National Trust denies dumbing down in drive for 'new audiences'

Plans to cut back expert staff, put treasures in storage and develop ‘more active, fun and useful experiences’ draw fury It is an exquisite example of Italianate architecture, filled with classical paintings, sculptures and antiquities. Many of its 55 rooms have hand-painted ceilings; in one, an intricately carved dado depicts mermen battling with sea monsters. Kingston Lacy, a stately home built in Dorset in the 17th century and later remodelled as a Venetian palace, was acquired by the National Trust in 1982 and has 50 staff caring for its treasures. A tour of the house kicks off a six-part documentary on trust properties, National Trust Unlocked, presented by the architect George Clarke, starting on Channel 4 on Sunday. The houses were for the elite, but the fantastic thing is that they're not any more, they're for everybody Continue reading...

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