A Noble Thing: The National Trust And Its Benefactors
During the twentieth century there was an unprecedented and largely unforeseen transfer of property in Britain from private ownership into the hands of a single charitable institution, the National Trust. In 1945 the Trust owned 112,000 acres and had a membership of 7,850. Fifty years later, when celebrating its centenary, it had a membership of 2 million and the area of land it owned had increased more than fivefold Only relatively recently has the significance of this transfer begun to attract the serious interest of political and social historians. Was it the last gasp expediency on the part of a landed aristocracy taxed nearly to extinction; or philanthropy; or a mixture of both? The reasons for such generosity prove to be as varied as they are surprising and illuminating. Merlin Waterson’s book, concentrating on the period 1940 to 2010, and accompanied throughout by rare and unusual illustrations, sheds new light on the motives of some of the Trust’s most important donors, and therefore on the origins of a social and cultural revolution.
Merlin Waterson is the author of books on the history of conservation, domestic service and country houses. He worked for over thirty years for the National Trust, latterly as Director of Historic Properties, and was involved in the acquisition of many of the properties he writes about. He shares his love of buildings, painting, mountains and sailing with his wife and three children. In 2005 he was awarded the CBE.
Extent: 336 pages including colour and black & white images.
Dimensions: Book measures approx: 20.5cm x 26cm x 3.5cm.
3 to 5 Working Days
- A Noble Thing: The National Trust And Its Benefactors 0 stars (0 review)
Share your thoughts with other customers… write your own review