Sunday, March 01, 2009

Review-- The National Trust Handbook 2009

Title: The National Trust Handbook for Members and Visitors 2009
Editor: Lucy Peel
ISBN: 9780707804071/ The National Trust, 2009
Genre: Travel
Rating: A

First Line: In 1895 three Victorian philanthropists, worried about the impact of uncontrolled development and industrialisation, set up the National Trust.

Do any of you have a book that is a self-contained wish list? A book that, when you open it and begin turning the pages, your eyes light up and your heart beats a little faster? A book that contains page after page of things you just have to see for yourself? I feel this way about each new edition of The National Trust Handbook.

I've wanted to travel to the UK since I was eight years old. I never thought I would get there until serendipity struck and I married an Englishman seven years ago. I have since been to the UK twice, and let me tell you, it's a treat when your companion is not only your soul mate, but a seasoned UK driver! Before our first trip, I learned of the Royal Oak Foundation, which calls itself "Americans in Alliance with the National Trust of England, Wales and Northern Ireland." Among the many perks of Royal Oak membership is free entry to all National Trust sites, a free parking sticker for your vehicle, and a copy of The National Trust Handbook. Needless to say, Denis and I became members, and we haven't regretted it!

The book is divided into various sections of the country, and is filled with photos and descriptions of each National Trust site.

There are rows of little symbols which are confusing at first, but I quickly learned the ones which were the most important to me. Hours of operation, facilities available, available modes of transportation, driving directions, other National Trust sites in the area...they're all in the handbook to make trip planning easy.

If you're planning a trip to the UK and like history, architecture, gardens and nature walks, one of the best items you can obtain is a copy of this book!


  1. Very cool!! Looks like a super book for those of us who like to travel in the UK.

    I like this month's banner pic!

  2. Beth-- I consider the whole thing my UK Wish List. ;) I'm glad you like the banner pic...I had a difficult time choosing which one to use this month!

  3. What a nice and positive post. I can just imagine you and your husband enjoying the UK together :)
    Some of the best holidays we have had have been to Ireland and Scotland, and part of the fascination for me is being ´surrounded´ by English-speaking people. Fortunately, my family also enjoy it.

  4. Dorte--It can also be funny when you're speaking English in an English-speaking country...and they don't understand you!

  5. It didn't happen in Scotland, Dorte--it happened in England!

  6. I also adore Ireland and Scotland, from whence many of my ancestors hail (my name ain't "Erin Kathleen" for nothing!). I adore the accents!! BTW, Cathy, if you haven't already, you must tell us how you and Denis met (otherwise, I just need to read older posts).

  7. Erin--You can guess my ancestry by the inclusion of "skye" at the end of my name. :) I may have mentioned how Denis and I met in passing, buried deep within some post yonks ago. We met online in 1997 in a Usenet news group. After about six months of chatting, emailing and phoning, Denis boarded a plane to Phoenix. A few trips later, we knew it had to be. We married in 2002. It was a first marriage for me, so it was quite an adjustment. Now I can't picture my life without the man. He's my kind of crazy! LOL


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