.

This is just one barrier that may discourage people from visiting Trust properties or becoming members.  

Another may be residual memories of old-fashioned museums with exhibits in glass cases, leavened only by curled-up caption cards with text as dry as the paper it was typed on. As the foregoing section Disney Work? elaborated, things have moved on and this certainly isn’t true of Trust properties.

The Trust commissioned research to try and better understand these kinds of perceptual barriers, as well as trying to find out if there were other, more practical issues, like cost and transport, that put people off places of historic and natural importance.
 
     
  The Trust has worked hard over the last few years to tackle these perceived barriers. This has included significant improvements to this website, much more use of social media, training of property staff to be ‘visitor experience champions’ and a new marketing strategy which has delivered campaigns which emphasise value for money and how much enjoyment there is to be had at properties, including the TV advert Hey Scotland, Let’s Play!

Looking further ahead, the NTS Board of Trustees is determined to ensure that Trust membership loses any taint of exclusivity and that it is made clear that engagement with Scotland’s heritage is for everyone and anyone. This may mean some radical changes to the way the Trust is organised and its strategic priorities are set and funded.

These are some of the ideas that have been proposed: