Youngsters sought to shape National Trust’s future

FLYING HIGH .... Pupils from  Alverton Infants  at the Kite flying event  at Souter Lighthouse
FLYING HIGH .... Pupils from Alverton Infants at the Kite flying event at Souter Lighthouse

SOUTH Tyneside youngsters are wanted to help shape the future of the National Trust.

The charity wants to sign up 10 youngsters from across the UK, aged between seven and 12, to play a key role in developing the Trust’s outdoor campaigns, and making their properties more fun for younger visitors.

As part of the recruiting process, bosses have thrown the doors open at Souter Lighthouse free of charge for the whole of August to help inspire borough youngsters.

The idea follows the charity’s recent Natural Childhood Report and 50 Things To Do Before You’re 11¾ campaign, and is aimed at encouraging children to explore the outdoors and get closer to nature.

Organisers said the perfect candidate will be brimming with enthusiasm and fun, and have a natural love for the outdoors and fresh air.

Potential applicants are also required to have an adventurous spirit and a wild imagination. A fondness for rolling down hills or jumping in muddy puddles would be considered a bonus.

Tony Berry, visitor experience director of the National Trust, said: “We are really committed to helping kids enjoy the great outdoors, making our places the most fun and family-friendly day-out destinations in the UK.

“Our kids go-free-promotion for August will not only give kids and their families the chance to get out and explore, but hopefully inspire them to apply for our Kids’ Council and let us know what we can do better in the future.”

A total of 200 National Trust sites are offering free children’s places this month, including several in the North East such as Lindisfarne Castle, Cragside, Wallington, and Washington Old Hall.

The successful applicants will be announced later in the year and will be offered free year-long access to National Trust sites for themselves and their family.

Kids selected for the Trust Council will win canoeing, surfing and camping trips.

The Council will meet throughout 2013 and report its findings to Mr Berry, so suggestions can be put into practice to help make the outdoors more fun for the nation’s kids.

The application process will close on September 7, and forms can be downloaded from the website at and sent back via e-mail, post or handed in at National Trust properties.

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