We’ve had National Trust membership since my son was really small and we always get our money’s worth from our annual fee. It’s something I recommend to friends and I couldn’t imagine not being a member now. If we’re going away anywhere I always look to see what National Trust properties are near by. These days they are so much more child friendly than when I was a child in the 1970’s. Their outdoor spaces are made for children to run around in, and they are somewhere we can wander at will. We are all big fans. But they have a hidden gem, perfect for kids, that I had no idea about until my friend L mentioned it towards the end of 2017. The next time we saw her, she’d bought my son one and we haven’t stopped making memories with a National Trust passport ever since.
The passports do cost £5 and are available in the shops of National Trust properties in various coloured covers. Every time you visit a new National Trust property pop into the shop and ask them to stamp and date your passport.
My now nine-year old son loves collecting stamps in his passport and I wish we’d known about the system years ago. He’d probably be well on to completing his second passport already but it’s giving us a really good excuse to revisit properties further afield that we haven’t visited for a number of years.
I learned fairly early on to always have his passport in my handbag, whenever we left home. He still hasn’t forgiven me for the time almost a year ago when we were meant to visit somewhere to see their snowdrops only to find them closed, and ended up at a National Trust property inside, without his passport. To add insult to injury, it’s somewhere we’d been to a number of times before he’d been given his passport. We still need to return, maybe that’s this weekend’s visit sorted out!
Whenever we talk about visiting a National Trust property now, his first question is whether it’s in his passport already or not. We visited Lacock on Sunday and little did we know that this visit would give my son the chance to complete his first passport. As we arrived at the museum we asked where we needed to go to get my son’s passport stamped and were surprised to learn that between the museum, abbey and village there are actually three different stamps to collect. Looking in his passport, we realised that he’d get to complete his first and start his second passport all on one visit. One very happy boy.
Once you’ve collected 30 different stamps you can send away for a certificate. There’s a form to complete in the back of the passport with address information. I’m presuming that there are 3 different certificates to collect based on the questions asked on that form. We’ve sent his form away now and he’s eagerly awaiting his certificate. he does love collecting things! He’s got the first stamp in his new passport and I’m sure in the months to come he’ll be filling it up. I’ve made a note on my phone of all the stamps he already has so he can’t ‘cheat’ with repeat visits. After all, he could fill a passport with our visits to Stowe alone!
As well as being a fun challenge for him to complete, he’s also making memories with a National Trust passport. it’s something for him to keep and refer back to in the future, something that will definitely be added to his memory box.
Do your children have their own National Trust passports too?