Our stories

Building Surveyor Joe Heaney talks careers at the Trust

Building Surveyor Joe Heaney talks careers at the Trust

Joe Heaney works as a Building Surveyor on a portfolio of properties in Northern Ireland. We caught up with him to discuss his early career, his current projects and his surveying plans for the future at the Trust.

Why did you choose to become a Building Surveyor?

I always had an interest in buildings and construction and favor practicality over design, and so always felt that surveying was my cup of tea, rather than architecture. I got my degree in surveying and then became a Chartered Surveyor in Local Government in 1988.

What are the best parts of the job?

The best part is getting to look after these special places and to take an active part in their conservation – each day is so different and never boring.

What types of property do you work on?

They range from eighteenth/nineteenth-century mansions (Castle Ward and Mount Stewart) and associated tenanted[...] read more

Redefining retail at the National Trust

Gone are the days of retail at the National Trust simply being quaint little gift shops. With 250 outlets across England, Wales and Northern Ireland and an evolving ecommerce offering, a lot has changed here over recent years. And do you know what? We’re just getting started.

Retail is a hugely[...] read more

What continues to attract chefs to the National Trust

After starting as a Sous Chef in Calke Abbey, Head Chef Steve tells us what continues to attract catering professionals like him to the Trust.

My advice to catering professionals considering the Trust? Throw out your preconceptions. It’s not a stuffy organisation that will look down its nose at[...] read more

From fashion student to globetrotting gardener in Japan

Our exciting new Triad project gives gardeners the opportunity to spend four months in three of the world’s leading gardens. Rhiannon was one of the lucky recruits chosen to jet off on the global gardening adventure. We caught up with her in Japan to discuss her experience so far.

I studied[...] read more

A global adventure for a student Gardener

Here at the National Trust, we look after the greatest collection of historic garden and garden plants under single ownership in Europe, if not the world. From conifers and culinary herbs to Chinese shrubs and cherry blossoms, our garden plants stem from all corners of the globe. And what better[...] read more

5 reasons you should build your Surveying career at the National Trust

  1. It’s so much more than just taking care of old mansions

    Think Surveying at the National Trust is just about conserving Downton Abbey style mansions? Think again. Mansions are actually a relatively small part of our portfolio: we look after about 300 of them, alongside an incredible range of other places.[...] read more

Catering at the Trust is challenging, busy and enjoyable!

I work part time at Hardwick Hall in the restaurant, as a Food and Beverage Assistant. I’m also a full-time student, studying a BTEC diploma in Aviation Operations, in Nottingham. The Stable Yard has an excellent reputation for our homemade cakes, so if you’re planning on visiting I[...] read more

Gardening at Winkworth is a privilege

I joined the garden team at Winkworth Arboretum in October last year. I still find it amazing that one man visualised, and ultimately realised, the layout of the place and I love how he managed to enhance and add to the existing site without taking away from the[...] read more

Bringing special spaces to life through digital and social media

I’m Claire and a consultant for digital marketing in the South West. My role covers a pretty big part of the country – from Land’s End to Poole and as far north as the Cotswolds – and I set the direction for digital campaigns across the region as well as[...] read more

Rangers of the Lake Districts: repairing pathways

What’s it like to be a Ranger across some of the nation’s most outstanding and beautiful places? See for yourself…

Say hello to the Upland Rangers

Across the Lake District, teams of three or four rangers work together to form the Upland Rangers. We spend much of our year repairing high[...] read more

Head Gardener at Cotehele introduces this year's garland

Staff and volunteers at Cotehele have grown, dried and grouped 36,160 flowers to create an impressive 60ft garland. Here we speak to Dave Bouch, Head Gardener at Cotehele.

Our Gardeners and our house teams joined volunteers and members of the public at Cotehele in Cornwall to work together on the project.[...] read more

Educational fun and games at Ightham Mote

I started at Ightham Mote, a medieval moated manor house, as an Intern with the education department in February. I originally approached them for volunteering work back in December as a great way to support my Masters course at university in Museums and Galleries in Education.

I helped the education department[...] read more

Read our Countryside Rangers' September adventures

Introducing Rangers Nick and Craig, our friends from the Herefordshire Countryside Rangers blog. They share what they’ve been up to this September from pulling weeds to planning for the following year – and not forgetting to find time for a cuppa and a slice of cake! Take it away, Craig!

While[...] read more

For catering work, nowhere else even comes close

Like many people, I grew up visiting National Trust properties and I remember walking round castles as a little boy thinking, ‘Wow, how do people get to work here?’ Well, I finally got my opportunity when I joined the Trust as an Assistant Catering Manager in 2009. I’ve worked in[...] read more

Writing the next chapter

In my previous blog, I wrote about how far we’ve come as a Brand and Marketing team and, in turn, as an organisation. We’ve driven real change, delivered some brilliant work, including our 50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾ and “I oak leaf” campaigns, and[...] read more

Sharing the love of special places

The last few years have seen some very exciting changes here at the National Trust, and the Brand and Marketing team has been central to these. The big one, for me, is that we’re becoming a much more customer-facing organisation. We’ve worked extremely hard to put supporters at the heart[...] read more

Leading the digital way

In my previous blog, I wrote about how we’re using digital to build meaningful connections with supporters and members; how we’re maximising digital channels and platforms to connect people with special places.

The time has now come for me to pass the digital baton on to someone else. I was brought[...] read more

Special places in the digital world

We look after some pretty amazing places and spaces – and we look after them forever, for everyone. We want people to share our love for these wonderful places and to recognise, and enjoy, the benefits they bring to our lives. That’s why we’re constantly exploring new ways to connect[...] read more

The pace of a hotel kitchen without the split shifts and evenings

10 years ago I was working as a Retail Manager for a soft furnishings store when my husband and I started thinking about opening our own catering business. I came to the Sizergh property as a seasonal Catering Assistant just to get a bit of professional experience in the field.[...] read more

Our ever-changing world

I arrived early at Baddesley Clinton and I had the rare opportunity to see the house apparently float on top of a bed of mist that was rising from the moat. It was one of those slightly magical – how lucky am I – moments, but also a moment of reflection.[...] read more

My traineeship was the best year of my life!

I decided it was time for a change of career and it wasn’t long before I stumbled across the advert for National Trust Your Future Your Hands traineeship in House and Collections. It sounded really interesting and I’ve always had a love for heritage, so I applied for the Taster[...] read more